Capital Region Homelessness Prevention COVID-19 Staff Attorney

 

STAFF ATTORNEY FOR CAPITAL REGION

Homelessness Prevention 

 

The Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, a nonprofit civil legal services program, is seeking experienced housing attorneys to prevent homelessness and the threat to housing caused by COVID 19 in the Capital Region of New York State.

 

Our mission is to fight for fairness, dignity, and justice for those living in poverty and for a society which is inclusive and equitable for all. We transform lives, build community, and empower people by using the law to address individual and systemic wrongs and inequities.

 

We seek attorneys who will be dedicated to our mission and will seek justice and fairness for households at risk of homelessness and who are suffering from financial and other hardships because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  We are skilled, creative, and compassionate advocates combining a passion to serve with the skills and will to address both individual and systemic injustice.  At this time, we are fully engaged in utilizing our legal skills to assist the low income community in addressing the harms caused by COVID -19, particularly the threat to housing due to the pandemic. We take pride in providing holistic services to our clients with a wide range of programs and substantive law expertise and are stepping up to assist our communities in this time of crisis.

 

We are an integral part of the legal and human service community and expect these attorneys will  be deeply involved in the network of government, community members, housing and shelter providers and others dedicated to combatting and preventing homelessness at a time when housing is more important than ever.

 

The positions are located in Albany, NY, the state capital, which is a lively family friendly city with a reasonable cost of living, excellent quality of life, and easy access to major metropolitan areas as well as year-round outdoor opportunities.  Our office is a collegial and supportive workplace, encouraging and supporting staff development.

 

Responsibilities:  The attorneys will implement LASNNY’s Homelessness Prevention response to the COVID -19 pandemic. The attorneys will provide legal assistance to eligible Capital Region households who are at risk of homelessness by preventing evictions, securing mainstream benefits, and making referrals to services which will enhance the household’s ability to maintain permanent housing. The attorneys will be actively involved in the communities’ efforts to maintain public health and safety by addressing homelessness during the pandemic.  The attorneys will be expected to participate  in the communities’ Coordinated Entry system and work collaboratively with government and nonprofit agencies, which provide supportive services, income, shelter, permanent supportive housing, homelessness prevention and  rapid rehousing services and financial assistance, to plan and provide assistance to the homeless and at risk residents of the Capital Region.

 

The attorneys will provide legal assistance in maintaining or securing permanent housing and the income necessary to retain permanent housing. Legal assistance will include eviction defense, asserting COVID-19 special protections for tenants and fully utilizing the law to preserve tenancies and keep people safe in housing. Additionally, the attorney will protect public and subsidized housing tenancies and subsidies, address utility shut offs or denials of service, and secure emergency assistance, ongoing temporary assistance and other income supports necessary to achieving housing stability. The attorney will be expected to provide a full range of legal services, including counsel and advice, referrals, representation in administrative hearings, affirmative and defensive litigation, systemic advocacy, community legal education, outreach and engagement and community lawyering.

 

The attorney will be expert in the Emergency Solutions Grant Program and HMIS ( Homeless Management Information System ) requirements and compliance therewith and will work collaboratively other LASNNY housing attorneys to ensure that efficient and effective legal assistance is provided which maximizes access to LAS services and addresses systemic issues that cause homelessness.

 

Requirements:  Admission to New York State Bar.  One to four years’ experience.  Applicants must demonstrate a strong commitment to helping poor and disadvantaged people overcome institutional barriers to employment, safety, housing, and income supports.  Must be intelligent, hardworking, careful, reliable, have good judgment, attention to detail and a demonstrated commitment and sensitivity to the low-income community. Must be able to communicate effectively with clients and staff, work independently and efficiently and be able to problem solve and work collaboratively with community partner agency staff.  Training or experience in community lawyering or community organizing or engagement, demonstrated strong listening and relationship building skills, experience, creativity and willingness to use varied legal and non-legal advocacy tools to advance community identified initiatives preferred.  Must be willing to travel throughout the 16 county service area and have a car and a clean valid New York driver’s license. Strong computer, administrative, reporting and data entry skills required.  Ability to speak Spanish a plus.

 

Salary Range:  $46,307 – $50,184 DOE   We are a unionized program and our fringe benefits are excellent.

 

Application Deadline November 5, 2020

 

Any applications that do not have a cover letter, resume and writing sample will not be considered.

 

To apply, please:

 

1) Complete the Application linked here, or the mobile-friendly application linked here

 

2) Complete the Demographic Survey linked here

 

We are Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer.  Minorities, women, the elderly, LGBTQ persons, Protected Veterans and people with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.