Supervising Attorney, Housing/Benefits Unit – SCCLS
South Coastal Counties Legal Services, Inc. (SCCLS), a growing non-profit legal aid program providing free civil legal assistance to eligible low-income residents of Southeastern MA, Cape Cod, and the Islands, seeks to hire a Supervising Attorney to develop and lead the advocacy staff of the Housing/Benefits unit at its subsidiary, the Justice Center of Southeast Massachusetts (JCSM).
SCCLS and its subsidiary, the Justice Center of Southeast Massachusetts (JCSM), with a staff of 75 and 4 offices in Brockton, Fall River, New Bedford and Hyannis, is the principal provider of free, civil legal aid to low-income residents of Southeastern Massachusetts, Cape Cod, and the islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. SCCLS’ core mission is to achieve justice for eligible clients through community-based advocacy. The organization seeks attorneys committed to providing high quality legal representation through a lens of economic and racial justice.
Duties and Responsibilities:
Develop and implement an articulated vision for housing (in collaboration with the Directing Attorney of Housing Advocacy) and benefits advocacy that includes high quality direct legal representation and addressing underlying systemic issues; maintain a small and strategic caseload
- Effectively engage with the organization’s leadership team, advocacy staff, community groups and organizations, and the statewide housing advocacy community to develop and manage strategic initiatives, community needs assessments, and to respond to emerging trends and changing policies affecting housing and benefits issues
- Develop, support, and oversee the litigation of the housing/benefits team
- Assist in developing/revising standards of practice and ensure adherence to program and case handling standards, funder requirements and the highest professional standards using regular case review and other supervision standards and practices to develop the skills of the advocacy staff and ensure their professional development
- Collaborate with the Directing Attorney of Housing Advocacy and the statewide housing advocacy community to advance special projects that systemically advance housing justice needs
- Ensure advocacy staff is actively engaged with other program advocates, local community groups and organizations, and the statewide advocacy community to identify and address legal issues confronting our diverse and low income communities
- Work with the Program Manager and Executive Director to ensure grant compliance where appropriate
- Admitted in MA or eligible for admission; 5-7 (or more) years of legal practice with substantive expertise in housing law and civil rights issues; experience supervising desirable; understanding or experience with intersecting systems affecting housing insecurity desirable;
- Significant experience with advocacy in a variety of forums including federal, state, and appellate courts, administrative agencies, and/or legislative bodies; ability and will to lead and advance the housing law practice
- Strong leadership and mentoring skills and a leadership style that inspires and encourages professional growth in others; demonstrated ability to supervise across differences
- Demonstrated ability to identify and respond to emerging issues and policies affecting low-income clients;
- Ability to foster inclusivity, equity and humility when working with clients, colleagues and in supervising staff at the intersection of multiple identities, including race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, immigration status, religion, physical and mental disability, and/or limited English proficiency
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills;
- Capacity to facilitate groups and meetings equitably with a framework that embraces race equity principles
- Commitment to race equity, anti-racism and economic justice in the workplace and in providing legal services; prior racial justice and/or systemic focused experience required;
- Ability to engage effectively in person and remotely with people from diverse cultures, with diverse opinions and values, including with staff, volunteers, students, community members and funders;
- Fluency in a second language which reflects our client communities (Spanish, Portuguese, Cape Verdean Creole, Haitian Creole, Vietnamese, Khmer) desirable;
Compensation and Benefits:
SCCLS salaries are based on a collective bargaining agreement scale with yearly standard increases, multi-lingual annual increment for demonstrated language skills. Benefits package: health and dental with supplemental coverage, life insurance, disability, flexible spending account, 403(b), loan forgiveness. Generous paid leave including sick, vacation, personal and holidays.
Submit letter of interest, resume and legal writing sample by email to: LThelin@sccls.org with Subject Line: Justice Center Supervising Attorney Housing/Benefits. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
South Coastal Counties Legal Services and its subsidiary are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate based on age, class, color, disability, ethnicity, faith, gender, national origin, race, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression. We welcome applicants from a broad range of backgrounds and experiences. We strive to foster a healthy, inclusive environment where all staff, clients, and community members are valued, empowered and recognized.