Staff Attorney, Criminal Justice Reform Program


Posted: December 21, 2018
Application Deadline: May 31, 2019


Staff Attorney, Criminal Justice Reform Program

Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus

Based in San Francisco, CA

Exempt, Full-time position

Application deadline – May 31, 2019

The Opportunity  

Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus (Advancing Justice – ALC) seeks a full-time Staff Attorney for its Criminal Justice Reform (CJR) program.  The Staff Attorney will engage in policy advocacy, coalition-building, and litigation to advance and defend immigrant rights and criminal justice reform policies at the local and state levels. This  work will focus on implementing and building on California’s Sanctuary law (CA Values Act, SB 54) to disentangle local and state police from immigration enforcement. It will also require the attorney to work creatively with community partners to  develop innovative strategies that divest from the punitive criminal justice system and reinvest public resources in effective, community-based solutions.

The Organization

Advancing Justice – ALC is the nation’s oldest legal organization focusing on advancing and defending the civil rights of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (APIs). Since 1972, Advancing Justice – ALC has litigated high-profile civil rights cases, advocated for the passage of landmark policy changes, and provided an array of services, including community education, advocacy, and direct client representation to further the rights of low-income immigrants and communities of color. Current program areas include Criminal Justice Reform, Immigrant Rights, Housing Rights, National Security & Civil Rights, Workers’ Rights, Voting Rights, and ASPIRE, the country’s first API undocumented youth leadership program. A growing staff of 40 provide strong collegial support and opportunities to learn about and collaborate with other program areas.

Advancing Justice – ALC is based in San Francisco, a hub of the Asian American rights movement, progressive politics, and social justice activism. Our location in Chinatown is the first mixed-use, affordable housing co-op in San Francisco, serving as a model for preserving affordable housing in the city and protecting tenants’ rights.


Day-to-day activities vary in this dynamic position and include the following:

  • Drafting and advocating for the passage of immigrant rights and criminal justice reform policies at the state and local levels.
  • Developing local and state policy advocacy campaigns in collaboration with community organizers and directly impacted community members
  • Identifying opportunities for litigation at the intersection of criminal justice and immigration, including representing immigrant community members in filing lawsuits against local and state law enforcement agencies for violating civil rights  and Constitutional protections.
  • Providing trainings, webinars, and technical support to local and state immigrant rights coalitions that advocate for pro-immigrant policy changes, including Sanctuary policies.
  • Developing immigrant rights and criminal justice educational resources, including know your rights materials, for immigrant communities and community-based organizations.

Desired Qualifications

  • J.D. degree and California bar membership with at least two years of lawyering experience.
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing the civil rights of low-income, people of color, and/or immigrant communities.
  • Previous experience with coalition building, litigation, policy advocacy, and community-centered lawyering in the areas of immigrant rights and criminal justice reform.
  • Excellent research, analytical, writing, and oral communication skills.
  • Highly motivated self-starter.
  • Strong problem-solving and creative thinking skills.
  • Spanish language fluency strongly preferred.

Compensation and Benefits

This is a full-time, exempt position. Salary is based on our salary scale, which accounts for years of relevant experience and principles of internal equity. We offer a generous benefits package.

Application Process

Interested candidates should submit via email to (as PDF attachments) by May 31, 2019, including the following:

  1. Cover letter explaining your interest in the position
  2. Resume
  3. Legal writing sample (no more than 10 pages)
  4. Three professional references

Please indicate “Staff Attorney, Criminal Justice Reform” in the subject line.  

Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified persons are encouraged to apply, regardless of race, color, creed, ethnicity, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, disability, HIV status, marital or domestic partner status, or religious affiliation.

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