Americans for Immigrant Justice (AI Justice), an award-winning not-for-profit legal services organization founded in 1996 to protect and promote the basic human rights of immigrants, has a multicultural and a multilingual staff. AI Justice has represented clients from around the world and is recognized as a powerful advocate and national leader for immigrants' rights. AI Justice works closely with traditional civil rights groups as well as grassroots organizations and local, state and national government officials to affect positive change in immigration policies.
The Family Defense Program:
The Family Defense Program (FDP) informs and empowers mixed-status families and long-time residents whose futures are uncertain due to the erosion of protections for Dreamers, TPS recipients, and immigrants in general.
With its signature combination of community outreach and direct representation, FDP staff fight to keep Florida families safe and together.
Through legal screening clinics and Know Your Rights presentations, the FDP team bridges gaps in access to legal services and dispels rampant misinformation. FDP staff and volunteers travel to communities throughout South Florida so immigrants can receive trustworthy one-on-one legal assistance without having to travel long distances, take time off work or arrange childcare.
With help from our network of pro bono attorneys and interpreters, staff have served thousands of immigrants, often helping them on their pathway to permanent residency and citizenship through direct representation.
Even those who are not eligible for immigration relief under current laws receive critical information about how to protect themselves against fraud, better understand their rights, and monitor policy changes that could impact their case for relief.
General Responsibilities: Under the supervision of the Deputy Director, the Family Defense Program Director supervises attorneys, a DOJ Accredited Representative, and a Legal Administrative Assistant rendering legal services to indigent clients according to their needs, funding, and consistent with applicable law.
The position also involves organizing community education and group processing programs, engaging with media and elected officials, executing grant deliverables, participating in policy and advocacy work, and supervising law students and volunteers.
Specific Duties: The Family Defense Program Director shall:
Determine case acceptance by reviewing intakes and interview notes, considering grant requirements, case acceptance priorities, and attorney/DOJ representative caseloads;
Manage the caseloads and supervise the work of attorneys and DOJ Accredited Representative through weekly case review meetings;
Interview, advise and represent income eligible clients before the Immigration Court and the USCIS in immigration matters;
Make appropriate referrals to assist clients in obtaining legal representation in non-immigration areas, such as public benefits, health, housing, employment and education;
Work closely with the Deputy Director, Grant Coordinator, and development staff to prepare grant applications; ensure compliance with grant requirements and county, state and federal contracts; and prepare narrative and other reports as required by funding agencies;
Participate in community education programs and Know Your Rights presentations regarding rights, responsibilities, and immigration updates;
Plan and assist partners with execution of group processing clinics and events;
Establish contacts and relationships with courts, bar, associations, other legal services programs, legislative bodies, governmental agencies, community organizations, and low income groups;
Identify laws, policies, and practices which adversely affect and diminish the rights and benefits of immigrants, and work with others to devise creative strategies for addressing these problems;
Supervise, delegate and review the work of law students, interns and volunteers so that their work is helpful to AI Justice and results in a beneficial learning experience for them; and
Perform other job-related duties as assigned.
Minimum 5 years of experience representing in low-income immigrants before USCIS, EOIR, and the BIA, including extensive experience in removal defense and appeals.
Licensed to practice law in any state – Florida Bar membership preferred.
Fluent in Spanish or Haitian Creole.
Strong writing, research and analytical skills; strong communication and group leadership skills
Interest in policy advocacy at the national level.
Excellent presentation skills for community outreach, education, and training.
Experience working managing and mentoring volunteers and pro bono attorneys.
Enthusiastic about and committed to working alongside people from diverse cultural, educational, professional, and socioeconomic backgrounds. A demonstrated belief in diversity, inclusion, and equity for all individuals.
Comfortable working in a collaborative environment that values giving and receiving feedback.
Must have own transportation.
Must be willing to submit to an extensive background check, including FBI, statewide repository, and sex offender registry checks.
How to apply:
AI Justice is an EOE/AA employer and we strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, women, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, people with disabilities, and other historically underrepresented groups. We value strength in diversity and inclusion within our office and are actively working towards providing an inclusive, equitable, and welcoming environment free from discrimination for all.
Please submit cover letter, resume, and 3 references to firstname.lastname@example.org, with subject line "FDP Program Director"
Interviews: Top candidates will be invited to interview and submit references.
APPLICATION DEADLINE: OPEN UNTIL FILLED
Additional Salary Information: Salary commensurate with experience. AI Justice offers a comprehensive benefits package, including excellent health, vision, and dental coverage; 15 paid days of vacation leave; 12 paid holidays; 10 paid sick days; and 3% employer contribution to 403(b) retirement plan after 1 year of employment.
About Americans for Immigrant Justice
Americans for Immigrant Justice (AI Justice - formerly FIAC), a not-for-profit law firm founded in 1996 to protect and promote the basic human rights of immigrants, has a multicultural and multilingual staff. AI Justice has represented clients from around the world and is recognized as a powerful advocate and national leader for immigrant rights. AI Justice works closely with traditional civil rights organizations as well as with grassroots organizations and local, state and national government officials to affect positive change in immigration policies.