ACLU - California

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American Civil Liberties Union Foundation
Immigrants’ Rights Project, San Francisco, CA

For more than 93 years, the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation (ACLU ) has been at the forefront of virtually every major battle for civil liberties and equal justice in this country. Principled and nonpartisan, the ACLU has offices in all 50 states, Washington, DC and Puerto Rico, and brings together the country’s largest team of public interest lawyers, lobbyists, communication strategists, members and activists in the advancement of equality, fairness, and freedom, especially for the most vulnerable in our society.

The Immigrants’ Rights Project (IRP) of the ACLU’s National office in San Francisco seeks applications for the full-time position of Paralegal . This position is for a duration of three years.


IRP conducts the largest litigation program in the country dedicated to enforcing and defending the constitutional and civil rights of immigrants and to combating public and private discrimination against non-citizens. IRP also supports and coordinates the immigrants’ rights work of the ACLU’s affiliates around the country. The Project maintains offices in New York and California (with additional staff in Atlanta and Los Angeles). Current areas of litigation and advocacy include state and local anti-immigrant laws and practices; immigration enforcement practices and racial profiling; immigration detention; habeas corpus and access to the courts; discriminatory language and education policies; and due process in immigration removal proceedings. The Immigrants’ Rights Project is part of the ACLU’s Center for Equality, which works to uphold the federal constitution’s promise that all Americans will receive equal protection of the law. The Center also includes the ACLU’s Racial Justice, Voting and Disability work.

The Paralegal will be part of IRP’s national staff and will support the ACLU’s nationwide and coordinated campaign of litigation, advocacy, and public education to fight back against anti-immigrant state laws and policies. In recent years, state and local lawmakers around the country have adopted unconstitutional legislation and policies designed to take federal immigration regulation and enforcement into their own hands. These policies invite discrimination against immigrants, Latinos, and other communities of color and erode civil rights and civil liberties by, for example, permitting police officers to demand documentation from anyone who is subject to routine encounters with law enforcement. The civil liberties threats are especially dire in the southwestern, midwestern and southeastern regions of the country, where state legislatures have enacted some of the nation’s harshest anti-immigrant laws and local law enforcement agencies have implemented unconstitutional policies and practices relating to immigration enforcement.

The Paralegal will participate in regular staff meetings and will have the opportunity to learn about strategies for protecting the rights of immigrants.


Prepare and file legal pleadings; arrange for service of legal documents; prepare and serve discovery documents; and research on court rules and procedures.

Maintain case files, attorneys’ correspondence files, and internal litigation tracking systems including case summaries and calendar of litigation deadlines and hearings.

Process and respond to requests for legal assistance.

Serve as liaison to Accounting for reimbursements and expenses.

Supervise the recruitment, hiring training and work of Legal Administrative Assistants and interns. Collaborate in admininstering the legal internship program.

Conduct factual research in support of litigation and advocacy work.

Update content on the ACLU website and intranet.

Handle special projects and other duties, e.g. event planning, as assigned by attorneys and the Office Manager.


Bachelor’s degree and one year of paralegal or related experience required.

Experience in preparing legal pleadings, including production of tables of contents and authorities for legal briefs, is strongly preferred.

Strong research and organizational skills required.

Must have outstanding written, verbal and interpersonal skills.

Ability to work independently as well as within a team.

Must be well organized, efficient, highly motivated, and able to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and see them through to completion.

Strong computer skills with advanced knowledge and experience in Microsoft Office and Adobe Acrobat.

Familiarity with federal court rules and procedures is preferred.

Experience supervising staff and interns.

Basic knowledge of Westlaw Next is preferred.

Fluency in Spanish is a plus.

Commitment to civil liberties, immigrants’ rights and public interest legal work is essential.


The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within the parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.

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The philosopher Socrates once said, "I am that gadfly which God has given the state." While the American Civil Liberties Union...