Who We Are
Columbia Legal Services is a legal advocacy organization that advances social, economic, and racial equity for people living in poverty. We hold government agencies, institutions, and other actors accountable to address the root causes of racism and their manifestation in unfair treatment and inequitable access to resources, power, and opportunities based on race. We focus on dismantling unfair systems of mass incarceration and immigration. We believe that communities should have a voice in the creation and implementation of the policies, laws, and legal systems that impact them.
We are committed to an environment of mutual respect, collaboration, and equal opportunity for all employees, and strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, people who have been affected by mass incarceration, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups. We believe in building and sustaining an organization that is reflective of the communities we serve, and is diverse in work background, experience, education, race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, ancestry, national origin, or sensory, mental and physical abilities. We believe that the resulting diversity is both a source of program strength and a matter of fundamental human fairness.
Externs and Interns are given the opportunity to participate in systemic advocacy on behalf of low-income people by engaging in legal research and writing, policy advocacy, and community outreach and education. Our summer internships are full-time and require a 10-12 week commitment.
COVID-19 Protocol: At the time of this posting, the CLS team is projecting that we will likely be working remotely into the summer. We are filling these internships based on the assumption that COVID-19 safety recommendations will prevent us from returning to an in-person work environment. However, should safety recommendations shift, we will offer onsite work space.
Advocacy Interns (All Locations) (2 positions)
Our Advocacy team is seeking 2 law student interns or externs to assist with their litigation and policy advocacy. Strong research and writing skills and interest in the criminal justice system are preferred. Advocacy team priorities include treatment of youth in the juvenile and adult criminal justice systems, conditions of confinement in Washington’s jails and prisons, legal assistance for people reentering the community following incarceration as well as litigation and policy efforts to improve wages and work conditions in concert with farmworker groups engaged in self-organizing, and to address systemic civil rights issues for immigrants in farmworker communities.
Laurel Rubin Farmworker Justice Interns (Yakima, Wenatchee) (1 position)
The Laurel Rubin Farm Worker Justice interns are funded positions with a $6,000 stipend. Interns must speak fluent Spanish. Interns will support litigation and policy efforts to improve wages and work conditions in concert with farmworker groups engaged in self-organizing, and to address systemic civil rights issues for immigrants in farmworker communities. Interns will engage in investigation, legal research and writing, and community outreach, primarily to labor encampments.