Communications Specialist
SEIU Local 521 - San Jose, CA

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Union – Communications Specialist

Under the direction of the Communications Director, the Communications Specialist will assist the local union with its communications work in support of the vision statement of the Local.

All duties listed are required, but may or may not be continuously performed or on-going. This list is not necessarily all inclusive.
1. Writes, edits, and produces content for Localwide e-newsletters and other large chapter newsletters, i.e. for Regions 1-6. Produces newsletter stock articles, leaflets, campaign communications, and other communications as appropriate.
2. Participates in campaign strategy meetings and creates communication component for campaigns, from worksite leaflets to press conferences.
3. Utilizes different communication tools to advance campaigns, including: photography, video, new social media, etc.
4. Creates and monitors chapter newsletter schedule, works with staff to provide high quality, timely newsletters to chapters.
5. Works with staff on the timely upload of chapter newsletters to web site.
6. Works with training director and communications director to train staff on chapter newsletter communications.
7. Identifies, works with, and trains members who can be spokespeople for 521. Helps provide media training to members for active campaigns.
8. Monitors media coverage in assigned region and/or issues as related to news that affect or involve our members.
9. Provides communications support and strategies for 521 Committees, Caucuses, Industry Councils, as assigned.
10. Participates in political campaigns, GOTV (Get Out the Vote).
11. Coordinates translation of local-wide union literature into main languages spoken by membership.
12. Maintains database and archive of union literature.
13. Works with staff to maintain photo library of members’ pictures and events.
14. Produces short video clips of key member actions, i.e. rallies, BOS speeches, press conferences.
15. Assists with email communications to members.
16. Assists with posting regular updates on relevant 521 social media platforms, i.e., the Web, Facebook.

Job Qualifications:
Excellent writing, proofreading, desktop publishing, verbal, visual/ graphic, and communications skills. A bachelor’s degree in English or related field preferred. Two or more years experience in writing leaflets, newsletters, and similar communications preferred. Knowledge of using social media tools to communicate union message a plus.

Special Skills and Aptitudes:
1. Understanding of union campaigns and issues.
2. Ability to articulate campaign messages effectively for a worker audience.
3. Excellent writing, proofreading, and verbal skills. A writing test is required.
4. Familiarity with all aspects of literature production process including layout required.
5. Ability to perform copywriting including headlines.
6. Proficient photography and video-recording skills.
7. Ability to handle multiple “priority” projects simultaneously and meet established deadlines.
8. Ability to produce high-quality design/artwork as evidenced by portfolio review.
9. Ability to work on multiple projects, coordinating work with others to produce projects on time.
10. Working knowledge of Word Press website maintenance and Blue State Digital email advocacy system preferred.
11. Ability to establish and maintain rapport with widely varied ethnic, occupational, and social groups.
12. Ability to work within timelines under pressure and minimal supervision.
13. Willingness to work long and irregular hours often including evenings, weekends, and holidays.
14. Ability to think strategically and participate effectively as part of a campaign team.
15. Dedication to improving the life of workers and a willingness to participate in a wide field of activities towards that objective.
16. Excellent writing skills in second language such as Spanish, Vietnamese or Chinese strongly preferred.
17. Driver’s license, automobile and auto insurance.

About SEIU Local 521

  • We are an organizing union - doubling our size in the last seven years.
  • We are a leading Local in SEIU.
  • We are very active in politics at the local, state and national level.
  • We believe that rank-and-file workplace leaders are the key to union strength in the workplace and we empower our stewards to take responsibility for representation.
  • We value leadership development for stewards and staff and prioritize training.


  • Monthly salary range beginning at $4,460.86 through $6,279.39.
  • Employer-paid retirement plan.
  • Fully-paid health insurance for worker and dependents (including domestic partner).
  • Liberal vacation and sick leave.
  • Life insurance, dental and vision care.
  • Pleasant atmosphere and great coworkers.

Local 521 believes in affirmative action. People of color, women and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

KW 05-04-12 SEIU 521/CTW-CLC

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About this company
SEIU Local 521 is a Union representing members from Private and Public Sector Employers and Homecare Workers.