California Collaborative for Immigrant Justice & California ChangeLawyers®

Year Long

Oakland, CA

Start date: September 2022 or earlier 

Application Deadline: Rolling Basis

About California Collaborative for Immigrant Justice

The California Collaborative for Immigrant Justice (CCIJ) supports innovative approaches to liberation and empowerment of detained immigrants and their communities. We envision a world where everyone’s right to a life free from fear, incarceration (physical or electronic), or family separation is respected. We strive to elevate the lived experiences of detained immigrants by centering their voices and humanity in all our work. We believe that no human should ever be caged, and we understand that true liberation will only be achieved when directly impacted individuals are empowered to demand freedom and respect for their human rights. 


We seek to empower immigrants in detention and their communities through technical assistance, education, and participatory defense strategies, while also advancing advocacy, policy and litigation initiatives consistent with the goals of abolition and freedom for immigrants in detention. Our work incorporates rapid response, detained representation, legal screenings, and data strategy. 


About the California ChangeLawyers Legal Fellowship Program

California ChangeLawyers® (formerly California Bar Foundation) is a statewide foundation that empowers the next generation of lawyers, judges, and activists to create a more diverse legal profession, a fair justice system, and a better California. The foundation believes that a state as diverse as California should have a justice system led by advocates of all ethnicities and races.


ChangeLawyers℠ Fellowships support bright, diverse ChangeLawyers℠ who are committed to righting historical wrongs. Grants are awarded to legal aid organizations to cover the cost of hiring legal fellows from diverse backgrounds. This is a double impact investment. The foundation supports organizations on the front lines of social justice while at the same time creating jobs for diverse lawyers. This creates better, and more authentic outcomes for communities—communities who can see and interact with lawyers who look like them.


Position Description

With support from California ChangeLawyers®, we seek to hire a full-time, year-long Legal Fellow to increase our representation of detained immigrants before the Immigration Court, Board of Immigration Appeals, as well as habeas petitions before federal district courts. The fellow will also work on detention accountability through AB3228, a California law providing detained individuals a cause of action against private detention operators who violate detention standards. 

This position is remote, but will require occasional in-person work at our office in Oakland, California, with occasional travel to courts and detention centers in Central and Southern California.


We are interested in sponsoring a fellow to work on detention accountability through AB3228, a California law providing detained individuals a cause of action against private detention operators who violate detention standards. The new law provides a critical tool to hold private detention operators accountable and seek justice for immigrants who have suffered abuse in detention. CCIJ has launched the AB3228 Accountability Project, a litigation and advocacy project to hold private detention operators accountable for human rights violations and push to abolish private detention. The Legal Fellow will report to CCIJ’s Legal Director. 

Primary Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the Legal Fellow will include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Provide direct representation to individuals in immigration detention in California. This may include representation in credible fear and reasonable fear interviews, representation in immigration proceedings and custody redetermination hearings before the Immigration Court and representation before the Board of Immigration Appeals, and representation before federal district courts in habeas petitions. 

  • Screen, triage, and assign responsibility for requests for legal assistance received through CCIJ remote legal clinics and hotline calls.

  • Conduct and/or coordinate follow up on detained cases referred through CCIJ hotline and remote clinics, including but not limited to consultations with detainees and/or their families, providing legal materials, referring cases for pro bono representation, and flagging issues related to abuse, compliance, and/or advocacy needs.

  • Participate in on-site detention legal clinics as needed.

  • Assist with advocacy and media outreach for CCIJ and partner organizations as needed. 


Qualifications and Requirements

  • Must be fully fluent in Spanish (i.e. able to speak to clients in Spanish without an interpreter and able translate written materials in English to Spanish). 

  • The applicant must be licensed to practice law in any jurisdiction (California Bar preferred), or plan to take the July 2022 bar exam. 

  • We are seeking applicants with immigration experience, including immigration paralegal experience, organizing experience, and/or law school clinic experience. We also seek applicants with experience (personal and/or professional) with populations CCIJ serves, including people in detention, immigrant communities, and individuals who have been impacted by  the criminal legal system. 


This position requires occasional travel to detention facilities and courts throughout California. The applicant must be located within the state of California.  


Salary Range

The salary for this position is $58,000-70,000. Benefits include health, dental, Flex Spending/Dependent Care/Parking/Transportation Accounts, 403(b) retirement plan and three (3) weeks of paid time off per year, plus holiday closures, which includes additional office closure around the December holidays.


To Apply

Applications, including a detailed cover letter explaining your interest in the position, resume, and at least two references, should be submitted online at:, with the subject line “California ChangeLawyers Legal Fellow.” Applications that do not contain all of the above-listed required materials will not be considered.  


Applications should be submitted as soon as possible. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until the position is filled, and applicants will be notified once they are selected for an interview or no longer under consideration. Please no inquiries or phone calls.


California Collaborative for Immigrant Justice is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in both its staff and work.