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Staff Attorney (Medical Legal Partnership and Housing Unit)


Community Legal Services (CLS) is seeking a staff attorney to work on health-harming housing issues at CLS’s Medical Legal Partnership (MLP) located at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s (CHOP’s) Karabots Pediatric Care Center, located at 4865 Market Street in West Philadelphia.

In April 2018, CLS launched its second MLP at Karabots, building on the success of its first MLP at the Rising Sun Health Center in Olney.  Karabots is the largest pediatric primary care center in the nation, serving more than 30,000 patients each year, the vast majority of whom are low income.  CLS currently has a staff attorney on site at Karabots two days per week, but there remains tremendous unmet legal need, particularly in the housing realm, and particularly related to health-harming habitability issues like mold, lead, and pests. 

The new staff attorney position would focus on partnering with advocates in the Housing Unit and at CHOP to provide direct legal representation of patient families at Karabots with housing habitability issues, and to formulate and pursue systemic policy reforms related to substandard housing.

The new staff attorney’s job will include the following duties:

  • Work closely with the current staff attorney on site at Karabots to train medical and social work staff to identify, screen, and refer patient families who are facing habitability issues, both in public housing and with private landlords; 
  • Work on site at Karabots up to three days per week, providing advice and support to Karabots staff and patient families on an as-needed basis;
  • Conduct patient family intakes for housing and other referrals when on site at Karabots;
  • Provide full legal representation to Karabots patient families with habitability issues in Philadelphia Housing Authority Administrative Hearings, in Municipal Court eviction hearings, in Fair Housing Commission Hearings, and in the Court of Common Pleas, under supervision from Housing Unit advocates;
  • Accept a limited number of habitability referrals from the Rising Sun Health Center MLP as feasible;
  • Build strategic partnerships with CHOP’s clinical teams to serve specific populations of children with chronic complex conditions;
  • Track case outcomes, both to identify patterns (neighborhoods/landlords) that might inform systemic advocacy and to ensure the effectiveness and sustainability of the MLP;
  • Partner with the CHOP MLP team to identify and assess key metrics around health and housing;
  • Partner with Housing Unit advocates to identify and pursue opportunities for systemic reform at the local and state levels on issues regarding lead, mold, and other habitability issues;
  • Supervise law student interns and externs, pro bono attorney volunteers, and others as needed; and
  • Work closely with other CLS MLP advocates to support and contribute to the goals and metrics of the MLP program, including through grant writing and reporting.

This is a full-time position covered by the collective bargaining agreement between Community Legal Services, Inc. (CLS) and the Philadelphia Legal Services Union N.O.L.S.W./Local 2320/UAW.  The current minimum starting salary is governed by that agreement and is subject to change according to the provisions of the current collective bargaining agreement.  Raises and benefits are also governed by that agreement.

Community Legal Services, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer.  CLS does not discriminate in the selection of employees on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, sexual identity, genetics, age, national origin, disability, or veteran status.  In addition to federal law requirements, CLS complies with all applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.  This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting,



The ideal candidate will have experience in both litigation and policy advocacy as well as direct client representation and community education.  A demonstrated history of building relationships and working collaboratively with peers and a diverse range of partners, managing a large caseload, and working independently is required.  Other strongly preferred skills or traits include supervisory experience; interest and/or experience in managing, tracking, and analyzing data; and familiarity with grant writing and reporting.

To Apply: 

Deadline and How to Apply:

CLS will accept applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled.  You can submit your application on CLS’s website online at: positions/ OR

What to Include in your application: Please include a cover letter, resume, three professional references and one brief writing sample (10 pages or less).  If you fail to submit the requested materials, your application will not be considered.  Community Legal Services values a diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, people who have experienced poverty or homelessness and people who have had prior contact with the juvenile, criminal, or child welfare systems to apply.  CLS invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.


Submission Deadline: 
February 1, 2019
Organization Information: 
Community Legal Services
Philadelphia 19102
United States
Phone: 2159813744