Advancing Justice through Community Lawyering in New York City

New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI), a non-profit civil rights legal organization, is accepting applications from candidates for post-graduate fellowship opportunities in its Health Justice, Disability Justice, and Environmental Justice programs. The Fellowship would begin in the fall of 2020.

NYLPI pioneered the practice of community lawyering in New York City, based on the premise that every New Yorker has the basic civil right to thrive.  With every case and campaign, we partner with members of marginalized communities on advocacy that is ambitious, participatory, and dynamic.

NYLPI’s Health Justice Program represents immigrant and individuals in detention with serious health care needs; brings a race and immigrant justice lens to healthcare advocacy in New York; and addresses the social determinants of health so that all New Yorkers can live a healthy life. Our Disability Justice Program defends and promotes the civil rights of people with disabilities in all aspects of life, including housing, education, transportation, and criminal justice, and ensures that people with disabilities are able to live independently and with dignity in the community.  Our Environmental Justice Program works in partnership with community groups and city-wide coalitions to eliminate the unfair burden of environmental hazards borne by low-income communities and communities of color, and to create a more equitable and sustainable city.

The Application Process: NYLPI seeks highly accomplished, progressive, community-minded candidates with excellent research and writing skills to advance our programs’ goals.

Public interest fellowship programs such as Equal Justice Works and the Skadden Fellowship Foundation provide two-year fellowships to graduating law students, outgoing judicial clerks and, in the case of Equal Justice Works, experienced attorneys who are motivated to work at a public interest legal organization.  We also welcome applicants who may be eligible for other fellowship programs. The fellowship programs are competitive, and applicants need time to develop project proposals and complete applications. NYLPI thus strongly encourages all interested applicants to apply to NYLPI as early as possible, but no later than July 26, 2019. Candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, writing sample, most recent transcript (official or unofficial) and three references, including daytime telephone numbers, to Laura Redman at fellowships@nylpi.org.

Candidates with fellowship project ideas are encouraged to discuss them in the cover letter, but it is not necessary to have a developed project proposal to apply.  NYLPI has successfully sponsored numerous fellows in the past and works closely with candidates to craft effective proposals and prepare for fellowship interviews.  Applications will be reviewed by NYLPI on a rolling basis.

About NYLPI

For more than 40 years, NYLPI has been a leading civil rights advocate for New Yorkers marginalized by race, immigration status, poverty, disabilities, and neighborhood pollution. NYLPI pioneered the practice of community lawyering in the five boroughs of New York City. These communities shape our priorities, and their struggles for justice demand innovative solutions. Our interdisciplinary teams of advocates use every tool available – community organizing, impact litigation and individual representation, policy advocacy, media, pro bono partnerships, and public education – to solve seemingly intractable problems, develop leaders, and build collective power to achieve justice. We strive to achieve equality of opportunity and self-determination for people with disabilities, create equal access to health care, ensure immigrant opportunity, strengthen local nonprofits, and secure environmental justice for low-income communities and communities of color. To learn more about NYLPI, visit www.nylpi.org.  

We strongly encourage candidates from historically marginalized groups to apply. We are committed to advancing social justice and civil rights in our advocacy, and we value the dynamism and perspective that staff diversity brings to the work and culture of the office. We strive to promote behaviors, attitudes and policies that enable us to work inclusively and effectively in cross-cultural situations with clients, co-workers, and community partners. We actively recruit and seek to grow and maintain a staff that is diverse along many axes, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, and national origin; disability; socioeconomic background; and sexual orientation and gender identity.

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