The International Rescue Committee (IRC) helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future. Founded in 1933, the IRC is at work today in more than 40 countries and in 26 U.S. cities. The IRC’s Resettlement, Asylum and Integration (RAI) department creates opportunities for refugees and other vulnerable migrants to survive and thrive in the US. RAI serves nearly 50,000 individuals each year in the US through a diverse portfolio of programs aimed at achieving outcomes in five impact areas: Health, Safety, Economic Wellbeing, Education, and Power.
In operation since 1975, the IRC Northern California has successfully resettled more than 65,000 refugees, asylees, and other immigrants from over 50 countries. Since its establishment, IRC NorCal has grown into a trusted community-based service provider, serving an array of low-income immigrant populations with a robust portfolio of services to help clients achieve economic self-sufficiency and integrate into their new communities. After becoming DOJ-recognized/accredited in 1979, IRC NorCal began offering immigration services to refugees, and since that time has expanded over the last 20 years to serve the broader immigrant population in Northern California.
The IRC seeks a Senior Staff Attorney to join the IRC in Northern California at a time of program expansion and innovation. The attorney will bring several years of experience representing Asylum Seekers, superb legal judgment and legal ethics, an ability to work independently while recognizing the value of collaboration and cross-referencing with other experts, and a passion for this area of work. The Senior Staff Attorney will provide legal consultations and direct legal representation in affirmative applications before the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), such as applications for asylum, family-based adjustment of status, U-visas, T-visas, Temporary Protected Status, etc. The attorney may represent a limited number of respondents in removal proceedings. In effort to maximize Legal Services available to immigrants, the attorney may provide legal services through limited scope clinics to offer wide-scale legal support to the community. The IRC NorCal conducts outreach to larger immigrant groups through Know Your Rights presentations, our Welcome Center, flyers, and other outreach efforts. The goal of these outreach and consultation efforts is to provide underserved individuals with an understanding of different immigration relief available, the importance of citizenship, immigrant rights and immigration laws, and resources available through the IRC and other community partners. The Staff Attorney will engage with these outreach efforts as well.
The position will be based in our Oakland IRC office, but the attorney will work in close collaboration with the IRC NorCal Immigration Team, which includes offices in Oakland, Sacramento, San Jose, and Turlock, as well as IRC’s HQ Legal Services Technical Unit (TU), which oversees and supports IRC’s 24 legal service programs across the US. The position will report to the Managing Attorney and may supervise Legal Assistants and interns.
Direct Legal Representation
Conduct intakes with IRC clients and members of the community and provide direct legal representation to individuals before the USCIS and the USCIS Asylum Office.
May provide representation to respondents in removal proceedings.
Possible opportunity to recruit and mentor small number of pro bono attorneys who want to enter full representation on asylum cases or removal proceedings.
Lead and provide legal supervision at legal clinics. Recruit pro bono attorneys and other legal volunteers to participate in legal clinics, as well as coordinate logistics for the clinics, such as interpretation and translation services.
Coordinate closely within IRC’s multidisciplinary teams to identify needs and facilitate referrals to services offered in-house and through partnerships with external providers.
Ensure client and program data is collected consistently, managed appropriately, and reported accurately in accordance with program reporting requirements set by IRC.
Maintain up-to-date knowledge and expertise of changing asylum and immigration policies through independent research and Analysis, regular trainings, and peer-to-peer consultation.
Conduct trainings for IRC staff and/or externally as needed.
Work collaboratively as part of the IRC NorCal Immigration team.
Participate in community-based coalitions related to immigrant rights.
Serve as a strong advocate for humanitarian immigrants.
Community Partnerships and Workshops
- Create and maintain a viable outreach strategy to cultivate and maintain strong relationships with community-based organization, local immigration attorneys, and nonprofit legal providers.
- Collaborate with other IRC departments and partners to offer community-based workshops or information sessions when demand exceeds capacity to provide direct legal representation.
KEY WORKING RELATIONSHIPS:
Position Reports to: Managing Attorney
Position Directly Supervises: Legal Assistants and Legal Interns
- Law degree (JD or LLM) from an ABA-accredited U.S. institution and admission to any state bar.
- At least three years of experience providing direct representation before USCIS to asylum applicants or other immigrants seeking humanitarian relief, and at least three years of experience representing respondents in removal proceedings.
- Excellent research, writing, analytical, and organizational skills, and excellent legal judgment.
- Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills. Trauma-informed and sensitive listening and communication skills.
- Evidence of capacity to be a strong team member in a highly collaborative multidisciplinary environment. Desire to join a team working to protect due process and immigrant rights.
- Deep commitment to Humanitarian Law.
- Personal integrity in handling ethically complex and confidential situations.
- Strong computer literacy, research, and analysis skills.
- Must have ability to travel frequently in and around the service area to engage with the community and attend court hearings, USCIS interviews and relevant partner and stakeholder meetings.
Posted pay ranges apply to US-based candidates. Ranges are based on various factors including the labor market, job type, internal equity, and budget. Exact offers are calibrated by work location, individual candidate experience and skills relative to the defined job requirements.
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 new hires to furnish proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be considered for any in-office or hybrid positions. All IRC US offices require full vaccination to attend any in-office functions (e.g., meetings, trainings).
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.
US Benefits: 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