Job Opportunity – Staff Attorney

About the Youth Law Center

The Youth Law Center (YLC) is a national impact legal advocacy organization based in San Francisco. For 40 years, YLC has advocated to transform the child welfare and juvenile justice systems which are charged with the care of vulnerable children and youth. YLC advocacy strategies include policy advocacy, litigation, administrative advocacy, research and public education, training, and technical assistance. Further information about YLC and our activities is available on our website at

About this Opportunity

YLC is seeking a full-time, exempt Staff Attorney for a one-year project (with strong possibility for extension contingent upon funding availability) to improve housing stability and prevent homelessness among vulnerable children and youth involved in and/or exiting the foster care and juvenile justice systems.

The Staff Attorney will be part of a team of attorneys and advocates working on a variety of areas, such as protecting children and youth in the child welfare and juvenile justice systems from abuse and dangerous conditions in out-of-home care; ensuring that government and other agencies provide support and services (e.g., health, mental health, education) to enable system-involved youth to become healthy and productive adults; and ensuring youth in both systems have individualized, developmentally-appropriate parenting as well as connections to permanent families and to their communities.

The Staff Attorney will work primarily from our San Francisco office during our regular business hours of 9am – 5pm, Monday through Friday. Some flexibility for remote work and alternative scheduling is available.

Experience & Qualifications

The successful candidate for this position will possess the following:

  • A JD degree, and current or pending admission to the California State Bar
  • One to five years’ experience, which may include time in clerkships, internships, and fellowships
  • Ability to think strategically and analytically
  • Some substantive knowledge of child welfare and/or juvenile justice systems and issues, and a commitment to and passion for reform
  • Creativity, passion, and vision to challenge the status quo
  • Ability to work well with diverse groups of people, including families and youth
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Excellent legal research and writing skills
  • Capacity to take initiative on identified goals and to work independently
  • Adaptability and responsiveness to changing environments and priorities
  • Comfort with communicating and collaborating with remote staff
  • Ability to travel within the Bay Area and state of California as needed for projects, and to travel nationally on an infrequent basis for conferences or other special events

We strongly encourage people of color and individuals who themselves were involved in the child welfare or juvenile justice systems when they were young to apply.

Compensation & Benefits

The salary range for this position is $63,000 – $75,000, depending on experience. YLC is proud to offer an excellent benefits package including medical, dental, vision, and basic life/LTD coverage, as well as Commuter Check, health and dependent care FSA, and 401(k) options. Currently, health insurance premiums are 100% employer-paid.

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and three professional references via email to To help us better understand your qualifications, please make sure to address the following questions in your cover letter:

  • Why are you interested in this position and what do you believe you will bring to YLC’s work?
  • YLC believes it is critical for our advocacy to be informed by the experiences and recommendations of those who are directly impacted. How do you think this principle can be applied to work toward ensuring housing stability and preventing homelessness for system-involved youth?

Applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Review of applications will begin as they are received and will continue on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Applicants selected to move forward will be contacted to schedule an initial screening. No phone calls about this position, please.

The Youth Law Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Staff Attorney
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