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Advocacy Coordinator | Crime Victim Services

 
Northwest Justice Project (NJP) receives funds from the federal Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) through the State Office of Civil Legal Aid to provide free civil legal services to victims of crime. Consistent with the Integrated Civil Legal Aid to Crime Victims Plan, VOCA funding supports more than 30 dedicated crime victim attorneys and advocates at NJP and six other legal aid programs throughout the state of Washington. To ensure the most effective, efficient and strategic use of VOCA funding and to support the advocacy work of all VOCA-funded legal aid advocates throughout the state, NJP seeks to hire a qualified lawyer for the position of statewide Advocacy Coordinator – Crime Victim Services (AC-CVS). 
 
The AC-CVS supports VOCA-funded attorneys throughout the state deliver high quality representation and legal assistance in a range of substantive legal problems experienced by crime victims. These include protections from domestic violence, sexual assault and other violent crimes, safety planning and the preservation of housing, employment, health benefits, public assistance, education, childcare, and other basic needs, as well as immigration protection. 
 
The AC-CVS works as part of an experienced legal team to support affirmative advocacy and creative, systemic solutions to promote the long-term well-being of Washington’s low-income individuals, families and communities. The AC-CVS’s responsibilities include consultation and coordination with the Office of Civil Legal Aid’s (OCLA) Crime Victims Legal Aid Program Manager; strategic leadership; advocacy and project planning, refining and implementing crime victim advocacy priorities and representation protocols; expanding coordination and partnership with other VOCA-funded legal aid organizations and advocates as well as community-based crime victim advocates; data collection, grant management and reporting; development and support of a trauma-informed statewide community of practice among VOCA-funded attorneys and advocates; and, training and professional development of VOCA related advocate staff. This is a full-time position. Service responsibilities are statewide; travel is required.
 
The AC-CVS serves as part of NJP’s statewide leadership team. All those in leadership positions at NJP are expected to embrace NJP’s commitment to race equity and commit to their own growth and development with respect to equity and inclusion.  
 
Specific Duties:
  • Regularly consult and coordinate strategic statewide and specific VOCA-funded project-based crime victim initiatives with the OCLA Crime Victims Legal Aid Program Manager.
  • Identify, assess and communicate emerging issues, unmet client legal needs, including needs unique to crime victims who experience particular barriers to accessing the justice systems.  Develop and promote effective advocacy strategies in cooperation with program staff and VOCA-funded civil legal aid partners.  
  • Help refine and implement advocacy priorities and service delivery protocols addressing crime victims’ civil legal needs in collaboration with NJP staff, other VOCA-funded civil legal aid providers and community partners throughout Washington. 
  • Monitor implementation of proven delivery models (e.g. Integrated Rural Legal Assistance Program) replicated in varying and diverse geographic areas in partnership with other legal aid organizations and domestic violence and sexual assault victim services providers.  
  • Support the ongoing development of Project Safety, a new service delivery model in King County designed to connect victims working with prosecutor-based advocates in the criminal or protection order systems with a civil legal aid attorney through a navigator.  
  • Develop training opportunities specific to the civil legal needs of crime victims to expand expertise and increase the capacity of VOCA-funded legal aid attorneys to provide high quality, trauma-informed representation of crime victims. 
  • Facilitate regular meetings of VOCA advocates providing civil legal aid services in Washington to (1) coordinate activities within the civil legal services delivery system, (2) engage in information-sharing and identification of issues in need of strategic advocacy to achieve crime victim community goals, (3) develop and promote effective strategies to maximize client service delivery through collaborative working relationships, and (4) meet ongoing training and support needs for high quality and efficient representation of crime victims throughout the legal aid delivery system in Washington.
  • Complete quarterly case data reports and an annual narrative report of VOCA grant funded activities.  
  • Encourage and support advocacy to identify and address racial inequity in all arenas (litigation, policy work, committee/group participation, community outreach and education, client and advocate resource materials).
  • Assist individual advocates, task forces, and work groups to define and develop strategies to secure client objectives, to resolve potential inconsistencies in client representation strategies, and to ensure compliance with funding requirements, professional responsibility and ethical obligations, and/or competing interests of client communities.
  • Facilitate cross-program advocacy teams and help to strengthen and support non-litigation projects including community legal education, client/community/program relations, collaboration with bar and court-related access to justice activities, and similar activities that promote and expand access to justice for low income crime victims throughout the state.
  • Help assess professional development needs and provide feedback on individual advocate performance. 
  • Work with NJP senior attorneys and advocates to ensure that client representation and advocacy activities are effective, efficient, and make economical use of program resources consistent with the program mission and Washington Access to Justice Board's Hallmarks and State Plan. 
  • Help carry out program initiatives to meet NJP objectives as a dynamic statewide law firm empowering clients and combating injustice in all forms. 
Qualifications:
 
  • Experience working with and/or connection to low and moderate income crime victims and an understanding of their civil legal needs, including the unique needs of populations that experience particular barriers to justice systems, and an understanding of effective approaches for addressing those needs.
  • Significant expertise in substantive law impacting the civil legal issues most often confronting crime victims.  Expertise in domestic violence, family law, sexual assault, housing, consumer, employment, civil rights and access to justice issues more broadly is especially helpful.
  • Demonstrated experience in project planning and coordination across programs.
  • Ability to communicate, motivate and work collaboratively with diverse groups of people.
  • Must be culturally competent and have an interest in working with crime victim and other client communities NJP serves.  Experience working across different cultural backgrounds is strongly preferred. 
  • Demonstrated experience and/or connection with NJP’s client communities is preferred. The Northwest Justice Project is especially interested in qualified candidates whose professional, personal and/or service experience allow them to contribute to and support the legal aid community’s commitment to race equity. 
  • Initiative, creativity and problem-solving abilities; not averse to risk, and able to embrace change and uncertainty.
  • Ability and willingness to learn and integrate new technologies and methodologies to increase efficiency. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong work ethic and commitment to working as a team 
  • Minimum eight years of substantive litigation or other advocacy experience including demonstrated experience working with crime victims (civil legal aid environment is a plus).
  • Member of Washington State Bar or ability to obtain membership through reciprocity.
Salary depends on experience. Overall compensation package is competitive within local public interest community; excellent benefits and work environment.
 
Resume and letter of interest in position should be sent to Karen Holland at karenh@nwjustice.org. Application materials should specifically identify examples of relevant work applicant has handled, including whether as lead or co-counsel, project implementation, grant management and reporting, training, CLE presentations on legal topics related to protection of crime victims. Applications should be submitted by June 21, 2018; however, the position will remain open until filled.
 
NJP is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and fosters an environment free of barriers and discriminatory practices. NJP actively promotes mutual respect, acceptance, teamwork and productivity. NJP is committed to maintaining an organization whose staff, Board and clients are diverse in background, experience, race, color, national origin, gender, age, religious reference, marital status, sexual orientation, sensory, mental or physical abilities, veteran status, and other qualities that strengthen the program while reinforcing its commitment to basic fairness. People of color, people who identify as transgender, lesbian, gay, or bisexual, and those with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Individuals needing a reasonable accommodation for the application or interview process or for more information about the project should contact Karen Holland at (206) 707-0802.