Public Interest Scholarship, Latino Judge Appointed to WA Federal Bench, Victory for Foster Youth & New Tools to Help Protect LGBTI Refugees

New Web Portal to Help Rising Numbers of LGBTI Refugees Fighting for Safety

 

ORAM

On World Refugee Day (20 June 2014), ORAM – the Organization for Refuge, Asylum and Migration – is today launching a new online portal to help official bodies and NGOs share approaches to protecting LGBTI refugees and to adopt best practices in the face of rising persecution of LGBTI people globally.

The LGBTI Refugee Project Portal showcases projects and approaches that enhance the protection of LGBTI forced migrants in the areas of refugee status determination, policy development and research, practical protection measures and staff development. ORAM is encouraging posting of projects that will lead to better treatment of LGBTI refugees across the globe.

ORAM says the recent upsurge in the marginalization and persecution of millions of LGBTI people across the world has led to the number of refugee claims rising sharply, and yet only a small percentage are disclosing their sexual orientation or gender identity as the cause, for fear of further persecution or rejection. Even when the refugees do come out, many refugee agencies are not handling their claims properly or sensitively.

In addition to launching the portal, ORAM is calling on the UNHCR to maintain and release statistics about the LGBTI refugees within its protection mandate. It says that only with accurate data can the crisis be appropriately addressed. ORAM is also calling on all government and intergovernmental bodies to ensure the appropriate training of their staff, to recognize genuine LGBTI asylum claims and to better understand what it means to be an LGBTI refugee, to help ensure they are sensitively and appropriately treated. Learn more here.

 

LBAW Congratulates Judge Sal Mendoza confirmation to the  2ndDistrict Federal Court of Washington 

LBAW

The Latina/o Bar Association of Washington offers our utmost congratulations to Judge Sal Mendoza on his confirmation by the United States Senate to the  2ndDistrict Federal Court of Washington. He was confirmed by a vote of 92-4. Speaking in support of his nomination on the Senate floor, WA Sen. Patty Murray described Judge Mendoza as “a man who is the son of immigrant farm workers and himself worked on farms in the Yakima Valley and is now called by the President of the United States to become the very first Latino federal judge in the Eastern District of Washington.”

Sen. Maria Cantwell spoke on the historical significance of Judge Mendoza’s confirmation stating that this “is a major step forward and one that is long overdue. One in every nine residents of Washington State is Hispanic and yet we have not had a Hispanic federal judge in the eastern part of our state.”

Judge Mendoza has also been a long-time proponent of equal access to justice through his work with Benton-Franklin Legal Aid Society and he also serves as a Columbia Basin College trustee.  LBAW looks forward to many years of distinguished service from Judge Mendoza on the federal bench.

Historic Foster Care Ruling Strengthens Rights of Foster Youth in Washington State

CLS Logo

June 12, 2014- Columbia Legal Services

For the first time in Washington State’s history, an appellate court has ruled this week that failure to appoint counsel to a foster youth violated the youth’s legal rights. The case found that the Pierce County juvenile court misapplied due process law by understating the youth’s interests in his case as well as the risk of error in the case. In the case, In re the Dependency of J.A., the appellate court found that the government’s financial interests did not outweigh the interests of J.A. in having legal counsel.

The following is a statement from Casey Trupin, Coordinating Attorney with the Children & Youth project at Columbia Legal Services (CLS):

“Columbia Legal Services is proud to have represented this youth on appeal and laud the court for finding that ‘the interest in protecting [him] far outweighed any administrative or fiscal burden that appointment of counsel for J.A. might have entailed.’ All children and youth like J.A., whose lives are now completely controlled by the state and the courts, should have a legal advocate to advise them and fight for their rights.”

Tuesday’s decision offers up more momentum in the fight to strengthen the rights of foster youth in our state and comes on the heels of recent legislation (SB 6126) that provides legal representation to the most vulnerable foster children and youth in Washington State. The decision in the case can be found here.

Middle Eastern Legal Association of Washington Announces Public Interest Scholarship for Law Students melaw.

The Middle Eastern Legal Association of Washington (“MELAW”) will award one $1,000 public interest scholarship to a Washington state law student who has, is currently, or is planning on pursuing a public interest project that benefits the Middle Eastern community of Washington (the “Project”).

Judging Criteria: Applicants will be judged on their successful completion of the scholarship application, describing their Project and connection to the Middle Eastern community of Washington.

Deadline: All application materials must be received by September 15, 2014 to merit consideration. Please email completed applications to the MELAW Scholarship Committee at scholarship@melegal.org.

Selection and Notification: The recipient will be selected and notified by the MELAW Scholarship Committee and/or Board of Directors by October 31, 2014.

Scholarship recipients will be expected to provide a brief written report of the Project and may be asked to present on their experience at a MELAW event.

 

 

 

Check Out These Fellowships, Immigration Work, and Other Housing-Related Positions

Attention 3Ls and Recent Grads! Nome Superior Court in Alaska Court System Seeking Law Clerk I, Due TODAY

Alaska Courts System Judiciary

The Alaska Court System is accepting applications for a Law Clerk to serve a Superior Court Judge in Nome, Alaska. The position will be available August or September 2014 and last one year. The successful applicant will perform research relating to motions before the court; summarize case files; and prepare memoranda and recommendations. The position may also organize files, review case files for procedural sufficiency, review orders and judgments prepared for signature, and assist in the preparation of jury instructions and other duties. After training, the law clerk will act as the Deputy Magistrate during arraignment hearings one weekend per month.

Benefits: The ACS provides health insurance for the employee and eligible dependents, 11 paid holidays, personal leave accrual, Supplemental Benefits System (SBS), and the opportunity to participate in the Deferred Compensation Plan. Travel and moving expenses may be eligible for reimbursement according to the policies of the ACS.

For more information and application details, click here.  Click on “Information for Prospective Law Clerks” for complete details.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Seeking Summer Intern in Immigration Section in Washington D.C., Due 3/9

DHS Logo

The purpose of this internship for Summer 2014 is to assist the Immigration Section in the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties (CRCL). CRCL’s Immigration Section works to ensure that civil rights and civil liberties protections are incorporated into the Department’s immigration-related policies, programs, and activities and supports the CRCL Officer in her role as the designated Department point of contact for international human rights treaty reporting and coordination under Executive Order 13107.

This internship is located in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties (CRCL) in Washington, D.C.  The Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties (CRCL) supports the Department’s mission to secure the nation while preserving individual liberty, fairness, and equality under the law.

For complete information and application details, click here.

Attention Class of 2016!  Goodwin Public Interest Fellowship for Law Students of Color, Due 3/14

Goodwin Fellowship Image

For the past eight years, Goodwin has invested in a diverse legal community by offering fellowships to high-achieving law students of color.  Our fellowship program offers awards of $7,500 to students of color who work in public interest positions the summer after their first year of law school.  This program allows us to connect with a wide array of talented students early in their legal careers who are committed to giving back to their communities.

In addition to the monetary fellowship award, selected fellows are guaranteed a “straight-to-callback” interview with the Goodwin Procter office of their choice in the fall interviewing season during their second year of law school.  Fellows will also be invited to participate in some of our summer associate program events during their summer at the public interest organization.

Click here for additional information on the Fellowships and application details.

Attention Recent and Post Grads!  U.S. Department of State – Bureau of Population, Refugees & Migration Seeking Full Time Attorney, Due 3/14

UNHCR Refugees

The incumbent will work under the direct supervision and guidance of the Senior Protection Officer and the overall supervision of the Representative. After undergoing necessary briefing on the job, the incumbent and the supervisor will agree on a number of objectives to be met as well as core, functional and managerial competencies s/he should demonstrate during the assignment. The supervisor will provide the necessary coaching required by the incumbent throughout the assignment.

Please note that PRM-sponsored JPO positions are open to U.S. Citizens only.  Application deadline is March 14, 2014.  Photo courtesy of UNHCR.

For more details and application information, click here.

Attention Post-Grads! Victim Rights Law Center Seeking Two Full Time Staff Attorneys in Oregon, Applications Accepted on a Rolling Basis

Transitional Housing and TA Staff Attorney Position

The Victim Rights Law Center (VRLC), a nonprofit law center that provides free legal services to victims of sexual assault in Oregon and in Massachusetts, as well as legal technical assistance nationally, seeks a full-time, Oregon-licensed attorney to join our team and coordinate the VRLC’s transitional housing partnership. The attorney will provide training as well as legal assistance to sexual violence survivors who are homeless, with a special focus on survivors who are older, Latina or have disabilities. Services to be provided include legal screening and limited legal representation, sexual assault and legal trainings (for both homeless advocates as well as survivors experiencing homelessness) on how to use existing civil laws to meet sexual assault survivors’ needs. The attorney will also help the VRLC’s technical assistance team support lawyers, advocates and other victim service providers in their efforts to use existing civil laws to meet the needs of sexual assault survivors. This position is grant funded. Applicants should have a minimum of three (3) years legal experience, including some litigation practice, as well as experience working with sexual assault survivors and with vulnerable populations. Spanish language fluency is preferred, but not required.

Privacy Project Staff Attorney Position

The Victim Rights Law Center (VRLC) seeks a full-time attorney, with excellent writing, product development and organizational and communication skills, as well as a strong work ethic, a good sense of humor, and a commitment to serving vulnerable populations. Based in our Portland, Oregon, office, the successful candidate will help implement VRLC’s new Privacy Rights Project by conducting legal research, developing resources, creating curriculum, and delivering state and national trainings on the privacy rights of victims of sexual assault, stalking and domestic violence. Applicants should have a minimum of three (3) years legal experience, expertise serving sexual assault survivors and/or addressing victims’ privacy rights, and experience creating and delivering engaging, effective, in-person and web-based trainings.

For application information, click here.

Attention 1Ls and 2Ls! Andrade Legal Seeking Summer Law Clerk To Assist With Its Immigration Docket in Idaho, Due 4/1

Andrade Legal Team

Andrade legal seeks law student for a summer internship to assist with its immigration docket.  Student will join team of lawyers and staff handling the firms removal defense, family immigration and detention docket.  Law student will also assist firm prepare educational materials to be used in trainings with criminal defense attorneys, courts and the community at large.  Tasks may include drafting legal memorandum, legal research, gathering and summarizing evidence in support of hardship waivers and visa applications and assisting attorneys launch a program to educate incarcerated individuals about deportation proceedings.

For more information and application details, click here.

Attention Recent Grads! Zalkind Duncan & Bernstein LLP Seeking Full Time Attorney in Boston

ZDB LLP Logo

ZALKIND DUNCAN & BERNSTEIN LLP, a premier Boston criminal defense and civil litigation firm, seeks an associate to start in fall 2014.  This progressive 10-lawyer law firm has an exceptionally interesting and dynamic federal and state court practice, at both the trial and appellate levels.  Recent criminal cases include first degree murder, white collar, federal drug, sex offender registry and street crime cases.  Our civil practice consists of employment discrimination, civil rights, academic discipline, First Amendment litigation, GLBT legal issues, complex domestic relations, and serious personal injury litigation. Excellent benefits.  More information about our firm can be found on our website: http://www.zalkindlaw.com.

For more information on the position and application details, click here.

Interested in Practicing in California? The Eviction Defense Collaborative Seeks Entry-Level Staff Attorney in their San Francisco Office

Golden Gate Bridge_Courtesy of Arvind Balarama & Free Digital Photos

The Eviction Defense Collaborative seeks an enthusiastic individual to join our team in fighting for tenant rights and saving homes. As a staff attorney you will work with a team of attorneys, interns and volunteers in assisting primarily in pro. per. tenants fight their eviction lawsuits.

The Eviction Defense Collaborative (EDC) provides legal assistance and advocacy to low-income and indigent tenants in San Francisco who are being evicted. We assist by educating tenants about the legal process, advising them of their options, drafting responsive legal documents, providing referrals to assist them in fighting their evictions and negotiating legal settlements. The EDC also administers one-time rental assistance grants and loans to help tenants who are behind in their rent to pay the rent and stay in their homes. The work at the EDC is made possible by a small staff and many volunteers from local schools and the community. The work environment at the EDC is collegial, rather than having a rigid hierarchy of job positions, and we work as a team to assist the tenants who seek our help.

For more information and application details, click here.

Photo of Golden Gate Bridge courtesy of Arvind Balarama & Free Digital Photos.

U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs Seeking Summer Intern in Washington D.C., Applications Accepted on Rolling Basis

VA Seal

Professional Staff Group (PSG) VII, the Office of the General Counsel’s Appellate Litigation Division, represents the Secretary before the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC). It is the newest and largest group in OGC. With more than 120 persons, the staff includes approximately 70 appellate attorneys and a support staff of paralegals, legal assistants, and copy clerks. A 14-member management team completes the PSG VII staff.

Interns will initially be provided instruction in veterans law, as well as the VA adjudication system. The student will then be assigned a limited case load and will perform research and writing tasks associated with the needs of individual cases depending on their procedural posture. It is expected that at the completion of the
externship, the student will have prepared a pre-Briefing Conference memo, participated in a Briefing Conference, drafted procedural motions, and drafted and filed an Appellate brief with the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC). Additionally, the student will be expected to attend and participate in moot
courts in preparation for oral argument before the CAVC.

For more information and application details, click here.