Counsel, Criminal Justice Project-Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (DC)

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is one of the leading national civil rights legal organizations, with the principal mission of fighting racial discrimination faced by African Americans and other racial and ethnic minorities. The Lawyers’ Committee was formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to enlist the private bar’s leadership and resources in combating racial discrimination and the resulting inequality of opportunity—work that continues to be vital today.

The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and many others have once again brought police misconduct, including police violence, to the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. In particular, Black people and other people of color in the United States have been disproportionately affected by police misconduct, and the Lawyers’ Committee remains dedicated to its eradication.

The Lawyers’ Committee seeks an experienced attorney with a demonstrated commitment to racial justice to serve as a Counsel in the Criminal Justice Project. The Criminal Justice Project seeks to challenge the criminalization of poverty and end institutional practices that contribute to mass incarceration through impact litigation, amicus curiae practice, public education, programming, and policy advocacy. This position will largely focus on the development of legal strategies challenging policies and practices of police unions that threaten a fair and just criminal justice system. The Counsel will also participate to a limited degree in the Criminal Justice Project’s work on other issues impacting equal justice in the criminal justice system.

Applicants must possess excellent legal writing and research skills, and relevant litigation experience. Ideal candidates will be organized, responsive and able to manage a large and fluid workload, as well as have the ability to work well with colleagues, pro-bono counsel and fellow advocacy organizations.

This is a two-year, full-time position based in Washington, DC, with the possibility of extension at the end of the term.

Specific Duties and Responsibilities:

• Review and analyze police union policies and practices, police union contracts and other related documents in an effective, well-reasoned and timely manner;

• Engage with a wide range of partners including non-profit and public-interest organizations, both legal and non-legal, as well as firm attorneys;

• Help develop strategies to address some of the pressing racial justice and criminal justice issues related to the policies and practices of police unions;

• Lead investigations and develop new cases;

• Pursue litigation strategies that include legislative or administrative advocacy, filing complex litigation cases, filing amicus briefs and public education;

• Where appropriate, litigate in federal and/or state courts, including appellate courts, throughout the country; this includes performing legal research, writing legal memoranda, drafting pleadings and briefs, engaging in discovery and motion practice, conducting evidentiary hearings and oral arguments and trying cases;

• Engage in public speaking, writing op-eds and articles and articulating the Lawyers’ Committee’s positions on police unions as well as on various civil rights and criminal justice issues;

• Review other proposed criminal justice legislation, regulations and policies; and

• Demonstrate a commitment to diversity within and outside the office and an ability to implement an advocacy-driven approach to the work.

Minimum Requirements and Competencies:

• Deep commitment to the advancement of civil rights and racial justice;

• Graduation from an accredited law school;

• Active membership in the District of Columbia bar or the ability waive in;

• 3+ years of post-JD legal experience;

• Experience as a public defender, prosecutor, counsel in criminal cases, civil rights attorney, counsel in union-related matters, or as a litigator with substantial experience in criminal justice reform;

• Strong advocacy, organizing and coalition-building skills;

• Experience developing legal training programs and conducting trainings to groups of various sizes;

• Experience working on issues related to police unions is desirable;

• Experience managing and leading diverse coalitions and working directly with minority communities and community organizers is desirable;

• Experience providing support to pro bono attorneys is desirable;

• Excellent legal research and writing skills;

• Ability to produce high quality work under pressure of multiple deadlines;

• Organized and capable of leading and collaborating with multiple partners, including pro bono counsel and other non-profits, to develop complex litigation and manage multiple litigation projects simultaneously;

• Excellent interpersonal and communication skills;

• Strong intellect and ability to analyze issues and convey written information in a clear, concise, accurate, organized and convincing manner; and

• Motivated with demonstrated initiative to take on additional responsibilities as appropriate.

To Apply: Please submit a cover letter and resume including graduation completion dates to https://podio.com/webforms/24378466/1777650. No calls will be accepted. The position will remain open until filled and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Salary and benefits are competitive for a nonprofit legal organization. Staff Benefits include Employer Sponsored (Medical, Dental and Group Life & AD&D); Voluntary Benefits (Vision Insurance, Short-Term Disability, Long-Term Disability and Supplemental Life) coverage; the opportunity to participate in the 403(b) Retirement Plan; Voluntary Flexible Spending (Medical and/or Dependent Care) and Stipends (Cell Phone and Commuter/Parking Benefits); 11 paid Holidays and Vacation/Sick days.

Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion: The Lawyers’ Committee embraces diversity and inclusion in our workplace. We strongly encourage candidates of color and candidates from underrepresented communities to apply. The Lawyers’ Committee does not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibility, personal appearance, genetic information, matriculation, political affiliation or any other status protected under law.

Accessibility Assistance: Although calls will not be accepted regarding questions about the position, if you are an individual with a disability and need assistance completing the online application, please call 202-662-8600 and ask for an applicant accommodation or send an email with the subject line “Applicant Accommodation” to kcoates@lawyerscommittee.org.

 

For more information and to apply, please visit: https://podio.com/webforms/24378466/1777650