CARES Program Manager- Homelessness Prevention Project
Description

     

ABOUT PUBLIC COUNSEL


Public Counsel is a nonprofit public interest law firm dedicated to advancing civil rights and racial and economic justice, as well as to amplifying the power of our clients through comprehensive legal advocacy. Founded on and strengthened by a pro bono legal service model, our staff and volunteers seek justice through direct legal services, promote healthy and resilient communities through education and outreach, and support community-led efforts to transform unjust systems through litigation and policy advocacy in and beyond Los Angeles.


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 150. 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 HOMELESSNESS PREVENTION LAW PROJECT


Public Counsel’s Homelessness Prevention Law Project (HPLP) serves individuals who are unhoused or at high risk of becoming homeless. HPLP provides pro bono representation to homeless individuals and families to stabilize housing and secure vital benefits, including cash aid (General Relief) and food stamps (CalFresh). In addition, HPLP assists unrepresented low-income litigants in unlawful detainer actions, and helps address tickets and warrants that present barriers to an individual’s housing and stability.

In addition to our homelessness prevention and anti-displacement efforts, our recent work includes: 

  • Supporting local tenants in their successful efforts to obtain and preserve COVID-related eviction protections.
  • Teaming up with other non-profit legal services providers, tenant organizers and community-based organizations throughout Los Angeles County to push forward the implementation of a Right to Counsel for all tenants in eviction proceedings.


JOB SUMMARY


Reporting to the Supervising Staff Attorney and the Directing Attorney, the Program Manager will re-launch and supervise the “Public Counsel CARES” program, which focuses on providing on-the-spot assistance in the various Department of Social Services Offices (DPSS) throughout Los Angeles to clients who are facing issues with government benefits from DPSS. This program will re-launch in the summer of 2024, and will serve youth, families and single adults in the communities within Los Angeles County’s Service Planning Area (SPA) 6, encompassing South Los Angeles, Compton, Florence, Rosewood, Willowbrook, Crenshaw, West Adams, Lynwood, Paramount and Windsor Hills, in partnership with regional Coordinated Entry System (CES) health and social service partners. Some clients outside this area will also be served. 


This program is designed to serve low-income clients and people experiencing homelessness with issues related to government benefits by first training groups of volunteers from area law firms, law schools, corporate in-house legal departments, legal professional associations, and other volunteer host sites, and then taking the trained volunteers into the DPSS offices to interface directly with clients and DPSS officers and assist the clients in securing same-day their benefits. In addition to the foregoing, the Program Manager will also do work on other barriers to housing that require legal intervention, including but not limited to: eviction prevention, landlord dispute resolution, worker compensation/unemployment benefits, clearing financial debt, professional licenses and identification, and expungement of criminal records.


This is a full-time position that will involve frequent off-site clinic work in South Los Angeles communities and other parts of Los   Angeles County. The position has the following responsibilities:

  • Plan and execute regular volunteer trainings and in-person advocacy visits to DPSS offices;
  • Advocate for individuals at DPSS offices who need assistance with obtaining government benefits;
  • Train and supervise summer interns in carrying out in-person advocacy visits to DPSS offices;
  • Coordinate with our internal pro bono department and external pro bono law firms and other pro bono partners to secure volunteer attorneys, law students, and other interested advocates to participate in in-person advocacy visits;
  • Serve as a point of contact for key relationships including county departments, law schools, law firms, corporate in-house legal departments, professional legal associations, and   other community and program partners.
  • Participate in community outreach, including establishing a CARES program at the local law schools, preparing and presenting trainings and special projects, etc; 
  • Administrative duties related to the CARES program, including preparing reports, entering and analyzing data, tracking and reporting on volunteer hours, and other administrative responsibilities as assigned;
  • Perform intakes, communicate with clients, and complete administrative work related to cases accepted for further representation, with attorney supervision;
  • Assist with preparation of legal documents related to eviction defense and other types of cases as assigned, with attorney supervision;
  • Provide litigation support to Staff Attorneys and Supervising Attorney;
  • Act as a resource for other Public Counsel staff and community partners; 
  • Coordinate grant reporting, billing, and outcome tracking for case work as directed by the Supervising Attorney; 
  • Perform various clerical duties such as record-keeping, document copying, etc.; and,
  • Other duties as assigned.
Requirements

     

ESSENTIAL JOB SKILLS AND ABILITIES

  • At least 3 years of experience in administrative and/or advocacy work;
  • Strong interpersonal and relationship-building skills necessary to grow and maintain the sustainable volunteer and community partnerships essential to the program 
  • Strong presentation, oral and written communication skills; comfort with in-person advocacy, approaching people sensitively, and advocating for low-income individuals with government employees;
  • Comfort with practicing trauma-informed legal advocacy: empathy, responsive listening, restraint from judgment, and demonstration of authentic care and concern;
  • Ability to work with and have sensitivity to individuals experiencing homelessness, including single adults, youth, and families; and those with mental health concerns and other disabilities
  • Commitment to race equity and community-centered work, and willingness to incorporate race equity principles and community-centered approaches in practice;
  • Experience with data collection and creating reports;
  • Work well as part of a team, but also be able to work independently;
  • Detail-oriented and superior organizational skills; and 
  • Ability to commute throughout Los Angeles County. 
  • In addition, as required by funding and our service partners, candidates must: 
  • Obtain certification that candidate is free of active tuberculosis prior to contact with clients;
  • Participate in other health and security clearances. 

 

JOB TYPE AND BENEFITS


  • Job Type: Full-Time/Exempt
  • Salary Range  for person with 3-10 years of administrative or advocacy experience is  $75,000-$85,000. DOE. 
  • 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 
  • On-site parking or public transportation reimbursement available 

 

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. All employees with Public Counsel are required to work in the office at least one day per week, at the discretion of the head of department. Some positions require additional in-office days. 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.