ABOUT PUBLIC COUNSEL
Public Counsel is the nation’s largest provider of pro bono legal services. Founded in 1970, it is dedicated to advancing equal justice under law and addressing economic, racial, social, and other inequities by delivering free legal and social services to the most vulnerable members of our community. Public Counsel operates eight legal projects: Children’s Rights, Community Development, Consumer Rights & Economic Justice, Homelessness Prevention, Immigrants’ Rights, Veterans’ Rights, the Audrey Irmas Project for Women & Girls’ Rights, and our impact litigation project, Opportunity Under Law.
Public Counsel has a full-time staff of over 130. We are committed to building a diverse staff and encourage applications from people of color, people with disabilities, and people of all gender identities, gender expressions, and sexualities.
ABOUT IMMIGRANTS’ RIGHTS PROJECT
Public Counsel’s Immigrants’ Rights Project (IRP), envisions a world where all (im)migrants live with dignity, power, and opportunity. Staffed by approximately 25 attorneys, administrative staff, and social workers, IRP provides direct legal representation to non-citizens seeking asylum, special immigrant juvenile status, VAWA, T and U visas, and other relief in immigration court. In addition to direct representation, IRP engages in advocacy at the local and national levels, represents detained immigrants, recruits, trains, and mentors hundreds of pro bono attorneys each year, handles appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and California Court of Appeal, and conducts impact litigation. For 30 years, IRP has been at the forefront of protecting the rights of immigrants in Los Angeles.
Reporting to the Supervising Senior Staff Attorney, the Temporary Staff Attorney will;
- Provide zealous and trauma-informed direct representation to unaccompanied children in removal proceedings before the Los Angeles, Santa Ana, and Van Nuys Immigration Courts
- Represent children in state courts throughout Southern California to obtain predicate orders related to SIJS
- Represent children before US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in asylum applications, SIJS petitions, and other applications for relief
- Work collaboratively with social workers, administrative staff, and other attorneys to provide client-centered, holistic, trauma-informed, and interdisciplinary services for clients
- Collect case data and contribute to grant reports
- Perform other duties as assigned
ESSENTIAL JOB SKILLS AND ABILITIES
- Juris Doctor degree with California Bar membership OR awaiting results from the July 2022 bar exam
- Fluency in Spanish required
- Experience practicing immigration law preferred, with particular preference for experience in removal defense and representation of children seeking asylum and/or SIJS (will consider law school clinic experience and internships)
- Strong legal research and writing skills, and attention to detail
- Comfort and experience working with clients from diverse racial and socioeconomic backgrounds, including those with criminal history and/or complex trauma
- Willingness and ability to travel to/from the asylum office, superior courts, and immigration courts in Southern California region
- Ability to work independently, think creatively, and problem solve
- Commitment to working well as a member of a collaborative team that includes administrative staff, social worker, case coordinator, and attorneys; ability to effectively and respectfully communicate with other team members. Prior experience as a non-attorney in an administrative role a plus
- Desire to learn and grow as an advocate, and openness to feedback
- Ability to manage a large caseload and capacity to juggle and prioritize multiple competing tasks
- Commitment to immigrants’ rights and the mission of Public Counsel
- A commitment to economic and racial justice, including participating in and advancing the equity and inclusion work at Public Counsel
- Humility, kindness, and a sense of humor
JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS
- Full-Time, Exempt position
- Temporary position – this position is funded for a one-year period through October 2023
- Salary Range: Salary is commensurate with experience and ranges from $65,000 for a new attorney to $93,000 for an attorney with 11 years experience.
- Public Counsel offers a competitive benefits package including:
- Medical, dental, and vision coverage with both HMO and PPO options,
- The option to enroll in a Flexible Spending Account,
- A 403(b) retirement plan with elective contribution and a discretionary employer contribution after a year of employment, and Employer-paid life insurance and disability plans.
- Generous paid time off
- Parking and transit benefits
HOW TO APPLY
We value lived experiences and experiences working with clients across a range of settings. Please consider discussing such experiences in your cover letter, especially if they are not reflected in your resume.
PUBLIC COUNSEL VACCINATION POLICY AND COVID-19 PROTOCOLS
Public Counsel requires vaccination against COVID-19 for all employees, including new hires. Pursuant to federal and state laws, Public Counsel will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities or sincerely held religious beliefs, unless doing so would pose an undue hardship.
Public Counsel is generally office-based, but remote work has been permitted during the pandemic. As of June 6, 2022, all employees with Public Counsel will be required to work in the office at least one day per week, at the discretion of the head of department. This policy is subject to redesign by leadership. Public Counsel will work in a manner consistent with public health and local and state emergency orders.
PUBLIC COUNSEL EEO POLICY
Public Counsel is an Equal Opportunity Employer that does not discriminate against employees or prospective employees on the basis of union membership or activity, race, religious creed, religious observance, ethnicity, color, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or predisposition, military service, military and veteran status, pregnancy, child birth and related medical conditions, marital and family status, national origin, ancestry, age, medical conditions as defined by state or federal law, or disability, or any other basis prohibited by law.
All qualified applicants with criminal histories will be considered in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Los Angeles Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring.
Our leadership team is dedicated to this policy with respect to recruitment, hiring, placement, promotion, transfer, training, compensation, benefits, employee activities discipline, discharge and general treatment during employment.