Holistic Defense Attorney (Juvenile or Emerging Adult)
Chicago, IL 
Posted 1 month ago
Position No Longer Available
Position No Longer Available
Job Description
Status:Full-time ExemptReports to:Holistic Defense Legal Team SupervisorSalary:Commensurate with experienceHire Date:LCLC will close the posting as soon as we find an exceptional candidateWHO WE ARELawndale Christian Legal Center (LCLC) specializes in providing a unique form of holistic community- based criminal defense representation grounded in restorative justice principles to minors and emerging adults (24 and under) from North Lawndale. This highly relational and innovative model is performed by an interdisciplinary team of attorneys, case managers, outreach workers, and strategic community partners that provide developmentally appropriate supports for minors and emerging adults. The team identifies and meets the various needs of our youth at every phase of the criminal justice system: from diversion, arrest, through trial, and the completion of any period of probation, supervision, or parole, and beyond. By serving justice-involved minors and emerging adults holistically in their community, LCLC is leading the transformation of the traditional criminal justice system and establishing new best practices in community-based holistic interventions grounded in restorative justice that are more effective, cost less, and result in greater public safety for all. We believe our holistic, community-led (approximately 70% of our staff and Board of Directors are from North Lawndale) restorative justice model will transform the criminal justice system and end mass incarceration. More information on LCLC can be found at NORTH LAWNDALENorth Lawndale is a vibrant and resilient community and we are proud to be a part of it. Our office is located just next door to the Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Apartments and Exhibit Center, built on the site where Dr. King lived for six months during his Chicago Freedom Campaign in 1966. North Lawndale is tightly-knit, and we are gratified by our affiliation with the Lawndale Community Church, an organization that has done so much to bring necessary health and legal services to the community. Unfortunately, following decades of disinvestment, white flight , redlining, and other harbingers of systemic poverty and violence, North Lawndale still suffers from high levels of poverty, economic hardship, violence, and over- policing.In North Lawndale, approximately 850 officers are assigned to the two police districts that patrol 35,000 residents. In addition, a significant percentage of specialized units (which are historically aggressive and abusive) have been ordered to rove in our community. More than 1,500 youth are arrested in North Lawndale yearly, the second highest rate in Chicago. Indiscriminate stops and searches of North Lawndale residents are a daily occurrence; 66% of adults surveyed perceived no legitimate reason for their most recent police stop. A startling 59% of adults in North Lawndale have been arrested, 30% convicted, and 27% jailed.Despite the seemingly insurmountable odds that our youths encounter within North Lawndale, namely the violence, poverty, and police brutality, they demonstrate hope, resolve, and a drive to make their neighborhood a better place. We are continually inspired by our clients resilience and positivity in the face of external challenges. It is both an honor and a privilege to help them walk them away from the criminal justice system and equip them to take control of their future.JOB DESCRIPTIONLCLC s Holistic Defense Attorney is passionate about representing youth in court. The attorney s primary responsibility will be to provide LCLC s unique model of holistic, community-based, zealous, and competent legal representation to youth from North Lawndale charged with felonies and misdemeanors. Attorneys partner with case managers, outreach workers, and community allies to provide holistic, restorative legal defense services in juvenile court. Every youth is supported by two attorneys (primary and secondary), a case manager, street outreach support, and connections to wrap around services from community partners. The Attorney reports to the Holistic Defense Legal Team Supervisor.RESPONSIBILITIESZealous representation of indigent youth at all stages of juvenile and/or criminal court proceedingsVisiting police stations when a client is in custody (including weekends and evenings)Appearing in court for all hearings, from detention to probation status checksConducting or directing case investigations, including witness interviews and scene visitsResearching, writing, and litigating pre-trial motionsServing as first or second chair in hearings and trialsCreating mitigation packets to create a powerful and genuine narrative about a client to use in plea negotiations, with an eye towards avoiding permanent felony convictions and incarcerationWorking closely with LCLC s social services staff, legal interns, and partners to ensure that needed legal and social services are integrated and coordinated for clientsCollaborating with North Lawndale Community Restorative Justice Hub partners and Cook County system partners to serve our clients holistically and coordinate referralsCollaborating with pro bono partners on cases at the direction of the Holistic Defense Team SupervisorUtilizing current social science research about adolescents and emerging adults in approach to clients, court advocacy, and negotiationsKeeping updated and detailed paper and electronic files and database recordsContinuously seeking professional development through trainingsAttending meetings internally and with other organizations and agenciesQUALIFICATIONS & REQUIREMENTSLicensed to practice in Illinois or eligibility for admission to the Illinois barTwo to ten years of juvenile or criminal defense trial experienceStrong trial advocacy skillsExcellent research and writing skillsPassion for social justice, particularly as it relates to the criminal justice systemCultural sensitivity ability to work with a diverse staff, clients, and community partnersHighly resourceful and able to initiate and manage multiple projects and deadlinesAbility to work in a fast-paced, team-oriented environmentAbility to work independently and effectively manage an active caseloadAbility to perform in high stress situationsAbility to collaborate with an interdisciplinary teamFamiliarity with restorative justice practices a plusWillingness to work evenings and weekends as necessaryValid driver s license, car, and proof of insurance requiredIndividuals from, or with connections to, North Lawndale or adjacent neighborhoods will be given special considerationWillingness to live in North Lawndale preferredMinorities encouraged to applyAPPLICATIONPlease submit a cover letter, resume, writing sample, transcript of court proceedings in which you appeared (if available), and a list of three references to: Cathryn Crawford, Director of Holistic Legal Services. Include position title in email subject. The position, which is available immediately, will remain open until filled.Lawndale Christian Legal Center is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, marital status, age, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, pregnancy, genetic information, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, veteran status, or any other status protected under federal, state, or local law. All aspects of employment including the decision to hire, promote, discipline, or discharge, will be based on merit, competence, performance, and organizational needs. Our goal is to be a diverse workforce that is representative of those we serve.North Lawndale residents and minorities encouraged to apply.


Position No Longer Available
Job Summary
Lawndale Christian Legal Center
Start Date
As soon as possible
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Required Experience
2 to 10 years
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