Staff Attorneys, Tenant Rights Coalition - Brooklyn Legal Services
Brooklyn Legal Services (“BLS”) seeks two (2) staff attorneys for its Housing Law Unit in the Tenant Rights Coalition.
Brooklyn Legal Services, part of Legal Services NYC (LSNYC), provides high-quality, innovative representation to address the pressing legal needs of Brooklyn’s diverse low-income population. BLS focuses on the problems that have the greatest impact on our clients — preserving affordable and decent housing, maintaining income support, redressing abusive lending and consumer practices, promoting family stability and mitigating the effects of domestic violence, and advocating for the disabled.
LSNYC prides itself on its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts. As a social justice organization, we are committed to fighting for a workplace that is as diverse, equitable, and inclusive as possible for everyone. Our DEI committee and numerous affinity groups work to foster collegial relationships among staff, and allow staff to explore and advocate for racial justice and anti-oppression growth within our organization and through our legal work. All employees are expected to learn about, seek to understand, and work to realize our DEI goals.
Our housing practice focuses on preserving affordable housing in Brooklyn for low- to moderate income tenants, with the goal of staving off gentrification and preventing the displacement of communities—particularly communities of color—that have anchored Brooklyn neighborhoods for generations. We achieve this goal through a blend of individual defense work and systemic affirmative litigation. For this position, Brooklyn Legal Services seeks staff attorneys to work with individuals and tenant groups to prevent evictions and support collective tenant action, often in partnership with community based organizers and tenant associations, as part of the Tenant Rights Coalition (“TRC”). The TRC is a citywide initiative dedicated to anti-displacement work in neighborhoods facing heighten gentrification and tenant displacement, in particular due to recent rezoning actions by the city. The TRC utilizes a movement lawyering model and involves close collaboration with tenant organizing groups. Brooklyn Legal Services’ TRC unit has nearly 40 staff comprised of supervisors, attorneys, paralegal advocates, and essential staff. Through individual eviction cases and affirmative building-based tenant action, the attorneys will be able to identify trends and have opportunity to collaborate with our Right to Counsel unit focusing on attacking racist and discriminatory practices by landlords, combating fraudulent MCI and IAI applications at DHCR, challenging rent overcharges in Supreme Court, bringing group HPs against landlords to obtain repairs for tenants, and filing affirmative litigation based on the FHA, ADA, and State and City Human Rights Law. We have deep ties to tenant organizing groups in the communities we serve and work hand-in-hand with them to ensure that our practice reflects the needs and desires of these communities.
Role & Responsibilities:
Attorneys in our housing practice have exciting opportunities to hone their skills as litigators in both the individual defense and affirmative litigation contexts. We thrive in providing quality representation to all clients, saving homes for over a thousand individuals and families in Brooklyn a year. The Staff Attorney will conduct intakes and represent tenants and groups in Housing Court eviction proceedings, administrative proceedings, Supreme Court actions against administrative agencies, impact litigation in Federal and other courts, and other litigation and non-litigation advocacy. The position requires participation in building canvassing, tenant meetings, and community outreach and education, which can be at night or on the weekend. The position may be located in our Bedford Stuyvesant or Brownsville offices.
LSNYC provides numerous opportunities for growth and professional development. Our Learning Center provides opportunities to earn free CLE credits and gain experience as a trainer.
Experience & Qualifications:
We seek an attorney admitted to the New York State Bar with:
- A demonstrated passion for social justice and a commitment to working with low-income communities and communities of color to advance equity;
- Excellent analytical, writing, and communication skills;
- Strong interest in working with clients in crisis;
- Strong organization skills and ability to handle diverse, fast paced, and high volume case load;
- Litigation experience (preferred);
- Fluency or strong proficiency in a second language (preferred); and
- Background in organizing or strong ties to Brooklyn low-income communities (preferred).
Please note, to safeguard the health and well-being of our employees and clients, LSNYC requires all employees to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, unless a medical or religious exemption is approved.
How to Apply:
Applicants should send a cover letter, resume, and two writing samples to Brooklyn-TRCsupervisors@lsnyc.org.
Please write “TRC Attorney” in the subject line of the email.
Salary and benefits are determined by the LS-NYC Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Legal Services NYC is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, people with disabilities, people over 40, and gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people are strongly encouraged to apply.
SALARY RANGE: $73,593-$133,304
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