Litigation staff connect callers to resources, referrals or direct services within DRLC, provide representation on individual legal matters resolved through negotiation, and conduct trainings in the community. Disability litigation cases involve cutting-edge legal issues that advance the rights of people with disabilities. Staff focus on crucial areas like housing, transportation and access to public services and private businesses. Education advocacy litigation involves special education and school-related disability discrimination to ensure students are fully included and provided a free and appropriate public education. This work is accomplished in a variety of traditional and non-traditional settings, including juvenile halls, camps and jails.
The Cancer Legal Resource Center (CLRC), a program of DRLC, provides information, education and referrals about cancer-related legal issues to the public through its national telephone assistance line. CLRC also conducts national education and outreach programs for community groups, employers and healthcare professionals. The program is actively involved in community activities to raise public awareness of cancer-related legal and public policy issues.
Attorneys interested in disability civil rights, special education, cancer and end-of-life advocacy can hone their skills, make a difference and transform their communities by removing barriers to equal access and opportunities. DRLC works with attorney volunteers to co-counsel and to take referrals of large and small disability civil rights and patient rights cases. It also works with pro bono attorneys willing to help negotiate Individualized Education Plans with school districts for low-income and minority special education students. DRLC provides free MCLE training and ongoing support to education advocacy volunteers. Cancer Legal Resource Center (CLRC) assists people with cancer as they face converging legal and medical problems. CLRC works with volunteer attorneys interested in providing advice on issues confronting patients, including insurance, medical, housing, employment, guardianship, end-of-life planning and similar areas.
Summer law clerks will primarily assist attorneys with investigation, research, and drafting in current and prospective cases in all areas of disability discrimination. Substantive areas of work may include access to education, transportation, public accommodation, and health care. Interns may also assist in the analysis of calls received by the DRLC helpline.
We prefer to hire law students who have some experience with issues relating to our mission. Thus, some familiarity with the disability rights movement is encouraged, along with a commitment to public interest law. We welcome applications from all current law students. Individuals with disabilities and other members of historically marginalized groups are especially encouraged to apply.
This is a volunteer position; summer law clerks are strongly encouraged to seek out and apply for grants from their school and/or other sources of funding.
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. Interested applicants should submit a resume, cover letter, writing sample, and list of three references to email@example.com.
Disability Rights Legal Center (DRLC) offers employment, general internship, law student externship, pro bono and other volunteer opportunities to work on legal issues critical to persons with disabilities, cancer and terminal illness. All applicants must have an internet connection with a minimum 5 mbps download speed (and a computer for volunteers) since most staff work from remote locations. In 2015, DRLC transitioned to a paperless environment, reducing costs and increasing the speed and efficiency of legal and administrative tasks, and coordination among staff. Overhead was further reduced by allowing staff to work remotely, which significantly lowered the office footprint. DRLC will provide a phone system, virtual computer workspace and access to tools necessary to help the communities it serves. Allow three days for training and setup of DRLC systems.
At DRLC, employees and volunteers can
- Interview clients;
- Participate in outreach and community training events;
- Provide callers with individualized information and legal referrals;
- Investigate and analyze legal issues;
- Conduct legal and factual research for law and motion practice;
- Attend depositions, mediations and hearings;
- Write demand letters on behalf of clients (law students and attorneys only);
- Draft complaints, discovery, motions and briefs (law students and attorneys only);
- Review, analyze and draft comments on legislation and regulations (law students and attorneys only);
- Handle individual matters resolved through negotiation (law students and attorneys only);
- Participate in development and communications functions related to every program area.