Supervising Attorney The Pennsylvania Farmworker Project

The Pennsylvania Farmworker Project of Philadelphia Legal Assistance has an opening for a full-time Supervising Attorney position.

Background: The Pennsylvania Farmworker Project (PFP) is a special project of Philadelphia Legal Assistance (PLA). PFP provides legal representation to the agricultural worker population throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Most farmworkers in Pennsylvania are monolingual Spanish speakers from Mexico and Central America who come to the state to work on an H-2A temporary agricultural visa or settle here for year-round farmwork, such as mushroom picking and dairy work. Some workers also travel to Pennsylvania from other parts of the continental U.S. or Puerto Rico for seasonal work.

Position: Supervising Attorney – Pennsylvania Farmworker Project (Migrant Unit).

Responsibilities:

Casework

• Work with the unit paralegal and other staff to manage a substantial caseload in federal and state employment laws as well as farmworker-specific laws and regulations covering wages, hours, employment contracts, housing conditions, workplace sanitary and safety conditions, and other work-related issues.

• Competently represent immigrant workers, including seeking outside counsel to assess immigration risks and providing referrals to workers with immigration issues.

• Collaborate with PLA’s Unemployment Compensation Unit and Taxpayer Support Clinic to ensure farmworkers who are unemployed or who are being audited by the IRS receive relevant legal assistance.

• Provide referrals to workers who do not qualify for our services or have a legal problem outside of the unit’s practice.

Supervision and Compliance

• Supervise the unit’s paralegal and AmeriCorps VISTA (fellowship ends 7/2022) and any law student or undergraduate interns the unit hires. • Onboard all new staff and interns, and maintain the unit’s training materials.

• Meet with staff individually and as a group in regularly scheduled meetings to review current work and plan for the future.

• Ensure unit’s ongoing compliance with LSC regulations and organization-wide policies.

Outreach

• Conduct extensive community education and outreach to farmworkers and social service providers serving farmworkers throughout Pennsylvania, including:

o Visiting workers in employer-provided housing (“labor camps”) to offer information and services outside of work hours.

o Working with staff to maintain the PFP outreach system and ensuring notes from outreach trips are logged into system to aid future visits. o Working with staff to create educational social media content and maintain our community-facing Facebook page.

o Meeting with providers who serve farmworkers to plan collaboration and mutual support of services.

o Providing Know-Your-Rights presentations to workers who are participants in programs provided by our social service partners.

o Attending regular meetings of service provider networks.

o Working with staff to maintain service provider database.

Grants and Special Projects

• Oversee and participate in farmworker housing inspection research with Penn State University partners.

• Collaborate with Code the Dream to adopt the Vamos app as part of the unit’s farmworker outreach system, send regular tester feedback to Code the Dream, supervise an intern who will assist with onboarding and testing the app.

• Plan and carry out special projects to serve the Pennsylvania farmworker community.

• Assist with other grant applications and manage grant reporting as needed.

Qualifications:

1) Professional proficiency in written and spoken Spanish;

2) Demonstrated commitment to client-centered advocacy and justice for low-wage immigrant workers;

3) High degree of self-motivation, time management, and organization;

4) Desire and ability to work as part of a small, close-knit team and seek external support from the farmworker advocates’ community as needed;

5) Excellent research and communication (oral and written) skills;

6) 3+ years of experience in employment law and litigation (experience representing immigrant workers preferred);

7) Willingness to work irregular hours and travel throughout Pennsylvania (including overnight stays when necessary) to meet the needs of clients;

8) Driver’s license; and

9) Law degree and admission to the Pennsylvania Bar.

Salary and Benefits:

Salary is commensurate with years of experience based on union scale. Full health coverage for employees and their dependents. Generous holiday and leave benefits. Application Process:

Philadelphia Legal Assistance (PLA) is an equal opportunity employer. PLA values a diverse work environment and strongly encourages women, people of color, people who identify as LGBTQ, people with disabilities, people who have experienced poverty or homelessness, and people who have had prior contact with the juvenile, criminal, or child welfare systems to apply. PLA invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.

Interested applicants should email a cover letter and resume, preferably in one PDF document, to: work@philalegal.org.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. The position will be filled as soon as an appropriate candidate is identified.