Staff Attorney (Atlanta, GA)
Children’s Rights is a leading national children’s advocacy organization dedicated to improving the lives of vulnerable children in government systems. Children’s Rights uses civil rights litigation, policy expertise, and public education to create positive systems change, with a 20-year track record of raising accountability, protecting rights and improving outcomes for vulnerable children.
The core strength of our national advocacy program has been the grassroots development of legal reform campaigns to address dangerous systemic failings in child welfare systems across the country. The organization is building on its core strengths to extend the groups of vulnerable children it protects from abuse and neglect. New areas of reform include the pervasive practice of administering powerful and dangerous psychotropic drugs to children in foster care without adequate controls and oversight, the systemic discrimination against LGBTQ youth in custodial settings, the failure to provide adequate mental and physical health services to vulnerable children, the representation of unaccompanied immigrant minors, and the inhumane treatment of incarcerated youth.
Children’s Rights attorneys and policy staff, working with local advocates, thoroughly investigate specific problems in failing systems, develop lawsuits where appropriate, conduct extensive discovery, work with substantive experts and prepare cases for trial or negotiated settlement if possible. Post-judgment work involves regular assessment of performance and extensive negotiations with state agency officials, experts and court-appointed monitors. Staff attorneys can expect to be deeply engaged in legal research and analysis of claims and issues, as well as complex motion practice, stakeholder contact and supporting active investigation and/or litigation teams.
Children’s Rights is seeking an energetic attorney with 3-5 years of applicable litigation experience, interested in further developing their litigation skills under high-quality supervision, and in developing professionally to take on an increasing leadership role in complex impact litigation at the organization. The attorney will become an active member of one or more of Children’s Rights’ campaign teams, often working in conjunction with local co-counsel, local advocates and experts. The attorney will be an integral part of Children’s Rights’ expansion in the South with its opening of an Atlanta branch at 191 Peachtree in Atlanta, GA. The attorney will also help develop, maintain, and oversee the provision of pro bono services by our law firm partner in Atlanta.
Ability and willingness to travel is required.
Experience and Qualifications:
J.D. degree is required. The ideal candidate will have applicable litigation experience, which may include judicial clerkship, law firm or public interest experience. Applicants must possess outstanding research, writing and analytical skills, sound strategic judgment and interpersonal skills, a healthy sense of humor and a passion for social justice and the broader aspects of systemic reform and its policy implications. The successful candidate will be expected to perform at the highest level of practice, and to take advantage of opportunities to further develop professionally. Preference will be given to applicants with complex class action litigation and federal court experience or at least one to three years of experience practicing immigration law, preferably including representation of clients in humanitarian immigration claims such as asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, U visas and T visas. Fluency in Spanish is preferred and experience with the representation of unaccompanied minors is a plus. If not currently admitted to the Georgia Bar, candidate must be admitted to the bar of another state and agree to become admitted to the Georgia Bar within one year of hire.
Salary is commensurate with experience and is competitive with top-level public interest organizations. Children’s Rights provides an excellent benefit package.
Please submit a cover letter of interest, resume, and one recent writing sample (preferably including discussion of a constitutional, federal court, or complex issue) via email to HR@childrensrights.org and include “Atlanta Mid-Level Staff Attorney” in the subject line.
Due to the high volume of submissions, only applicants of interest will be contacted. No telephone calls, please.
Children’s rights is an equal employment opportunity employer and women, people of color, LGBTQ and gender non-conforming people and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.