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Advancing the Human & Civil Rights of People with Disabilities in Illinois

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Staff Attorney and Fellow

Manager, Representative Payee Project

Volunteer Opportunities

Organizational Background

For nearly 35 years, Equip for Equality has been advancing the human and civil rights of people with disabilities across Illinois. Among our many accomplishments, Equip for Equality has made Chicago public transportation more accessible, helped tens of thousands of people with disabilities move from institutions into the community, increased inclusive education and educational outcomes for students with disabilities, and enhanced safety and quality of care in a variety of settings. We have offices throughout Illinois.

Equip for Equality has three Programs: the Civil Rights Team, the Special Education Clinic, and the Abuse Investigation Unit. EFE has a dedicated staff of 59 attorneys, social workers, and administrative staff working every day to advance our mission. As we work to improve society’s inclusion of individuals with disabilities, we also strive to be an inclusive, diverse, and welcoming workplace.

STAFF ATTORNEY AND FELLOW – CIVIL RIGHTS TEAM

The Staff Attorney and Fellow position is within the Civil Rights Team. The Civil Rights Team provides legal services to fight discrimination and remove barriers that prevent people with disabilities from fully participating in community life and pursuing their goals.  The attorney will focus on advancing the civil rights of Deaf and Hard of Hearing people in the criminal justice system.

JOB SUMMARY

The position of Staff Attorney and Fellow will focus on monitoring and ensuring the effective implementation of the class settlement agreement reached in Holmes v. Jeffries, which requires the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) to make substantial changes to its treatment of Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals. Among other responsibilities, the attorney will:

  • Communicate regularly with Class Members via telephone and written mail to evaluate the Settlement’s implementation and provide legal advice to Class Members
  • Manage and analyze a high volume of information related to IDOC’s implementation of the settlement agreement, including data and records
  • Communicate regularly on case strategy with co-counsel Winston & Strawn, Uptown People’s Law Center, and the National Association of the Deaf
  • Draft court filings, including quarterly responses to IDOC’s reports and, if necessary, motions to enforce the settlement agreement
  • Participate in regularly scheduled court hearings
  • Travel to facilities to monitor compliance and interview Class Members (approximately 1-2 prison visits per month)

This fellowship is funded by Winston & Strawn, our pro bono partner on the Holmes settlement agreement. This fellowship is expected to last until July 2022, with the possibility of being extended. This position reports jointly to two attorneys responsible for the Holmes v. Jeffries settlement agreement. Training will be provided on disability rights law, the settlement agreement, and our internal case management system. Opportunities will be provided to work with pro bono attorneys and law student interns as well as other professional development opportunities.

REQUIREMENTS AND PREFERRED EXPERIENCE

  • A law degree and license
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • 2-4 years of relevant experience
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Experience with and/or commitment to the civil rights of people with disabilities in the prison systems
  • Experience with and/or commitment to working with diverse client populations and incarcerated people
  • Travel required within Illinois (approximately 1-2 prison visits per month)
  • Personal or professional experience with people with disabilities
  • Spanish language and/or American Sign Language fluency is a plus
  • This position can be located in any of Equip for Equality’s offices

Equip for Equality encourages qualified candidates of all backgrounds and identities to apply for this position.

Application Deadline, How to Apply, Compensation and Benefits

Applications will be accepted until March 13, 2020. Please include salary expectations in cover letter. Salary is commensurate with experience and EFE offers excellent benefits.

HOW TO APPLY

If interested and qualified, please submit resume and cover letter, including salary expectations. Salary is commensurate with experience, and EFE offers excellent benefits. Position is open until filled.

Send resume and cover letter to hiring@equipforequality.org.

Fax: 312-541-2378

Or apply online: https://recruiting.paylocity.com/recruiting/jobs/List/2193/Equip-for-Equality

Resumes without cover letters will not be considered.

Or apply online: https://recruiting.paylocity.com/recruiting/jobs/List/2193/Equip-for-Equality

Manager, Representative Payee Project – Abuse Investigation Unit, Chicago Office

JOB SUMMARY

Equip for Equality, a disability rights organization headquartered in Chicago and providing advocacy and legal services throughout Illinois, is seeking a clinical professional with project management experience to manage a program engaging in oversight and review of representative payees under the  “Strengthening Protections for Social Security Beneficiaries Act of 2017,” which ensures safety and protection of the rights of people with disabilities in Illinois who are beneficiaries. The position involves managing the program under the supervision of the Abuse Investigation Unit Vice President and working with the staff to meet the requirements of the program. Those requirements include on-site reviews to ensure the suitability of representative payees and compliance with Representative Payee regulations by interviewing beneficiaries and others, documenting observations, examining financial records, gathering information for possible financial mismanagement, and identifying health safety and rights violations. The project also includes educating Representative Payees to ensure that they fully understand their duties and responsibilities. The position will be located in our Chicago office.

REQUIREMENTS AND PREFERRED EXPERIENCE

The selected candidate must have a Masters degree and at least 5 years of professional experience managing programs serving people with disabilities in medical, mental health, developmental disability, rehabilitation or social work fields and a strong commitment to their civil rights. Local and overnight travel and a valid driver’s license are required.

HOW TO APPLY

If interested and qualified, please submit resume and cover letter, including salary expectations. Salary is commensurate with experience, and EFE offers excellent benefits. Position is open until filled.

Send resume and cover letter to hiring@equipforequality.org.

Fax: 312-541-2378

Or apply online: https://recruiting.paylocity.com/recruiting/jobs/List/2193/Equip-for-Equality

Resumes without cover letters will not be considered.

 


Orange circle with the words "Did You Know?" typed inside.We have volunteer opportunities!

Did you know you can volunteer or have an unpaid internship with EFE? Students and professionals can volunteer by providing general office help or through internships with our technology department, human resources and other areas of our state-wide non-profit organization. (If you’re an attorney, law student or law school graduate, please read about our Pro Bono Attorney and Law Student Initiative which offers an opportunity to help with our disability rights cases and obtain hands-on legal advocacy experience. You can also learn about Public Interest career opportunities at Illinois Legal Aid OnLine.) For information about our volunteer and unpaid internship opportunities for non-attorneys, please contact Myra Dunbar Braggs (see contact information below).

Learn about our Voting Access Chicago project and help us make Chicago’s polling places ADA accessible for people with disabilities and older adults. For volunteer opportunities, please contact Bebe Novich.

Background Checks

Because Equip for Equality is a community-serving organization and safety is of the utmost importance, Equip for Equality requires a background check for employees and others who volunteer or perform services for us depending on the role. The background check is run for employees once a conditional offer of employment has been extended. Background checks are conducted in accordance with all applicable laws, EFE’s policy, and paid for by EFE. A disclosed record may not automatically disqualify a candidate from employment.

We are an equal opportunity employer.

We evaluate qualified applicants without regard to disability, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status, and other legally protected characteristics. View the Department of Labor’s “EEO is The Law” poster for more information about how employers must comply with Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) laws.

Do you need a reasonable accommodation for our application process?

Equip for Equality is committed to working with and providing reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation because of a disability for any part of the application process, please contact Myra Dunbar Braggs at myra@equipforequality.org or (312) 895-7333 and let her know the nature of your request and your contact information. Disability related information disclosed via the application process will be kept confidential.

 


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Myra Dunbar Braggs, Human Resources Manager
Equip for Equality
20 N. Michigan, Suite 300
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-895-7333
Fax: 312-541-2378


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Last updated: March 02, 2020

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