Legal Interns

Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth

Job Title: Summer Legal Intern

Classification: Temporary, full-time, non-exempt

Location: Remote

Organization: Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth (CFSY)

Due: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Here are general guidelines:

Summer internship (late May/early June through August):  apply by January 31

About the Opportunity:

The legal internships/externships at the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth (“CFSY”) give law students an opportunity to work on the cutting edge of constitutional and human rights law. The Campaign works to support litigation and legislative efforts to end the practice of sentencing children to life in prison so that all children have a meaningful opportunity to be released.

The legal intern’s work will include a mixture of work that supports both policy advocacy and litigation efforts. Policy work may include:

  • Researching and writing legal memos analyzing potential priority states for the future legislative sessions
  • Aiding in the drafting of state level legislation
  • Anticipating and researching implementation challenges of proposed legislation
  • Researching bill sponsors
  • exploring potential partnerships with state-based community groups 

During the legislative session, this work will be dynamic based on the advocacy team’s needs. 

Litigation work may include:

  • Tracking petitions for certiorari 
  • Briefing pending or recently decided cases
  • Listening to oral arguments
  • Searching dockets and other legal documents
  • Tracking parole hearings
  • Updating databases

The work of the legal intern will be integral toward our broader strategy of eliminating life without parole as a sentencing option for children. Legal interns report to the Senior Litigation Counsel but will also regularly collaborate with the broader legal and policy team.

Qualifications:

  • Currently enrolled at an ABA accredited law school
  • Commitment to criminal and juvenile justice issues, particularly reform to harsh juvenile sentencing practices in the United States, racial discrimination in juvenile justice, and /or human rights in the United States
  • Some experience working with Microsoft Outlook and Google Office applications. 
  • Well-developed organizational skills
  • Maturity and reliability
  • Strong communication, interpersonal, and listening skills
  • Willingness to take direction and work as a team – friendly and courteous, willing to work as part of the larger community efforts to end juvenile life without parole
  • Excellent writing abilities
  • Some interest/knowledge in collecting/organizing data is preferred, but not required

Values and Traits:

  • Strong interest in criminal justice issues, particularly progressive reform to harsh juvenile sentencing practices, racial discrimination in juvenile justice, and/or human rights in the United States.
  • Belief that our society has failed the children impacted by life without parole and other extreme sentences and that we all have a responsibility to create avenues for their restoration and that of our entire community;
  • Belief in the inherent good, dignity and humanity of all people regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression, class, education level, zip code and more; and belief that every one of us is more than the worst things we’ve done or experienced;
  • Self-motivated and able to take initiative and implement own responsibilities within guidelines of department structure and workplan;
  • Flexible and willing and able to adapt to the evolving nature of CFSY’s work.
  • Constructive and optimistic; confronts problems with the expectation that a solution exists;
  • Prioritizes self-care.

Location and Travel

The CFSY’s headquarters are in Washington, DC, with many staff working remotely throughout the country. For this Summer 2022 position, interns will work remotely. There may be options to work in our office in Washington D.C., depending on COVID guidelines, but this is not required. Temporary employees are asked to provide their own computer. However, this should not be a barrier to employment and accomodations can be made. All business related travel will be paid for by the CFSY in accordance with our travel policy.

Compensation, Benefits, and Culture:

The hourly wage for this position is $16.10. This position is temporary, full‐time, and non-exempt.

The CFSY believes in and actively practices meaningful connection to individuals directly impacted by extreme prison sentences. We work in deep partnership with people currently in prison, those who have been released, and their family and social networks. All staff at the CFSY, regardless of role and position, engage in this connection and are regularly proximate to those directly impacted by the work we do.

To apply:

Email a letter of interest and resume to rturner@cfsy.org. Use “Legal Intern” as the subject of your email, and include your dates of availability. Only complete applications will be reviewed.

The CFSY is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. People of color, individuals with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, and those with personal experience in the criminal legal system are strongly encouraged to apply.