Staff Attorney in Public Justice Center's Workplace Justice Project
Be a critical member in a team of dedicated social justice advocates! The Public Justice Center seeks an attorney to join its Workplace Justice Project team.The Public Justice Center (“PJC”) and the Workplace Justice Project
The PJC pursues systemic change to build a just society. Founded in Maryland in 1985, the PJC uses legal advocacy tools to pursue social justice, economic and racial equity, and fundamental human rights for people who are struggling to provide for their basic needs. The PJC is a civil legal aid office that provides advice and representation to low-income clients, advocates before legislatures and government agencies, and collaborates with community and advocacy organizations.
The PJC’s Workplace Justice Project seeks to advance justice, equity, and worker power in the workplace. Project attorneys approach this mission through a broad array of strategies, including representing low-wage workers in wage-theft suits in state and federal courts; providing know-your-rights education to workers and community groups; and engaging in policy advocacy before the Maryland General Assembly in partnership with other advocates and organizations. We also make space to take on additional work outside of these strategies areas as needed, including, most recently, a successful suit challenging Maryland’s premature termination of federal unemployment insurance benefits and an ongoing suit challenging various aspects of the state’s administration of its unemployment insurance program. We work closely with unions, grassroots membership organizations, and other community groups and follow the lead of the individuals most impacted by injustice. We focus on industries where wage theft is common and where people of color comprise a disproportionate part of the workforce, including restaurants, construction, home care, janitorial and cleaning services, and landscaping, among others. The attorney will report to the lead attorney of the Workplace Justice team.Core Duties:
- Engaging in all aspects of litigation in state and federal courts, including fact development; legal research; drafting of pleadings, motions, and memoranda; and discovery
- Providing know-your-rights trainings and outreach to community groups
- Actively participating in coalition and team meetings and advancing policy advocacy, including in the Maryland General Assembly
- Thorough and timely case and file management
- Developing and advancing the goals of the PJC’s Workplace Justice Project, including contributing to the team’s workplan and race equity analysis
This is a full-time, exempt, professional position. The attorney may be called upon to work hours more than 40 hours in a workweek, including the potential for evening and weekend work. Local travel will be required at times. Salary is determined by the PJC’s pay scale; the range for an attorney with 3 to 5 years of experience is $66,000-$72,000 and increases with experience, plus $1,000 Spanish language annual salary supplement if qualified. An excellent cafeteria benefit package is offered including options for health, dental, disability and life insurance, and a retirement plan.
The following qualifications are valued for this position. Applicants should also identify other related or supplementary skills and experiences.
- Maryland bar admission or admission to another state bar and willingness to secure admission in Maryland as soon as possible
- Prior legal experience with low-income and other oppressed communities and clients
- Ideally, at least three years of experience practicing as a lawyer, although outstanding attorneys with less experience will also be considered
- Passion for social justice and commitment to the PJC’s vision
- Understanding of the principles of race equity analysis and the intersection of racism and poverty and their application to the PJC’s organizational life and to our work
- Attention to detail and keen organization skills
- Ability to work under deadline and manage multiple tasks
- Lived experience with our client communities highly desired
- Ability to empathize and sensitively respond to people in crisis situations
- Strong problem-solving, time management, and organizational skills
- Ability to work both independently and collaboratively with others within and outside the PJC
Applications will be accepted and interviews conducted on a rolling basis until the position is filled, but priority consideration will be given to applications received soon. Applications will be accepted by email only. To apply, please submit (1) a cover letter explaining your interest, (2) a resume, (3) two legal writing samples, and (4) the names, telephone numbers, and email addresses of three references. Please send application materials to Emily Woo Kee at WookeeE@publicjustice.org, with “Workplace Justice Attorney applicant” in the subject line.COVID-19 Information:
Most PJC positions, including this one, generally have the option of working in our office in downtown Baltimore City or at home. The attorney will be required to come to the office, the courts, or other meetings only as necessary. The PJC is providing PPE for employees and guests and maintaining other risk reduction measures in the office.Physical/Mental Demands and Office Environment:
The physical/mental demands described in this job announcement are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.Equal Employment Opportunity:
The Public Justice Center is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer that encourages all interested persons to apply regardless of race, color, national origin, ancestry, ethnicity, citizenship, creed, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, transgender status, age, religion, genetic information, physical or mental disability, marital status, or any other legally protected status. We strongly encourage Black, Latine, Indigenous, and other applicants of color, people with disabilities, and other people historically underrepresented in the practice of law to apply.