In-Prison Programs Attorney
About Root & Rebound: Root & Rebound (R&R) is a nonprofit reentry advocacy center whose mission is to transfer power and information from the policy and legal communities to the people most impacted by our criminal justice system through public education, direct legal services, and policy advocacy, so that the law serves, rather than harms, low-income communities and communities of color in the United States. We work to build innovative, holistic, and creative solutions to solve the reentry crisis across California and the United States. We offer a strong work culture of a supportive supervision and team-based collaboration, where people get to be challenged, receive ongoing professional development, and do impactful work.
Location & Expected Travel: This position is based out of our headquarters office in Oakland, CA. Over the course of the year, expect to travel into prisons and jails approximately 2-4 days each month, including regular weekend and evening programming.
Commitment: This is a full-time exempt position, beginning by June 1, 2019.
Position Overview: The In-Prison Programs Attorney will develop, facilitate, and enhance R&R’s reentry legal education and reentry services for people in CA state prisons and jails preparing to return home–mitigating the issues that thousands of people face each year when released, through early and impactful support.
The In-Prison Programs Attorney will be responsible for managing in-prison programming in two CA prisons (one for men where R&R has existing programs and one for women where the organization is expanding). The goals for participants of R&R’s in-prison programs include: 1) Build self-advocacy skills and knowledge for navigating barriers to reentry; 2) Develop a step-by-step reentry action plan, including connections to resources and services in the community tailored to individual needs; 3) Ensure success in reentry and reduce the likelihood of re-incarceration; 4) Intensive personal and leadership opportunities for participants to become role models, mentors and leaders both in prison and in their communities; and 5) Long-term access to R&R as a reentry resource center.
The Attorney will also expand R&R’s capacity to provide in-prison/jail education, trainings, and legal support across the state of California, building programs through partnership. The Attorney will be supervised by R&R’s Associate Director of Northern California Programs with peer support from R&R’s National Legal Education & Resource Coordinator. The Attorney will also manage R&R’s new In-Prison Programs Coordinator, to be hired by June 1, 2019.
Using the information and best practices learned from R&R’s in-prison and national education programs and the cutting edge resources the organization has created, the Attorney will develop materials, curricula, and tools to expand and enhance R&R’s legal resources. Additionally, the Attorney will provide direct services by corresponding with incarcerated people across CA, supporting them in coming home and reintegrating into their communities successfully.
The Attorney hired in this position will receive rigorous training, ongoing supervision and management support, with ample time to learn and utilize existing R&R reentry legal resources, in-prison curricula and materials, and holistic reentry legal assessment tools. The Attorney will also be integrated and trained in R&R’s management processes and “people managers’ community of practice” learning sessions.
Duties & Responsibilities:
Under the supervision of an R&R Associate Director, the In-Prison Programs Attorney role includes, but is not limited to, the following:
> In-Prison Programming:
- Manage in-prison reentry legal programming, with a focus on programs in two California state prisons, CCC-Susanville (men’s prison with existing R&R reentry programs) and CCWF-Chowchilla (women’s prison where R&R is expanding its in-prison reentry programs) through legal trainings and workshops, reentry planning for each of the participants, and correspondence with students and alumni of the programs.
- Work collaboratively with R&R’s partners who will join us in building collaborative, holistic, and wraparound support for the participants in our programs.
- Oversee the development of an in-prison reentry education curriculum and in-prison reentry toolkit that can be scaled across the state of California.
- Ensure a strong alumni program and correspondence program for CCC Susanville (via phone and letter mail), to sustain the program through ‘Reentry Navigators’ at the prison.
> Reentry Support and Social Services Connections:
- Leveraging R&R’s existing in-prison curricula, social service referral lists, and cutting edge reentry planning resources, develop individualized reentry plans for in-prison program participants at CCC and CCWF, connecting them to social services, reentry organizations, and relevant resources (e.g., public benefits, housing, food, etc.) before they are released.
- Build and maintain strong relationships with community partners and CDCR liaisons to create strong community supports for the men and women returning home
> Reentry Hotline, Prison Mail and Direct Services Work:
- Serve as part of the frontline support team on R&R’s weekly Reentry Hotline by conducting holistic reentry legal intakes, helping currently and formerly incarcerated callers identify and navigate reentry barriers, and advocating for clients needs across a variety of reentry issues (including those covered in R&R’s Roadmap to Reentry Guide)
- Conduct research and provide creative, zealous and holistic legal support for clients’ reentry legal questions
- Help maintain a strong referral and resource database for the hotline
- Ensure that R&R has strong materials and organizational systems to respond to information and resource requests from incarcerated people who write to R&R.
> Grant Administration:
- Track deliverables for all grants and support the submission of progress reports
- Attend CDCR Innovating Programming Grant summits and meetings
- Liaise as needed with grant administrators
> People Management:
- Manage and coach the In-Prison Education Coordinator (and any future direct reports to be hired) by adhering to R&R’s management structures (once trained on these processes and structures).
- Receive ongoing coaching, management support, and both internal and external professional development opportunities.
- This will include:
- Holding weekly check-ins;
- Hiring/onboarding new direct reports, as needed;
- Conducting two performance reviews for direct report annually;
- Connecting direct report to relevant performance management and professional development opportunities.
- 1-4 years out of law school
- Licensed attorney, and in good standing, in California
- Demonstrated commitment to social and racial justice and criminal justice/reentry reform
- Desire to work in a dynamic and diverse team environment.
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office and Google products (Gmail, Google Calendar, Drive)
- Excellent time-management and communication skills
- Flexible, adaptable, and able to prioritize work given organizational and client needs
- Ability to incorporate clear direction and supervision
- Team-based and collaborative approach to work
- Responsible and reliable with a positive, professional, and humble attitude
- Strong work ethic with the initiative to design creative solutions to advance our work
- Love of teaching, public speaking and training is a must
- Zealous advocate for clients
- Strong problem-solving skills
- Creative, enthusiastic, and willing to learn and try new things
- Driver’s license preferred
- Ability to and excitement to travel regularly to prisons, jails, and rural and under-resourced parts of the state, including approximately 2-4 days per month
Compensation & Benefits: This position will begin as a full-time position with a competitive salary commensurate with experience, where our base salary for an entry level attorney is $60,000. The position includes employment benefits including medical, vision, and dental care; three weeks of paid time off per year plus holiday closures; and ongoing professional development opportunities.
Application Instructions: To apply for this position, please send: 1) a resume, 2) cover letter, 3) two short writing samples (one legal writing sample; and one writing sample of your choice written for a layperson audience), and 4) three references with contact information in an email to Eva DeLair at firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. No phone calls, please.
Root & Rebound is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from all qualified individuals including formerly incarcerated and/or system-involved individuals, people of color, persons with disabilities, ethnic and religious minorities, women, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and gender variant individuals.