WHO WE ARE: Founded in 1966, CRLA’s mission is to fight for justice and individual rights alongside the most exploited communities of our society. Through a network of regional offices and cross-cutting programs, CRLA provides legal services to over 43,000 low-income people annually. Our work impacts farmworkers, individuals with disabilities, immigrant populations, LGBT communities, women, children and families in rural areas.
- Position: Community Worker
- Experience: One year
- Application Deadline: Open until filled
- Location: El Centro, CA
- Term of Employment: Regular, Full Time (37.5hrs/week)
- Other: FLSA Non-Exempt, Union Position
Reporting to the Directing Attorney, the Community Worker will perform initial screenings for eligibility, interview to determine the nature of the legal problem/s and to identify the type of legal assistance being sought by the applicants.
- Applicant Intake. Perform initial screening for eligibility; interview applicants to determine the nature of their legal problem and to identify the type of legal assistance being sought. Interview applicants to learn the underlying causes of their legal problem, and how the legal assistance being sought would assist clients in meeting their short, mid-range, and longer-term goals.
- Provide applicants with appropriate legal information and referrals.
- Prepare and deliver to attorneys and other staff verbal and written reports of applicant interviews, including: facts pertinent to the issues raised by applicants; assessments of applicants' capacities to represent themselves in the legal matter, and of the obstacles applicants face in meeting their stated goals.
- Conducting Investigations. Gathering information though field inquiry and other research related to actual or potential cases and litigation.
- Prepare simple documents from standard forms.
- Assist pro-per clients in identifying useful information for presentation of their cases; provide appropriate advocacy and make referrals where appropriate.
- Lay Advocacy. Represent client's interests in administrative hearings and other forums appropriate to a non-lawyer and engage in lay advocacy to the extent permissible under the law and the code of professional ethics; perform ministerial duties in connection with lawsuits such as filing and the service of process; and interpreting for non-English speaking clients in interview situations and before formal and informal tribunals.
- Community Outreach and Education. Provide legal information and skills training to individuals and groups to help our client communities understand and assert their legal rights and responsibilities.
- Collaboration with other agencies. Maintain CRLA liaison with community organizations and groups to ensure that CRLA resources address client community needs.
- Community Workers may be required to work outside the office, for instance, to work on regional sweeps.
- Perform other tasks assigned.
- Applicant must have the ability to perform all of the above duties.
- Commitment to serving low income clients.
- Ability to use internet, database and computer word processing programs.
- Good communication skills.
- Ability to interact productively with diverse community populations.
- Spanish-English fluency required.
- Applicants must have car and car insurance.
- Knowledge of researching and investigation methods including computer research.
- Knowledge of interviewing techniques
- Ability to relate to the client community, ability to communicate with client community, ability to ascertain all necessary information of client's legal problem through oral interview in person or by phone, listening skills, ability to make client feel comfortable during interview, ability to take good notes, ability to evaluate, assess and analyze client's problems and make proper referrals.
- Knowledge of or ability to learn the techniques of conducting community outreach events.
- Ability to effectively communicate and negotiate with adverse parties, under the supervision of the attorney.
Preferred Education and Experience:
A highly qualified and desirable candidate would also have the following:
- Experience working with low-income families and communities.
- Experience in a non-profit legal services environment.
- Prior experience in legal services.
- Spanish fluency or additional language ability relevant to the primary communities.
This job description is not designed to contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required for this job. Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice.
Compensation & Benefits:
Based on a competitive public interest union salary scale; generous benefits package includes Medical, Dental, Vision, Disability, Life Insurance, and 401K retirement plan contribution. Fourteen (14) paid Holidays, generous vacation and sick leave policy.
California Rural Legal Assistance thrives on our diversity and we are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to building a culturally diverse workplace and strongly encourage women, persons of color, LGBTQ individuals, veterans, persons with disabilities, and persons from other underrepresented groups to apply.
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