Salary: Subject to the NYCLU’s attorney salary scale, which is based on years of legal experience (current starting salary for a lawyer with 1 year of experience is $69,000; for 5 years, $87,000)
The New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) is one of the nation's leading advocates on behalf of constitutional rights and liberties. Founded in 1951, as the New York affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, the NYCLU is a not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization with more than 180,000 members and supporters, and eight offices statewide. We work in the courts, in the legislatures, and on the streets to advocate for racial and economic justice, free speech, freedom of religion, privacy, and equality before the law for all New Yorkers. For more information, please visit our website: www.nyclu.org.
DEI VISION STATEMENT
The NYCLU affirmatively values the humanity and contributions of those we work with, inside and outside of the organization; and will take action to build and sustain an equitable, anti-racist culture that centers on the voices and experiences of marginalized and directly impacted people and communities, and an organizational environment where all people feel valued, trusted, and respected. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and having a workforce that reflects the population that we serve and actively recruit people of color, women, people with disabilities, formerly incarcerated people, and LGBTQ and gender non-conforming people.
The NYCLU seeks an experienced, innovative, and dynamic racial justice expert who thrives in a collaborative, fast-paced organization and can skillfully implement and/or support the NYCLU’s interdepartmental approach to racial justice and broad docket of civil rights and civil liberties issues. The Racial Justice Counsel will play a key role in designing and executing the NYCLU’s racial justice agenda. The Racial Justice Counsel will have a particular focus on the intersectionality of racial justice with NYCLU
priority areas, such as environmental racism, Indigenous rights, and restorative Black justice. The Racial Justice Counsel will utilize a range of strategies to advance racial justice in New York State, including litigation, legal research, legislative priorities, civic engagement and public education, movement
lawyering, coalition development, and strategic communications. This position is situated in NYCLU’s Racial Justice Center and directly reports to the Racial Justice Center
ROLES & RESPONSIBILITIES
- Develop strong relationships with civil rights advocacy organizations and represent the NYCLU in multi-organization coalitions and working groups.
- Work in close collaboration with the NYCLU’s legal department on developing RJC litigation strategies to promote and expand racial justice across New York, including the following tasks: assist in ongoing environmental-justice litigation, draft public participation comments, develop claims, prepare pleadings and briefs, conduct discovery and depositions, handle hearings and trials, and argue motions and appeals.
- Independently review state and local legislation and engage in related advocacy and lobbying including the recently passed, reparations bill, the climate act, and the green amendment.
- Prepares and delivers testimony at public hearings; and
- In collaboration with NYCLU Communications staff, provide expert commentary to the media, participate in media briefings, and contribute to op-eds and other publications.
- Work closely with staff across the NYCLU—including the Education Policy Center, Legal, Policy and Field Departments, and our Regional Offices—to ensure that the NYCLU has an integrated approach to furthering the RCJ’s mission.
- J.D required. Must be licensed to practice in New York State and have an extensive background in racial justice work.
- Experience with litigation, legislative advocacy, and leading campaigns.
- Experienced advocacy, legal or otherwise working on racial justice issues, such as infrastructure equity, land-use laws, restorative principals such as reparations, education equity, and Indigenous rights, is preferred.
- Significant experience working in policy, legal, or government settings; high familiarity with public policy and legislative and legal procedures.
- Demonstrated ability to work successfully with organizations representing communities of color including Black, Latine, AMEMSA, AAPI, and Indigenous communities and/or Tribes. The ideal candidate will bring key working relationships with them to the NYCLU.
- Ability to work independently as well as within a team.
- Excellent interpersonal, relationship building and communication skills.
- Excellent research, writing, analytical, and communication skills.
- Ability to communicate complex legal and policy issues to government decision makers and the general public.
- Ability to work and communicate quickly and accurately, managing multiple projects and deliverables under pressure.
- Meaningfully commits to and supports the NYCLU’s internal and external commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Must be willing to travel throughout New York State
HOW TO APPLY
If you would like to be considered for this position, please submit via
Foundation/Racial-Justice-Counsel as a single PDF document (1) a cover letter explaining your interest in the position and describing your qualifications, (2) an up-to-date resume, and (3) a writing sample of your choosing, not to exceed 5 pages. We strongly prefer writing samples that are recent and entirely or largely your work. A wide variety of writing samples may be submitted such as blogs, advocacy letters, creative writing, or legal briefings. The NYCLU will start considering applications on September 21, 2023, and will continue to review them until the position is filled.
The NYCLU is an equal opportunity employer and encourages applications from all qualified individuals regardless of race, sex, gender identity or expression, age, disability, religion, national origin, citizenship, marital status, sexual orientation, veteran status, record of arrest or conviction or any other characteristic protected by applicable law. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and having a workforce that reflects the communities that we serve.
The NYCLU is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual with a disability and need assistance applying online, please e-mail email@example.com. If you are selected for an interview, you will receive additional information regarding how to request an accommodation for the interview process. This position may be eligible for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program.