Mountain State Justice
About the Role
A Fellow will provide support to our legal, policy, and social work team as they work to empower West Virginians and advocate for social justice in our state. Responsibilities: • Interviewing clients and community members regarding policy issues and ongoing litigation that impacts them, including assisting in developing and prosecuting class action lawsuits • Researching state and federal policy proposals and drafting comments to proposed rules • Developing outreach materials and connecting MSJ with other organizations to collaborate on social justice reform and ensure that we’re reaching and advocating for a diverse client base to increase equity for all, including assisting with development and outreach for a new immigrant rights program at MSJ • Providing support for the new Appalachian workers’ center
How We're Advancing Equity:
We regularly achieve success for individuals in the above areas, as well as systemic change. For example, in response to recent litigation the City of Beckley changed its hiring practices to discontinue certain discriminatory actions; in response to recent litigation against a debt collector, that company has sealed private information that was filed in court and discontinued disseminating that information; and in response to a suit against a state maximum security prison, the prison changed its policy to limit force used against inmates in solitary confinement. We also provide legislative advocacy and educate West Virginians about policy proposals that may impact them and how to engage in the political process. Through this work, we have defeated and tempered state legislation that would hurt consumers and employees.
Key Skills & Qualifications (if any)
• Interest in how legal systems work for and against people who don’t have equal access to power • Enthusiasm • Creativity and willingness to share ideas and ask for help • Open-mindedness to difference and diversity, including in economic background, political beliefs, age, ability, sexual orientation, and gender identity • Access to a car preferred • Knowledge of Spanish and/or Arabic preferred