IRC in New York and New Jersey (IRC NY & NJ) seeks a Managing Attorney to lead a newly launched program in Elizabeth, NJ and New York, NY to provide legal representation to unaccompanied children released from the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).
The Managing Attorney, Children’s Program will launch and oversee a new program, funded by the Executive Office for Immigration Review, providing legal services for unaccompanied children, including representation in immigration court, before the USCIS Asylum Office, and in state court proceedings. The Managing Attorney will bring not only legal expertise and a passion for this area of work, but also the ability to motivate and mentor a team of legal professionals in a dynamic and fast-paced, multi-disciplinary environment. The position will work oversee a team of two attorneys and two legal assistants, split between the Elizabeth and New York offices. They will work in close collaboration with IRC’s social services programs for children and youth, building out a truly holistic model for children facing the immigration system. The position will also work in collaboration with community partners and will be part of IRC’s growing network of asylum and removal defense legal programs across the US.
· Oversee legal strategy through daily direct supervision of a small team of legal practitioners, including a Children’s Attorney and Legal Assistant, with potential to grow the team to meet ongoing unmet demand for children’s immigration legal services.
· Provide direct legal representation to a limited caseload of unaccompanied children in immigration court, before the Board of Immigration Appeals, and/or before USCIS where applicable, including on applications for asylum, relief under the Convention of Torture and withholding of removal, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), U-visas, T-visas, and adjustment of status. Initiate proceedings in state court for child clients as needed.
· Develop and monitor intake procedures in accordance with the program operating plan developed with the funder.
· Employ adaptive management techniques to provide regular individual supervision and support; mentor staff, set clear performance expectations and goals, give regular performance feedback, help prioritize workloads, help troubleshoot challenges, and maintain appropriate professional development plans.
· Engage regularly with the Vera Institute of Justice, the contractor and funding organization for this program, and identify technical assistance and training needs for program staff.
· Actively co-facilitate and support grant opening, grant review, and grant closing meetings, and lead all aspects of grant cycle, including developing/implementing monitoring & evaluation plans.
· Ensure program data is collected consistently, managed appropriately and reported timely, using IRC’s legal case management database and other relevant case management systems.
· Ensure effective integration of internships and volunteers within programs.
· Collaborate with other IRC program areas as appropriate to ensure client-centered service.
· Establish, maintain, and periodically refresh legal services program policies and procedures in collaboration with IRC’s Immigration Technical Unit; oversee and/or conduct regular case file reviews (paper files and electronic case files) to ensure compliance with legal case management procedures.
· Create and maintain a viable outreach strategy to cultivate and maintain strong relationships with community-based organizations, the private bar, and nonprofit legal providers; pursue program initiatives with partners that further goals and address unmet demand.
· Serve as an in-house expert on US immigration law by updating internal IRC colleagues on changes in immigration law affecting IRC’s clients as needed.
· Serve on IRC’s local Senior Management Team and work effectively across programs to further IRC’s mission. Contribute to and support office-wide Strategic Action Plan.
· Work closely with the HQ Immigration Technical Unit and other program offices as part of IRC’s immigration network.
· Serve as a strong advocate for humanitarian immigrants.
KEY WORKING RELATIONSHIPS:
Position Reports to: Executive Director, New York and New Jersey. Position liaises closely with HQ Immigration Technical Unit.
Position Directly Supervises: 2Children’s Attorneys, 2 Legal Assistants.
· Law degree (JD or LLM) from an ABA-accredited U.S. institution and admission to any state bar (admission to New Jersey or New York State Bar is strongly preferred);
· A minimum of 3 years’ experience providing direct representation in immigration court and before USCIS to asylum applicants and other immigrants seeking relief from removal; strong preference for applicants with expertise representing children in removal proceedings;
· Experience with affirmative applications before USCIS (e.g., adjustment of status, naturalization, I-130s);
· Demonstrated legal supervision skills and superb legal judgment;
· Ability to oversee and provide supervision on a reasonably high case volume and work under time pressure;
· Experience organizing and facilitating immigration workshops and immigration information sessions;
· Program and grant management experience;
· Experience with federally-funded legal services programs highly desirable;
· Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills;
· Bilingual in Spanish/English, required;
· Deep commitment to working with humanitarian immigrants;
· Trauma-informed and sensitive listening and communication skills;
· Desire to join a team working to protect due process and immigrant rights;
· Commitment to anti-racism and ongoing learning; and
· Must be able to travel in and around the service area to attend hearings and interviews and engage with clients and community partners.
· Standard office environment with occasional participation in community outreach and legal assistance events. Hybrid, flexible work options available.
· May require occasional weekend and/or evening work.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement: In accordance with IRC’s duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards and our commitment to safeguard the health of our employees, clients, and communities, IRC requires candidates who are selected for interview to furnish proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be considered for this position.
Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity: IRC is committed to building a diverse organization and a climate of inclusivity. We strongly encourage applications from candidates who can demonstrate that they can contribute to this goal.
Equal Opportunity Employer: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.
We offer a comprehensive and highly competitive set of benefits. In the US, these include: 10 sick days, 10 US holidays, 20-25 paid time off days depending on role and tenure, medical insurance starting at $120 per month, dental starting at $7 per month, and vision starting at $5 per month, FSA for healthcare and commuter costs, a 403b retirement savings plans with immediately vested matching, disability & life insurance, and an Employee Assistance Program which is available to our staff and their families to support counseling and care in times of crisis and mental health struggles.
How to apply
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