Advocate – Housing/Benefits Planner

About the Position

The Harlem Independent Living Center (HILC), Incorporated is seeking a progressive Advocate – Housing/Benefits Planner who is knowledgeable about disability services. The ideal applicant will be a front-line employee and accountable for managing the daily advocacy functions of HILC.


  • Provides housing and entitlement counseling, and resource information. Makes referrals and advocates for consumers according to Federal, State, and Local laws. Assists with housing and entitlement application completion.
  • Works with staff and advocacy groups on housing, systems, and community advocacy issues.
  • Advocates on behalf of individuals by phone, in writing, and/or in person when self-advocacy is insufficient (this includes but is not limited to fair hearings and court appearances).
  • Maintains and updates resource directory of affordable and accessible housing (Federal, State, and Local) as well as low-cost loans and home buying options.
  • Represents the organization in the community on all disability-related issues focusing on housing issues.
  • Plans, implements, and conducts workshops and seminars on housing and other issues for constituents and others.
  • Completes all reporting and record keeping as required by funding sources.
  • Informs Harlem’s constituents with disabilities about a wide range of Social Security and SSI work incentive programs.
  • Provides individual benefits advocacy services as needed.
  • Participates in arranging and/or conducting outreach and presentations to SSDI and SSI beneficiaries with disabilities as well as to service providers.
  • Must be able to attend workshops and conferences in and out of the regular locale.
  • Must be able to meet deadlines, handle stress, and take initiative.
  • Maintains all constituent files & demographic information.
  • Performs all other job-related duties as requested.


  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field or an appropriate combination of education, skills, and experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to learn quickly, assess situations, and anticipate needs.
  • Experience working on teams as well as individually.
  • Knowledge of disability rights and resources preferred.
  • Fluency in Spanish and American Sign Language( ASL) is a plus.
  • Proficient in MS Word, MS Excel, Windows, Internet, and email.
  • Ability to read, write, and speak English fluently.

The Harlem Living Independent Center values a diverse workplace and strongly encourages women, people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals, people with physical disabilities, and veterans to apply.

Applicants will not be discriminated against because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, or any protected category prohibited by local, state or federal laws.

The chosen candidate must show proof of the ability to work lawfully in the United States of America and is subject to a comprehensive background check and drug screening.

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