Location: Gainesville, FL (statewide travel required)
Position: Staff Attorney (Full-time) – Civil Rights Litigator
Southern Legal Counsel (SLC) seeks a staff attorney to litigate individual and class action cases raising constitutional and statutory claims in Florida and federal courts, at administrative, trial, and appellate levels. The attorney may also engage in legislative work and policy advocacy related to civil rights issues.
SLC is a Florida statewide non-profit public interest law firm that is committed to the ideal of equal justice for all and the attainment of basic human and civil rights. SLC primarily assists individuals and groups with public interest issues who otherwise would not have access to the justice system and whose cases may bring about systemic reform. SLC uses a range of strategies to achieve its goals, including impact litigation, policy advocacy, and training and technical assistance to lawyers, lay persons and
SLC is a general focus public interest law firm and we retain the flexibility to work in areas of unmet need and fill the gaps in the justice system in Florida to ensure equal justice for all. Current areas of focus for 2018 include the following projects and areas:
Ending Homelessness: A statewide project to remove legal barriers to ending homelessness and to protect the civil and human rights of homeless persons and advocates.
• Trans Rights: A statewide project to address systemic barriers to economic opportunity and housing stability for transgender individuals. This project includes our statewide Transgender Identification Initiative to provide resources and assistance in updating name and gender markers on vital documents through community education clinics and an online website currently under construction (www.updatenamegender.org).
• Court Debt Reform: This project (focused in the 8th, 10th and 19th Florida judicial circuits) aims to address unlawful and unfair debt collection practices used to collect court debt, including the suspension of driver’s licenses without regard to the ability to pay.
Community Integration for Persons with Disabilities: A statewide systemic reform project to ensure persons with disabilities can remain in the community instead of being unnecessarily confined to institutions.
• Children’s Rights: A statewide project to reform the quality of Florida’s public education system and ensure all children have access to services necessary to gain a benefit from their education. This project also focuses on education as a necessary intervention to build resilience for children experiencing trauma and to provide supportive behavioral services to prevent institutionalization and incarceration.
Responsibilities (commensurate with experience and demonstrated skill level)
• Litigate cases in state and federal courts. This includes working and co-counseling with other organizations and pro bono attorneys; conducting extensive research and factual investigations; writing motions, briefs, and other court filings; court appearances; and oral arguments.
• Identify and develop new cases and litigation strategies in priority areas.
• Supervise and manage the legal work of law clerks and other interns.
• Develop community education and outreach to underserved client communities.
• Develop and write advocacy materials.
• Represent organization in public communications and at conferences and other events.
• Provide training to lawyers and advocates.
• Participate where appropriate on relevant task forces and coalitions.
SLC offers a salary which is comparable to other public interest law firms in the area and will be set depending upon the person’s level of experience. SLC also provides a benefits package which includes health insurance, short and long term disability insurance, life insurance, cafeteria plan, and a generous leave policy. Saff attorneys may make contributions to a 403(b) retirement plan administered by organization. Staff attorneys may also be eligible to apply for law school loan repayment assistance through The Florida Bar Foundation’s Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP).
• Other duties as may be assigned to support organization’s work.
• Admission to practice law in any state in the U.S. If not admitted to the Florida
Bar, must be willing to sit for the next Bar Exam.
• At least 3-5 years of federal court civil litigation or comparable legal experience.
• Strong academic background.
• Excellent research, writing, analytic, and investigative skills.
• Persuasive oral communications skills for wide variety of audiences.
• Ability and willingness to travel around the state.
Knowledge, skills, and abilities
• Demonstrated commitment to social justice and the mission of SLC.
• Creativity in developing innovative legal strategies to address needs of clients.
• Strong leadership skills.
• Proven project management and organizational skills, including the ability to work independently, attention to detail, and the ability to meet deadlines while under pressure.
• Ability to work collaboratively and in team settings.
• Cultural competency to work with diverse communities.
• Fluency in Spanish or other languages is a plus, but not required.
Applicants should send a cover letter, resume, original legal writing sample, copy of your law school transcript (unofficial transcript is acceptable) and contact information for three references to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please indicate “SLC Staff Attorney” in the subject line of your email, and indicate in your cover letter where you learned of this job posting.
Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.
An Equal-Opportunity Employer with a Commitment to Diversity
Southern Legal Counsel is an equal opportunity employer, and encourages applications from all qualified individuals. We consider all applications equally from applicants of any race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, disability, political affiliation, or national origin.