Search

Job

The Bronx Defenders Training Team 2022

Posted by
New
|
Published 14 days ago

The Bronx Defenders (BxD) – an innovative, progressive, holistic indigent defense office in the South Bronx – seeks passionate law graduates and entry-level attorneys with a commitment to public defense to join our Family, Criminal, and Immigration Defense Practice beginning Fall 2022.

Overview

The Bronx Defenders is a public defender non-profit that is radically transforming how low-income people in the Bronx are represented in the legal system, and, in doing so, is transforming the system itself. BxD seeks thoughtful, creative, energetic individuals with a strong commitment to social justice to join our dynamic and diverse staff. Our staff of over 400 includes interdisciplinary teams made up of criminal, civil, immigration, and family defense attorneys, as well as social workers, benefits specialists, legal advocates, parent advocates, investigators, and team administrators, who collaborate to provide holistic advocacy to address the causes and consequences of legal system involvement. Through this integrated team-based structure, we have pioneered a groundbreaking, nationally recognized model of representation called holistic defense that achieves better outcomes for our clients. 

Each year, we defend more than 20,000 low-income Bronx residents in criminal, civil, child welfare, and immigration cases, and reach thousands more through our community intake, youth mentoring, and outreach programs. Through impact litigation, policy advocacy, and community organizing, we push for systemic reform at the local, state, and national levels. We take what we learn from the clients and communities that we serve and launch innovative initiatives designed to bring about real and lasting change.

Entry-level attorneys will receive several weeks of intensive, interdisciplinary training on holistic representation, substantive relevant law, research and writing, litigation skills, client and community engagement, analysis of oppressive systems, and their impact on the marginalized communities we work with. Beyond this training period, staff will participate in practice-specific training as well as consistent comprehensive training to sharpen their advocacy skills, raise their overall consciousness, and enhance their collaboration with clients and colleagues. 

Responsibilities

Criminal Defense Practice:

The Criminal Defense Practice (CDP) at The Bronx Defenders is composed of over 150 attorneys, investigators, social workers, practice associates, and administrators who provide comprehensive criminal defense representation to people in the Bronx facing police and criminal legal system involvement. They appear in various proceedings including but not limited to arraignments, hearings, and trials in criminal courts, as well as concurrent proceedings such as Superintendent’s suspension and Department of Motor Vehicle refusal hearings. CDP attorneys collaborate with advocates and administrators on interdisciplinary holistic teams to identify and address issues that contribute to our client’s ensnarement in the criminal legal system and the enmeshed consequences that arise out of their contact with the system. Through a client-centered approach, our CDP attorneys strive to gain a deeper understanding of our clients’ circumstances and priorities. Armed with that understanding, they fight for our client’s desired outcomes by strategically raising personalized, persuasive arguments in mitigation, negotiations, and litigation. 

Responsibilities

  • Engage in intensive client interviewing, counseling, research, writing, oral advocacy, and negotiations as part of legal representation
  • Zealously advocate for individuals charged with misdemeanor and felony offenses in Bronx Criminal Court from the time of arraignment through disposition or trial, as well as concurrent proceedings such as Department of Motor Vehicle refusal hearings
  • Provide comprehensive, team-based representation collaborating with an interdisciplinary team of attorneys and advocates to avoid or mitigate any further legal system involvement or civil consequences that may arise out of clients contact with the criminal court system
  • Effectively litigate, confidently negotiate and skillfully advocate with judges, prosecutors, and other actors within the systems our clients navigate, including having the opportunity to co-counsel cases in other venues (ie. Family Court, Civil Court, Administrative Hearings, etc.) as necessary or desired
  • Participate in holistic advocacy within the practice and in the office
  • Maintain client case files and data in BxD’s case management system

Family Defense Practice:

The Bronx Defenders Family Defense Practice (FDP) provides legal representation and social work support to parents charged with child abuse and neglect, and who are at risk of losing custody of their children. Family Defense Attorneys at The Bronx Defenders are at the forefront of a movement to provide holistic, institutional representation to parents in Bronx County Family Court who are fighting allegations of child abuse and/or neglect. They are dedicated to fighting on behalf of parents whose parental rights are in peril while creating long-term solutions for the reunification and stability of families. Family Defense Attorneys will primarily litigate abuse and neglect cases, but will occasionally appear in concurrent matters including custody, visitation, and termination of parental rights cases. Family Defense Attorneys provide comprehensive representation in collaboration with attorneys and advocates in other practice areas to avoid or mitigate any enmeshed consequences that may arise out of our clients’ contact with the family regulation system. To that end, Family Defense Attorneys must be consistently prepared to litigate and confidently engage in skillful negotiations with judges, representatives of the Administration for Children’s Services, and other actors within the systems our clients navigate. Competitive candidates must demonstrate a commitment to defending parents charged with abuse and neglect while collaborating on interdisciplinary teams.

Responsibilities 

  • Zealously represent parents in child protective proceedings in Bronx Family Court and any concurrent matters including custody, visitation, and termination of parental rights cases
  • Engage in intensive client interviewing, counseling, research, writing, oral advocacy, and negotiations as part of legal representation
  • Litigate legal matters in abuse and neglect proceedings in hearings and trials in family court - orally and in writing
  • Assist parents in accessing appropriate resources and services to restore full parental rights
  • Work closely with social workers and parent advocates as part of our clients’ representation, and collaborate with criminal defense, civil and immigration attorneys, and advocates on enmeshed issues that arise in other venues
  • Effectively communicate and negotiate with judges, caseworkers, child attorneys, and representatives of the Administration for Children’s Services on behalf of parents
  • Effectively litigate, confidently negotiate and skillfully advocate with judges, caseworkers, child attorneys, and representatives of the Administration for Children’s Services on behalf of parents including having the opportunity to co-counsel cases in other venues (ie. Civil Court, Criminal Court, Administrative Hearings, etc.) 
  • Maintain client case files and data in BxD’s case management system

Immigration Practice:

Over a decade ago, The Bronx Defenders initiated the model of integrated criminal defense and immigration representation. Our attorneys work closely with clients and their advocates throughout the pendency of their cases in both criminal and family court to avoid or mitigate negative immigration consequences. Additionally, Immigration attorneys represent clients in deportation proceedings in both detained and non-detained settings, provide affirmative immigration services, and pursue community-based systemic reform litigation and advocacy challenging unforgiving federal immigration laws. Since November 2013, our Immigration Attorneys have also served as assigned counsel at the Varick Street Immigration Court under the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP), the first-ever universal representation project in immigration court.

Responsibilities 

  • Engage in intensive client interviewing, counseling, research, writing, oral advocacy, and negotiations as part of legal representation
  • Advise non-citizens accused of crimes on the immigration consequences of contemplated dispositions and mitigate the impact of their involvement with the legal system
  • Represent non-citizens on applications for immigration benefits, including citizenship, adjustment of status, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and remedies for victims of crimes
  • Represent both detained and non-detained non-citizens who face deportation in official removal proceedings
  • Represent clients before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) Immigration Court on the full scope of matters relating to removal cases, such as bond hearings, challenges to removability, applications for relief (including, but not limited to requests for Asylum, Withholding of Removal, Deferral of Removal under the Convention Against Torture Protection, Adjustment of Status with Waivers of Inadmissibility, Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) and Non-LPR Cancellation of Removal, Special Immigration Juvenile Status, and U & T visas)
  • Appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals
  • Effectively litigate, confidently negotiate and skillfully advocate with adversaries within the systems our clients navigate, including having the opportunity to co-counsel cases in other venues (ie. Family Court, Civil Court, Administrative Hearings, etc.) as necessary or desired
  • Provide comprehensive, team-based representation collaborating with an interdisciplinary team of attorneys and advocates to avoid or mitigate any further legal system involvement or civil consequences that may arise out of clients contact with the immigration court system
  • Maintain client case files and data in BxD’s case management system

Additional qualifications specific to the Immigration Practice:

  • A valid driver’s license--or the ability to obtain one--is required. The role sometimes requires travel to detention facilities outside of NYC where clients are held (vehicles are provided)
  • We are specifically seeking applications from candidates with Spanish language skills and/or those from racially and ethnically marginalized communities disproportionately impacted by the immigration system, whose lived experiences contribute to more culturally conscious client representation

Qualifications

All applicants, regardless of practice area, must be:

  • A third-year (3L) student or a recent graduate of an American Bar Association-accredited law school, or 
  • An attorney having less than three (3) years of relevant legal practice

All applicants, regardless of practice area, must demonstrate:

  • Effective research, writing, and courtroom advocacy skills
  • Ability to think critically and creatively in fast-paced settings
  • Effective judgment in zealous advocacy and willingness to strategically challenge authority in defense of clients
  • Strong legal analytical skills 
  • Thoughtfulness in engaging non-legal resources to support clients
  • Strong communication and active listening skills
  • Ability to work independently as well as collaboratively with lawyers and non-lawyers alike from various practice areas in an interdisciplinary team-based environment
  • Ability to multitask, maintain order and meet deadlines in a fast-paced, high-stakes environment 
  • Meticulous attention to detail
  • Experience working in and with racially and ethnically marginalized communities of color targeted by systemic injustice
  • Ability to communicate effectively and respectfully with people from various backgrounds and experiences
  • Ability to receive feedback constructively, reflect and shift behavior accordingly
  • Ability to exercise excellent judgment, discretion, and confidentiality around sensitive issues
  • Commitment to raising one’s cultural consciousness and challenging oppressive practices on an interpersonal and institutional level

If hired, applicants must:

  • Sit for the New York State Bar Examination, or 
  • Submit the appropriate materials necessary for Pro Hac Vice admission or waiver

The Bronx Defenders (BxD) – an innovative, progressive, holistic indigent defense office in the South Bronx – seeks passionate law graduates and entry-level attorneys with a commitment to public defense to join our Family, Criminal, and…

Details at a Glance

  • Time Commitment
    Full Time Schedule
  • Application Deadline
    October 15, 2021
  • Education
    J.D. Required
  • Professional Level
    Entry level

Location

Temporarily Remote
Work must be performed in or near Bronx, NY
Associated Location
360 East 161st Street, Bronx, NY 10451, United States

How to Apply

To apply, please visit our Career Portal at the link provided, select the position of interest and upload your resume and a cover letter in one document when prompted. If writing a cover letter is not accessible to you, you may upload your resume as a document and separately upload a video or audio statement instead of a cover letter if that is more accessible to you. Your cover letter or video/audio statement should share why you want to do this work at our office, some key lived and/or professional experiences that have prepared you for this position, and any additional information you would like for us to consider. This information allows us to understand your distinct perspective, experience, and potential beyond the work history summarized on your resume. Your cover letter may be up to one page if written or up to 3 minutes if an audio/video statement. Please remember that you may submit a written cover letter or an audio/video, but not both, and applications without either will not be considered. The start date for this position is immediate or as soon as possible.

The application deadline is October 15th, 2021, but applications will be considered on a rolling basis and decisions will be made as soon as an appropriate candidate is identified.  


Please contact Thanisha Pariage, Recruiting and Hiring Manager, via email at Thanishap@bronxdefenders.org with any questions regarding the position.



The Bronx Defenders is an equal opportunity employer and is cultivating an anti-oppressive workplace that embraces staff with a diversity of backgrounds, identities, and experiences. We acknowledge the ways in which systemic oppression and injustice can undermine access to professional opportunities and are committed to conducting hiring and promotion processes that are equitable and accessible to those commonly excluded from the workforce. We do not discriminate against and in fact specifically encourage applicants from marginalized communities to apply, including those who identify as Black, Indigenous, people of color, queer, transgender, gender non-conforming, disabled, neurodivergent, and those directly impacted by criminal, civil, family and immigration legal systems. We value lived as well as professional experience and particularly welcome applications from the Bronx community that we work with.



To apply, please visit our Career Portal at the link provided, select the position of interest and upload your resume and a cover letter in one document when prompted. If writing a…

Join Idealist

Sign up today to save your favorite jobs and get email alerts when new ones are posted.