Job Opportunity: Drug Policy Analyst (Fixed Term)

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New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization that drives policy change to advance economic justice and prosperity for all New Jerseyans through evidence-based, independent research, analysis, and advocacy. Since 1997, NJPP has played an essential role in advancing progressive state policies.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:

NJPP is committed to building a more diverse and inclusive organization to fully represent and engage all New Jerseyans. We strongly encourage applicants from diverse communities, constituencies, and identities, including but not limited to: people of all ethnic/racial backgrounds, people of all gender identities/gender expressions, people with disabilities, low-income and LGBTQ persons.


NJPP is seeking to hire a short-term analyst or consultant to produce discrete research regarding the negative effects and social costs of drug prohibition in New Jersey.

Specifically, the analyst will be able to research and cost out the following:

  • The financial impacts of how many people face detention, trial, incarceration and parole as a result of these policies, the high costs of each, and the racial disparities that are generated as a result.
  • The costs of drug treatment, the barriers that individuals face in successfully accessing treatment programs.
  • Review of the public safety net programs that would be necessary for New Jersey to successfully decriminalize drugs.
  • The costs to government agencies that enforce the criminalization of drugs, how those costs are realized within the systems of incarceration, and the financial impacts of these costs on local and state government budgets.

In addition, the analyst will be expected to engage with partner organizations to ensure the perspectives of individuals with lived experience in this area are fully included and accounted for. Part of this engagement will include conducting interviews with individuals with lived experiences, professionals who work in areas affected by these issues, and lawmakers who currently or have previously supported drug decriminalization.

General Timeline of Activities:

Winter 2019: Draft and produce report – review work previously done in these areas to determine best practices and successes as well as failures, including the insights of partners and stakeholders, conduct interviews with individuals who have lived experiences for inclusion in the report, explore the racial disparities that exist and how they have manifested across the state.

Spring 2020: Finalize and publish report and launch a public education effort as well as work with partners to disseminate report findings, place editorials and opinion pieces in traditional and digital media supporting the report’s findings.

Summer 2020: Explore additional work and research to be done in this area, reassess the successes of the campaign and research, debrief with partners and determine the next steps. 

Core Competencies:

Quantitative/Qualitative Skills

  • Analyzes and clearly documents data to make comparisons and draw conclusions.
  • Identifies cause and effect relationships to solve complex problems.
  • Identifies opportunities to visualize data and/or present analysis creatively to expand potential reach and impact.

Written Communications and Editing

  • Prepares written documentation to transfer technical information about concepts, situations, products, services or results to diverse audiences.
  • Is able to organize, express and communicate ideas in a clear, succinct, accurate and convincing manner through a variety of communication settings and styles…

Interpersonal Communications

  • Demonstrates adaptive and effective communications suitable for a wide range of audiences.
  • Actively listens to seek clarification and understanding.
  • Open to considering other viewpoints.
  • Uses diplomacy and tact.

Priority Setting and Problem Solving

  • Spends time on what’s important.
  • Quickly zeros in on the critical few and puts the trivial many aside.
  • Eliminates roadblocks and creates focus.
  • Probes all sources for answers, looks beyond the obvious.

Networking/Relationship Building/Collaboration

  • Works cooperatively with others, inside and outside the organization, to accomplish objectives to build and maintain partnerships, leverage information, and achieve results.
  • Identifies, organizes, facilitates and /or sustains mutually beneficial partnerships and alliances with internal and external stakeholders.

Duration of Contract:

The position is a part-time, fixed-term contract for six months.

Salary: $25,000 – 30,000

To Apply:

Please submit a resume, cover letter, and work sample to with the subject “Drug Policy – [LAST NAME]”