The Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem (NDS) is a community-based, client-centered, holistic public defense office located in Harlem, providing civil, criminal and family representation to residents of Northern Manhattan. NDS seeks to hire an experienced Housing Court litigator to be a Supervising Attorney for our Housing Defense Team.

OVERVIEW

The Housing Defense Team, part of the Civil Defense Practice, plays an integral role in NDS’s fulfillment of its holistic mission and in realizing the right to counsel in housing proceedings. The practice is part of the monumental movement toward a civil Gideon, providing assigned counsel representation to low- and no-income tenants facing a wide range of eviction proceedings in order to safeguard the right to secure, stable housing and combat the destabilization and disintegration of New York’s diverse communities. The Supervising Attorney is responsible for supervising all aspects of the Housing Defense Team’s work and ensuring the delivery of high quality, client-centered representation.

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Supervise attorney and non-attorney advocates in providing excellent, client-centered representation to low- and no-income tenants as assigned counsel in Housing Court proceedings;
  • Promote professional development of staff members through regular case reviews, litigation support, trainings, evaluations, and mentorship;
  • Oversee institutional assignments including the staffing of in-court and other intake and assign cases among staff;
  • Handle modest caseload providing representation to individual tenants in Housing Court;
  • Engage with agencies and stakeholders to promote the effective implementation of the right to counsel;
  • Represent NDS at Coalition meetings and community-based initiatives on housing issues on an as-needed basis; and
  • Embrace NDS’ philosophy of client-centered, community-based, holistic representation and commitment to excellence.

QUALIFICATIONS 

  • A demonstrated commitment to social justice issues and experience working with individuals of diverse backgrounds;
  • J.D. Degree and admission to practice law in New York State or eligible for admission;
  • At least five years of experience providing direct services to low-income tenants in Housing Court;
  • A comprehensive knowledge of New York State housing law and practice;
  • Excellent organizational and communication skills;
  • Demonstrated leadership capabilities;
  • Must be able to travel throughout New York City to the various courts, administrative agencies and to client appointments;*
  • Fluency in Spanish is strongly preferred.

*Please note that NDS’s office and the New York City Housing Court are currently operating remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon reopening, the Staff Attorney position will be an in-person position based in NDS’s Harlem office.

COMPENSATION

Compensation is commensurate with experience and is in adherence to the NDS compensation scale.  Full medical and dental benefits, as well as other benefits, are provided.\

HOW TO APPLY

Interested applicants should email a cover letter and resume as a single PDF with the subject line, “Supervising Attorney, Housing Defense Practice” to: eponder@ndsny.org.

The Neighborhood Defender Service is committed to creating a diverse environment that reflects the community we serve. NDS is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status. NDS encourages people with incarcerated loved ones, formerly incarcerated people, people of color, women, queer, transgender, gender non-conforming, and gender fluid people to apply.