Pro Bono Attorney Opportunities
The Pro Bono Program gives attorneys interested in disability civil rights law, special education law and other related opportunities a chance to hone their advocacy skills and to make a difference in the community.
- Disability Litigation Program. Transform communities by removing barriers that deny equal access to people with disabilities. DRLC needs attorneys to co-counsel and to take referrals of large and small disability civil rights cases.
- Education Advocacy Program (EAP). Help a student in need of special education achieve tremendous results. DRLC needs volunteer attorneys to participate in negotiating individualized Education Plans with school districts to ensure low-income and minority children receive the special education services they need. DRLC provides free MCLE training and ongoing support to EAP volunteers.
Internship and Volunteer Opportunities
Summer Law Clerks
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Civil Rights Program Externship
Students working with DRLC’s Civil Rights Program will have the opportunity to: (1) work on class action and individual impact cases with the Disability Litigation Program and Education Advocacy Programs, allowing them to develop legal research and writing skills, and actively participate in all phases of litigation; and (2) conduct intake and provide limited scope advocacy services under the Community Advocacy Program.
Students can enroll in as low as two units per semester for the Civil Rights Program. Given the nature of this externship, students schedule their own in-office hours to fulfill their requirements.
Community Advocacy Program
Volunteers for the Community Advocacy Program (CAP) gain hands-on experience assisting persons with disabilities and their advocates with disability related issues via the intake line. They also gain case management experience and may develop community outreach and education experience. The CAP Program accepts undergraduate, graduate, and law student volunteers and well as community volunteers. For more information click here.
Cancer Rights Program Externship/Volunteer Opportunities
Students or volunteers working with DRLC’s Cancer Legal Resource Center gain hands-on experience assisting people with cancer, cancer survivors, their families, friends and others affected by cancer, primarily by providing assistance via a national hotline. For more information, click here.
General Volunteer Opportunities
DRLC needs enthusiastic volunteers for all its programs. Please call 213-736-1479 to volunteer. If you have skills and talents in areas not listed below, just let us know!
Intake. Return phone calls regarding disability related disputes, consult with attorneys on recommendations and write letters to callers providing resources and referrals. This does not require legal knowledge or a law degree, just the ability to ask a set of questions, listen sympathetically, take notes of the caller’s issue and consult with an attorney regarding what course of action DRLC will take. This is a great opportunity to help someone in a difficult situation.
Administration. Assist with operations, financial/statistical projects, administrative work, filing documents, organizing press packets, putting together resource packets, creating address labels and data entry. DRLC also needs paralegal assistance with case files.
Special Events. DRLC also needs volunteers to assist with planning and staffing outreach events (health fairs, open houses, training events). Work for the duration of the entire event or just one part.