Position: Staff Lawyer – Immigration and Refugee Legal Clinic (IRLC)
Permanent Full-time (35 hours per week)
Reporting to: Senior Counsel, Clinic Lead, IRLC
The Immigration and Refugee Legal Clinic (IRLC) is the only legal clinic dedicated to refugee and immigration law in British Columbia. IRLC provides free legal advice and representation, with interpretation services, for low-income people across BC on immigration and refugee law matters. We aim to reach those who fall through the cracks of our legal system and provide them with excellent, respectful, and caring legal advice and representation. Alongside our casework, we advocate for change on issues that repeatedly come up for our clients by engaging in systemic litigation and law reform efforts. We provide legal education to community groups and service providers across BC. Clinic staff also serve as mentors to law students and junior lawyers interested in the refugee and immigration law field.
The clinic was jointly created by the Province of British Columbia and the Law Foundation of BC after the BC Government’s External Review of Legal Aid services recommended a refugee legal clinic be established to “take on urgent and complex cases” and supplement the legal aid system.
The IRLC operates as an independent program, hosted by ISSofBC. The Staff Lawyer would be an employee of ISSofBC.
The three core values that guide IRLC’s work are: legal excellence, accessibility and respect and care. We are seeking a staff lawyer who shares our commitment to these values to help us build and expand this clinic.
- Represent clients at hearings at the RPD, the ID, and IAD of the IRB.
- Represent clients in written legal applications, such as: appeals at the RAD, PRRAs, H&Cs and deferral of removal applications
- Represent clients in urgent stay of removal motions and judicial reviews at the Federal Court
- Provide summary advice to clients and make appropriate referrals
- Participate in and/or develop systemic litigation strategies/ law reform advocacy
- Present information about the IRLC to legal and immigrant serving agencies as well as refugee/immigrant communities
- Work in collaboration with other agencies on immigration/refugee and poverty law issues
- Participate in legal education initiatives
- Supervise law students and other volunteers
- Contribute to the ongoing improvement of IRLC’s administrative systems
- Perform other duties as assigned
- A member in good standing of the Law Society of British Columbia or eligible for immediate transfer
- A minimum of three-year post-call experience working in immigration and refugee law that includes experience with judicial review applications
Skills and Abilities:
- Demonstrate a commitment to equity and inclusion including a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regard to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, ability, and socio-economic circumstance
- Effective communication with clients using plain language, and sensitive communication considering the particular needs and vulnerability of low-income clients, including survivors of torture and sexualized violence
- Effective interviewing skills
- Excellent, clear and persuasive written and oral advocacy
- Excellent strategic sense in advocacy, including being able to deal effectively with opposing counsel
- Effective at building trusting relationships internally and externally
- Self-reflective, critical thinker about their work, with an aim to improve systems and outcomes
- Strong attention to detail and accuracy, and ability to multi-task, organize and meet deadlines.
- Must possess a high degree of personal initiative and to work independently
- Commitment to work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts
- Ability to be flexible as circumstances and assignments change
Individuals interested in this role are invited to submit:
- An expression of interest in letter format (PDF)
- A resume or CV (PDF)
Please email in PDF format. Please use subject line “staff lawyer position” and email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Closing Date: By 4pm on October 30, 2020 – applications will be considered on a rolling basis