The Southern Coalition for Social Justice (SCSJ) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was founded in August 2007 and works across the South. Our mission is to promote justice by partnering with communities of color and economically disadvantaged communities to defend and advance their political, social, and economic rights. SCSJ’s focus areas are community-driven, and currently include voting rights, justice system reform, youth justice, and environmental justice. Our model of practice requires team members who work well with grassroots organizations and in collaboration with other civil rights groups, and who have deep passion for and commitment to fighting for inclusive political participation.
For more information about our work and our unique community lawyering approach, visit our website at www.scsj.org.
Diversity and Inclusion Statement:
SCSJ is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity for all persons without regard to race, color, creed, sex, religion, age, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, personal appearance, marital or family status, citizenship, past, current, or prospective service in the uniformed services, genetic information, natural hair styles, or other status as protected by State and Federal laws. It is our intention to promote the full realization of equality in opportunity and employment.
Southern Coalition for Social Justice (SCSJ), the leading social justice organization in the South, is seeking a highly motivated, passionate, team-oriented individual to join and help build and expand its Environmental Justice program. The Environmental Justice (EJ) program uses a community-based lawyering approach to redress environmental injustices throughout the South. SCSJ’s EJ program advocates for and empowers environmental justice communities through community legal education, strategic counseling, and litigation on a wide range of issues including zoning and land use, air and water pollution, energy equity, and climate change resilience. The EJ program’s work will often overlap with that of the Voting Rights and Justice System Reform program areas.
The Environmental Justice Associate will report to the Chief Counsel for Environmental Justice. The EJ Associate will play a key role in developing advocacy and litigation strategies and community engagement in response to community needs to build a more inclusive and equitable South by remedying systemic, historical, and ongoing environmental injustices. Commensurate with experience, the associate attorney will be responsible for litigating environmental justice cases in state and federal court and administrative proceedings, as well as identifying regulatory and policy opportunities to advance environmental justice at the local, state, and national levels. The EJ Associate will also represent SCSJ in public settings including coalition and community meetings, hearings, panel presentations and with the press, always with an emphasis on amplifying the voices of community partners.
The successful candidate for this position will have a demonstrated interest in social and environmental justice, as well as strong research and writing skills. Litigation experience and/or a community organizing background or skillset will also be valuable in this role. Creativity will be important in finding resolutions to longstanding and entrenched environmental injustices. The EJ Associate will need to be capable of working independently but will also contribute to a thriving team dynamic. The EJ Associate will be committed to centering the communities we serve in all our work and to building and honoring the trust of those communities.
- JD from an accredited law school
- Admitted or eligible for admission to the North Carolina State Bar. Attorneys who are members of another state bar in the region SCSJ serves (Virginia, Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Texas) are also encouraged to apply with the understanding that Admission to the North Carolina Bar is expected within one year
- A demonstrated interest in social and environmental justice
- Highly organized with meticulous attention to detail
- Excellent research and writing skills
- Ability to work equally well both independently and in a team environment
- Comfort with shifting priorities, time-sensitive deadlines, and managing multiple projects simultaneously
- Excellent interpersonal skills and professionalism.
- Demonstrated ability to work confidently and collaboratively with individuals at all levels of the organization
- Ability to prioritize, organize and balance a heavy workload with a high level of productivity, proficiency, and precision
- Commitment to centering environmental justice communities.
- Excellent listening skills, professionalism, and the ability to appropriately manage confidential information.
- Strong team player
- Quick learner willing to take on additional responsibility as experience level increases.
- Flexibility to accommodate work during evenings and weekends when warranted
- A commitment to social justice principles and to SCSJ’s community-lawyering model of practice
- Commitment to diversity and inclusion. Respect for differences in race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability and socioeconomic background
- Preference for experience in litigation and/or community organizing
Salary and Benefits:
The Environmental Justice Associate starting salary range is from $60,000 to $65,000 a year, commensurate with experience, and includes a comprehensive benefits package, with medical and dental coverage, paid parental leave, participation in a retirement plan, sick and vacation leave, paid holidays and more.
The Environmental Justice Associate will work from SCSJ’s office located in Durham, North Carolina. Due to the ongoing public health crisis, SCSJ staff will be working remotely until advised that it is safe to return to work.
Candidates must upload a cover letter, resume, and two writing samples through the application form here. Recent graduates and graduating third year law students are also requested to provide law school transcripts.
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Candidates who can start ASAP are encouraged to apply.