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Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a leader in the fight against hate and bigotry in the United States, is seeking nominations and applications for the role of Senior Supervising Attorney (SSA), Children’s Rights in Alabama. Joining a legal team that uses impact litigation and policy advocacy as its primary tools to relentlessly pursue justice and equal rights, the Senior Supervising Attorney will lead the development and implementation of SPLC’s children’s right work in Alabama and build and manage a highly-talented team in using all possible tools, including litigation, legislative campaigns, and public advocacy to advance the rights of children across the state.
As fear, political and cultural division, hatred, and economic uncertainty persist in the American consciousness and manifest in discriminatory policies, speech, and actions, individuals across the country are reigniting their commitment to justice for all. Southern Poverty Law Center’s Legal Department is growing in response to the increased demand to protect Americans whose civil rights are being threatened in cities and states across the country. Over the last 12 months, the growth of this team has been unprecedented. Under the direction of Legal Director Rhonda Brownstein and Deputy Legal Director Zoe Savitsky, the Children’s Rights practice area is growing to meet the increased demands for justice for children across the south and nationally, with a clear focus on ensuring that vulnerable children in the Deep South have access to the resources they need—particularly education and health services—to grow and thrive, and that they are neither excluded from nor denied such resources due to their background or characteristics. Vulnerable children in SPLC’s states are pushed into the school to prison pipeline at disproportionate rates, attend school in under-resourced education systems, and often have little or no access to vital health services. And in SPLC’s states, the forces of deregulation and privatization are working to destroy the most important institution for building a democratic society, public schools.
The Senior Supervising Attorney, Children’s Rights (Alabama) works in collaboration with the Deputy Legal Director to execute the SPLC’s vision and strategy for children’s rights work in the state. With the DLD, the SSA will build and supervise a dedicated team of staff attorneys, policy counsel, advocates, support staff, and others as they use every possible tool to challenge the privatization of public education and the structural inequalities that disproportionately direct vulnerable children from the classroom and toward prison, educate them in unjustly inadequate schools, and prevent them from accessing the services they need to flourish in their communities.
Specifically, the Senior Supervising Attorney will be responsible for developing and litigating impact cases in Alabama state courts and in federal courts, at both trial and appellate levels. The SSA will engage in litigation and public advocacy related to children’s rights issues, particularly relating to the school to prison pipeline, educational equity, and children’s health services (focusing on mental health care). This may include but will not be limited to: addressing disproportionality and discrimination in school discipline, referrals to alternative school, suspensions, expulsion, and school-based arrest; curbing seclusion and restraint; pushing back against school-imposed fines and citations; addressing a variety of equity issues (school funding, deregulation, privatization, school vouchers, segregation/re-segregation); and improving children’s access to Medicaid and other vital health services.
The ideal candidate will be an exceptionally talented impact litigator, strategist, and manager with a deep personal passion for pursuing justice on behalf of vulnerable children. He/she/they will have an understanding of the challenges facing children in Alabama or states with similar demographic, social, and legal contexts and a natural intellectual curiosity to pursue new learnings and knowledge. He/she/they will bring at least seven (7) years of litigation experience and two (2) years successfully managing and leading a highly-talented team and be barred or willing to sit for the next bar exam in Alabama.
This search is being conducted with assistance from Katherine Jacobs, Callie Carroll, and Erica Nicole Griffin of Nonprofit Professionals Advisory Group. Candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible, and applications will be reviewed as they are received. Please send nominations and/or applications including cover letter describing your interest and qualifications, your resume (in Word format), and where you learned of the position to: SPLC-ChildRights@nonprofitprofessionals.com. Southern Poverty Law Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Candidates of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.