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National Security & Civil Rights (NSCR) Staff Attorney

December 22, 2021 Job Listing

National Security & Civil Rights (NSCR)
Staff Attorney
Advancing Justice - Asian Law Caucus
Based in San Francisco; Temporarily Remote
Exempt, Full-time, Regular position

Applications Due by February 11, 2022

The Opportunity

The need for creative advocacy to challenge racial and religious profiling and discrimination of Arab, Middle Eastern, South Asian, and Muslim (AMEMSA) communities in the U.S. is greater than ever. Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus (Advancing Justice-ALC) seeks an experienced attorney to work with its National Security & Civil Right (NSCR) program to develop innovative litigation and advocacy strategies to confront emerging challenges, as well as implement ongoing coalition and other campaigns.

The Staff Attorney reports to the Program Manager and works closely with the team to maintain close relations with AMEMSA communities, identify broad patterns of abuse or other systemic civil rights violations, and address these violations through litigation, direct client services, and policy advocacy. Experience with national security law, civil rights, immigrants’ rights, and criminal justice as it impacts AMEMSA communities is highly desired. Depending upon the project, the Staff Attorney will also collaborate with the Communications team, Litigation Director, Policy Director, and other departments.

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); in the aftermath of 9/11, we have worked to protect the civil rights of AMEMSA communities. 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 NSCR, Workers’ Rights, Immigrant Rights, Housing Rights, Criminal Justice Reform, and Voting Rights.

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.

Recent Accomplishments

Advancing Justice-ALC’s NSCR program works on a broad range of issues; recent examples include the following:

  • Leading multi-city policy advocacy and coalition building to hold local police departments accountable when they partner with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF)
  • Litigating the unlawful implementation of the Muslim Ban and challenging the Muslim Ban’s waiver process and participating in a range of other strategies to continue to fight the Muslim Ban, including administrative advocacy, federal legislation, and international treaty bodies
  • Working in coalition to challenge the federal government’s discriminatory Countering Violent Extremism Program (CVE), California’s Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE) programs, and developing a broad-based advocacy campaign challenging California’s homeland security operations
  • Providing direct representation to individuals who have been approached by the FBI for “voluntary interviews,” or others who have experienced difficulty while traveling due to placement on discriminatory government watchlists
  • Providing direct representation to individuals who are facing discrimination and national security-related bars or delays in immigration matters (such as cases involving Controlled Application Review and Resolution Program (CARRP))
  • Participating in various rapid-response coalitions and networks working on AMEMSA community issues
  • Litigate impact cases that safeguard civil rights and liberties for AMEMSA communities
  • Provide direct representation to impacted individuals, especially on border issues and immigration applications or other immigration matters impacted by national security bars or delays
  • Draft amicus briefs on arising national security-related litigation matters across federal courts, including researching and coordinating sign-on strategies for such briefs
  • Engage in public policy advocacy on policing, surveillance, and national security issues
  • Conduct community education and Know Your Rights educational events
  • Supervise community advocates, law clerks, and other volunteers
  • Represent the program and work collaboratively with coalitions and networks
  • Regularly represent the program with various media outlets and at conferences
  • B.A./B.S. and J.D. degrees with membership in good standing with the California State Bar
  • Three to five years’ relevant legal experience, ideally including federal district court litigation
  • Highly motivated and self-starting
  • Excellent research, analytical, written, and oral communication skills
  • Ability to work with a highly diverse group of mission-driven lawyers and staff with a range of substantive law knowledge, experience, and expertise
  • Demonstrated leadership and ability to work independently and in collaboration with other attorneys, community advocates, and community-based organizations
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing the rights of low-income, AMEMSA, API, people of color, and/or immigrant communities
  • Experience in organizing and/or working in coalition spaces to advance the rights of low-income, AMEMSA, API, people of color, and/or immigrant communities
  • Experience supervising non-attorney staff
  • Experience and/or knowledge of state legislative processes and structure desirable
  • Preferred bilingual skills in Arabic, Farsi, Hindi, Urdu, or other relevant languages

Compensation and Benefits

Salary is based on years of relevant experience and principles of internal equity. Starting salary for a Staff Attorney is $70,000 per year and the range for this position based on three to five years’ desired experience is $76,491 to $81,149 Advancing Justice-ALC offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes the following: generous vacation and paid holidays; medical, dental, disability, and life insurance coverage; a flexible spending account (FSA); and, 401K retirement plan .The terms and conditions of employment may be governed in part by the terms of a collective bargaining agreement.

Application Process

Interested candidates should submit the following:

  1. Cover letter addressing your interest in the position, relevant experience, and particular interest and/or experience in national security law
  2. Resume summarizing your education, qualifications, and experience, including any relevant community-grounded advocacy or experience
  3. Legal writing sample (no more than 10 pages)
  4. Three professional references and their contact information (email and phone)

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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 identity, gender expression, disability, HIV status, height, weight, marital or domestic partner status, or religious affiliation.