Staff Attorney - Health, Education, and Legal Assistance Project: A Medical -Legal Partnership (Philadlphia)

Health, Education, and Legal Assistance Project: A Medical -Legal Partnership logo

Widener University is currently seeking a Staff Attorney for its Philadelphia site of the Health, Education, and Legal Assistance Project: A Medical -Legal Partnership  at Delaware Law School (HELP: MLP). This is a hybrid position in which the Staff Attorney will work remotely as well as in our West Philadelphia office. Reporting to the Director and Managing Attorney, this grant-funded Staff Attorney role will be responsible for providing civil legal assistance to families with low incomes participating in maternal and child health programs. This role will work as part of an interdisciplinary team that supports families by coordinating direct legal services to clients, as well as providing training and education to public health partners, and engaging in systemic advocacy activities.

HELP: MLP provides legal services to support families during pregnancy and early childhood, both critical periods when health-harming legal needs seriously impact maternal and infant health. We embed our staff within public health organizations, including nationally recognized home-visiting programs, such as Nurse-Family Partnership and Healthy Start. Together, we form medical-legal partnerships aimed at reducing the health inequities and racial disparities that negatively impact many of our client families. By working side-by-side with community-based home-visiting programs to screen for social determinants of health, our team can identify emerging legal needs early and take a preventative approach to legal services, to reduce family stress and foster the stability families need to thrive.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES (including, but not limited to):

Essential duties:

  • Provide direct legal services to clients, including litigation of landlord/tenant, public benefits, and other matters.
  • Develop and deliver trainings to public health and community partners.
  • Develop educational materials for public health partners and clients, including fact sheets, checklists, and handouts.
  • Manage and organize client information using forms and an electronic legal case management system.
  • Perform legal research and writing.
  • Engage in systemic advocacy efforts to advance policy goals and improve community-wide health.
  • Participate in local, state, and national coalitions and workgroups.
  • Support the development of grant applications, reports, newsletters, articles, and other written publications.
  • Local travel as needed to see clients and participate in work-related activities.
  • Become and remain well-informed regarding basic legal principles applicable to area(s) of practice, attending training conferences as needed or requested by supervising attorney(s).
  • Other duties as assigned.

Secondary responsibilities:

  • Provide supervision and mentorship to law students as needed.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS (education/training and experience required):

Required:

  • Admission to the Pennsylvania Bar. If not admitted in Pennsylvania, must be eligible to take the next scheduled bar examination and pass it.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills.
  • Ability to apply modern technology to performance of legal work and tasks, including keeping updated case notes in an electronic case management database.
  • Contribute to the development of grant applications, reports, newsletters, articles, and other written publications.
  • Must be willing to travel within the Philadelphia area as needed.
  • Commitment to improving the lives of families with low incomes.
  • Willingness and ability to perform duties in an interdisciplinary setting with public health partners.
  • Flexibility, including willingness to work in any of HELP: MLP’s areas of practice as priorities may change based on clients’ needs or funding.

Preferred:

  • At least 3 years of legal services in one of the following areas: public benefits, housing law, or family law.
  • Lived experience similar to clients served, including lived experience of poverty and other forms of social adversity and challenges.
  • Familiarity and/or experience of Philadelphia legal networks.
  • Familiarity with the social services and community resources available in Philadelphia and how to access them.
  • Verbal and written fluency in English and another language to help support our client population.

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS AND/OR UNUSUAL HOURS: 

  • Legal services at HELP: MLP are delivered at two sites - one in Eddystone, Pa. and one in Philadelphia, Pa. This position is located in West Philadelphia; however, the Staff Attorney will have a hybrid schedule of remote and on-site work.

Qualified candidates must submit resume and cover letter for consideration.  Incomplete applications will not be considered. Only those selected to interview will be contacted. 

Widener University is committed to fostering an inclusive community in which faculty, staff, and students from a variety of backgrounds, cultures, and personal experiences are welcomed and can thrive.  We are an equal opportunity employer and are committed to providing equal educational and employment opportunities for all persons without regard to age, color, national origin, race, religion, disability, veteran status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or status as a protected veteran.

Widener University requires all prospective employees to provide proof of being fully vaccinated (including booster) against COVID-19 prior to employment or apply and be approved for a medical/religious exemption.  Offers may be rescinded if new employee does not provide proof of being fully vaccinated in a timely manner.

Some positions may be eligible for a hybrid or remote work arrangement that may include a partially or fully remote work location, consistent with Widener’s Flexible Work policy. 

Widener University, an independent, metropolitan, doctoral-intensive university, connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention and experiential learning are key components of the Widener Experience. Located in Chester, PA, Widener's main campus is nestled between Philadelphia, PA and Wilmington, DE, with Law Schools located in both Harrisburg and Wilmington. For more information about the university, please visit our website at www.widener.edu.

 

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