The National Prison Project of the ACLU’s National office in Washington, DC seeks applications for the full-time position of Staff Attorney.
Founded in 1972, the National Prison Project (NPP) seeks to ensure constitutional conditions of confinement in prisons, jails, juvenile facilities, and immigration detention facilities. The Project has successfully litigated on behalf of prisoners in more than 25 states, and since 1991 has represented prisoners in five cases before the United States Supreme Court. The Project is the only organization litigating conditions of confinement cases nationwide on behalf of men, women, and children.
NPP policy priorities include reducing prison overcrowding, improving prisoner health care, eliminating violence and maltreatment, and increasing oversight and accountability in prisons, jails, and other places of detention. The Project leads the nationwide Stop Solitary campaign, which works to end the excessive and inappropriate use of solitary confinement. The Project also coordinates a nationwide network of litigators, conducts training and public education conferences, and provides expert advice and technical assistance to activists and lawyers throughout the country.
Litigate in federal courts, including appellate courts, throughout the country
Work closely with other staff attorneys and local counsel to handle a substantial caseload of major class actions in federal court
Conduct legal research and write legal memoranda
Analyze legislation for potential litigation
Draft pleadings and briefs, engage in discovery and motion practice, and conduct evidentiary hearings and oral arguments
Provide technical assistance and expert legal advice to local ACLU affiliates, cooperating attorneys and others who seek assistance from the Project
Conduct policy advocacy on prisoners’ rights and criminal justice issues
Develop new cases and non-litigation advocacy projects
Engage in public speaking and articulating ACLU views to a variety of audiences on a broad range of prisoners’ rights, criminal justice, and civil liberties issues
Demonstrate a commitment to diversity within the office, using a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, disability, and socio-economic circumstance
Commitment to work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts
J.D. and a minimum of three years of litigation experience, preferably in federal court
Active bar membership
A demonstrated commitment to civil liberties and public interest law
Excellent legal research and writing skills
Ability to travel.
A demonstrated ability to work independently as well as within a team
Demonstrated ability to perform complex legal analytical work
Excellent communication skills, both written and oral
Self-motivated, diligent and able to meet strict deadlines while under pressure
Familiarity with criminal justice issues
About American Civil Liberties Union
For nearly 100 years, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States. Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, preserving the right to vote, the right to have an abortion, the rights protected by the First Amendment and due process of law, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. The ACLU is a nationwide organization the fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, economic status, national origin, immigration status, incarceration or record of arrest or conviction. We are nonprofit and nonpartisan and have grown from a roomful of civil liberties activists to an organization of more than 1.6 million members and supporters.