News & Updates

Washington State Office of Civil Legal Aid seeks a Children’s Representation Program Counsel
May 23, 2023 | Chinami Arai

Agency: Office of Civil Legal Aid
Open: June 1, 2023
Close: Open Until Filled; first review of applications received will occur on or before August 1, 2023. OCLA reserves the right to close this recruitment at any time.
Job Type: Regular Full-time; FLSA Exempt
Salary: $102,000 – $107,000 Full-Time Annually DOQ
Location: Flexible – Determined on the Location and Needs of the Best Candidate

OCLA’s CRP is looking for an exceptional individual with a passion for equity and justice for children and youth involved in the child welfare system. The CRP Program Counsel will help maintain OCLA’s existing program for appointed counsel to represent children and youth who remain dependent six months following termination of their parental rights (legally free children and youth), codified at RCW 13.34.212(1), and support the design and implementation of a new statewide program for appointed counsel for dependent children and youth ages 8-17 in dependencies and dependent children and youth ages 0-7 where a petition to terminate parental rights has been filed. This program is codified at RCW 13.34.212(3).
The CRP Program Counsel will work with the CRP Program Manager and the CRP team to develop and implement effective strategies for attorney recruitment, training, support, oversight, and accountability.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities
• Work with the CRP Program Manager and CRP team to develop and implement strategies to recruit, train, support, and retain a diverse community of CRP contract attorneys.
• Work with the CRP Program Manager and CRP team to monitor the performance of contract attorneys and their adherence to statewide standards for children’s representation. Contract attorney monitoring functions include biennial attorney reviews; court observations; document review; ensuring compliance with mandatory training requirements; conducting monthly reviews of contract attorney case management time and activity entries. Some travel within Washington State will be required to fulfill these oversight duties.
• Provide technical support to contract attorneys.
• Support and facilitate the development of regional communities of practice.
• Work with the CRP Program Manager and CRP team to monitor, update, and maintain OCLA’s CRP web pages.
• Identify and monitor trends within child welfare practice and needs of practitioners and their clients to support the CRP’s child welfare and juvenile court system improvement efforts consistent with OCLA’s focus on reducing disparate adverse outcomes for BIPOC children and youth and those who identify as LGBTQ2S, are immigrants, or who are negatively impacted by social, cultural, racial, ability-based practices and biases.
• Work with child welfare and justice system partners to reduce the adverse experience and improve outcomes for children and youth in care, especially those at risk of disproportionately negative harm.
• Regularly participate in continuing legal education opportunities and other trainings related child welfare law.
• Embrace and actively participate in OCLA’s internal equity and anti-racism-related efforts.
• Other duties as assigned.

Background and Qualifications
• Juris Doctor and in good standing with the Washington State Bar Association (required)
• At least three (3) years of experience providing standards-based legal representation to children and youth in dependencies and termination of parental rights proceedings; or other substantially relevant experience (required)
• Substantial knowledge and understanding of courts, the court system, child welfare law, and standards-based legal representation of children and youth in child welfare cases (required)
• Demonstrated understanding of the impact of race, bias, discrimination, and differential treatment of communities disproportionately composed of Black, Indigenous, and people of color; individuals who identify as LGBTQ2S or other sexual minorities; individuals with disabilities; immigrants; limited English-speaking persons; and others who are disproportionately overrepresented in child welfare and in the law and justice systems (required)
• Demonstrated commitment to equity and justice for those disproportionately harmed by the law and justice system, especially the child welfare system (required)
• Lived experience as or working with children or youth involved in the child welfare system (preferred)
• Experience with oversight, data tracking, and reporting (preferred)
• Excellent written, oral, and communication skills (required)
• Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite applications, especially Word, Excel, and PowerPoint (required)
• Ability to quickly learn and master new software applications (required)

Compensation and Benefits
Salary: $102,000 – $107,000 Full-Time Annually DOQ
Benefits: Paid contributions to medical/dental, life insurance, and long-term disability insurance programs
Leave: Paid vacation and sick leave benefits
Retirement: Paid contributions to state retirement benefits

For more information, click here.