STAFF ATTORNEY POSITION Walla Walla, WA Full-time, exempt
SUMMARY: Legal Counsel for Youth and Children (LCYC) seeks a passionate, collaborative, and innovative advocate, committed to social justice and anti-racism, to provide direct representation, community outreach, and education to young people 12-24 years who are or are at risk of experiencing homelessness in Walla Walla County. Applicants must be a member of the Washington State Bar Association currently or able to obtain membership by October 31, 2021. The position will be based in Walla Walla County. LCYC is a virtual non-profit – the attorney will work from home and spend most of their time in the community, meeting with clients and community partners in schools, shelters, and at court. As part of the Youth Homelessness Program team, the attorney will be representing young people on a wide range of civil legal issues including, but not limited to housing, public benefits, employment, education, orders of protection, family law, and medical debt. Applicants do not need existing expertise in these legal areas, but they do need to arrive at LCYC with a commitment to continual learning. The attorney will provide legal assistance for young people through (1) direct legal representation (2) legal advice and consultation, and (3) legal education to youth and community partners. In addition, in collaboration with youth and community providers, the attorney will help identify and influence systemic barriers to the elimination of youth homelessness.
COMMITMENT TO INCLUSIVITY, EQUITY AND REPRESENTATION: LCYC is an equal opportunity employer committed to having a diverse staff and board reflective of the communities we serve. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, those with lived experience, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups. LCYC particularly values lived experience in our practice areas of child welfare, juvenile justice, youth and family immigration, and youth homelessness.
COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS: This is a full-time salaried position that requires a willingness to work some evenings and weekends, as well as occasional travel within the state. LCYC exempt employees have some flexibility in setting their schedules each week. This flexibility allows staff to adapt the timing of their work week with the scheduling needs of representing youth. This flexibility also allows exempt employees to achieve better individual balance between work and home. The salary range for the position is $60,000 - $85,000, depending on experience. Spanish speakers are eligible for an additional $3,000 annually, beyond their set salary.
Supportive benefits include but are not limited to Flexible Time Away, medical, dental, life and disability insurance, 403(b) plan, and paid home office needs such as laptop computer, stand-up desk, and printer.
LCYC does not have a shared office space. All staff work from home offices. Travel for work is compensated at the Federal reimbursement rate.
Washington State Bar Membership currently or able to obtain membership by October 31, 2021.
Law students expecting to graduate and sit for the summer 2021 bar exam will be considered.
Demonstrated commitment to LCYC’s mission of protecting the interest and safety of youth in Washington by advancing their legal rights.
Experience as a practicing attorney or law school work/internship/externship; past experience in juvenile dependencies or related child welfare, education, public benefits, housing, family law, immigration or indigent defense field is strongly preferred.
Fluency in English and Spanish preferred
Commitment to and demonstrated interest in engaging in culturally competent relationships and applying an anti-racist lens to program operations, community partnerships, and supporting young people.
Demonstrated interest and ability in working with youth and families of diverse racial, cultural, socio-economic backgrounds and inspire their confidence.
Ability to work independently and be self-motivated.
Ability to communicate legal concepts, options, and potential outcomes in a developmentally appropriate manner with youth.
Ability to work professionally with youth and diverse community partners, developing a relationship of trust and confidence.
Ability to be flexible, adjusting to the needs of youth and community.
Committed to continual learning and responsive to feedback.
The applicant must have a valid driver’s license and access to a car as the position involves some travel. JOB DUTIES: The staff attorney in Walla Walla County will undertake a range of duties including, but not limited to the list below.
Conduct onsite intake for youth ages 12 -24 years who are or are at risk of becoming homeless. Intake is conducted regularly at local shelter(s), drop-in center(s) and school(s). Intake times may fall outside of usual business hours.
Initiate and continue outreach with community partners.
Provide youth with legal advice, referrals, mediation, and in-court representation as needed on a variety of civil legal matters including, but not limited to family law, child welfare, education, no contact orders, identification, benefits, emancipation, truancies, immigration, consumer debt and landlord tenant issues. May also address restitution, registration for sexual offenders, court fees, warrants and record sealing.
Investigate each case; analyze facts in light of relevant legal considerations; conduct legal research; prepare litigation strategy; prepare legal memoranda, motions and briefs, and argue specific legal motions and pleadings; litigate evidentiary hearings; examine and cross- examine witnesses.
Partner with local community service providers, school staff, shelter staff, court staff, young people, and LCYC Legal Supervisor on the direct delivery of services and continual improvement of the service model and its local adaptation.
Present trainings for community providers, school staff, shelter staff, court staff, service providers and/or youth.
Participate in regular case staffings with LCYC Legal Supervisor.
Participate in monthly meetings and an annual retreat with other LCYC staff.
Report trends and implications to LCYC’s Deputy Director to help inform LCYC policy goals and work.
Communicate regularly with other LCYC attorneys working on LCYC Youth Homelessness Program around Washington.
Participate in trainings to continually improve the advocacy provided to the youth LCYC serves.
Track time and pertinent case data from intakes and closing in LCYC’s case management system.
Regularly participate in all staff meetings, trainings, and identity group conversations on equity and systemic racism. LCYC’s services are community based, we provide onsite intake at community locations such as shelters and schools. We meet youth in locations where they feel safe and can easily access. Due to COVID-19, LCYC pivoted to more virtual services. As staff become vaccinated, we are moving back to best practices of in-person visitation. We will continue to adapt our policies in line with public health recommendations and our legal responsibilities to young people we represent.
ABOUT LCYC: LCYC protects the interests and safety of youth in Washington by advancing their legal rights. We accomplish our mission through direct legal representation, strong community partnerships, and systemic advocacy. We have four program areas: child welfare, juvenile court, youth and family immigration, and youth homelessness. LCYC provides community-based, holistic legal advocacy to expand access to justice for young people in Washington. LCYC was created and continues to evolve in response to the community’s needs. We meet youth where they are—geographically, developmentally, emotionally, culturally, and linguistically. We collaborate with the youth, familymembers, educators, service providers, and other community partners to ensure that the legal and non-legal needs of the youth are met. LCYC empowers youth by helping them understand and engage in complex legal systems that impact their lives and their families. We help youth understand and assess legal issues, options, potential consequences, and opportunities, before the youth determines the path forward. LCYC is a team of supportive, creative, risk-taking, and flexible attorneys seeking to disrupt the status quo. We are willing to fail forward, make mistakes and learn, and embrace change. We believe humor and teamwork are critical to doing this sometimes incredibly difficult work.
TO APPLY: Please submit a letter of interest, resume, brief writing sample, and list of three references to Chach Duarte White via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. In your letter of interest, please include a response to the following question for your application to be considered: How do you think your personal background or experiences, professional or otherwise, have prepared you to contribute to our commitment to anti-racism and equity internally and externally? The deadline for applications is April 16th, 2021. Applications will be reviewed upon receipt.
We are committed to continual learning. An essential part of that learning must be centered on anti-racism within ourselves, our organization, and the systems we encounter as advocates for young people. The start date for the applicant will depend on the ability of the attorney to receive their WSBA license.