Paralegal [VRP-15] - Voting Rights Project, DC

  • American Civil Liberties Union
  • Washington D.C., DC, USA
  • Apr 29, 2019
Full time Legal

Job Description

Paralegal [VRP-15] - Voting Rights Project, DC


Office:  National Offices, Washington, DC

Location:  District of Columbia

APRIL 26, 2019


Paralegal [VRP-15]

American Civil Liberties Union Foundation

Voting Rights Project, Washington, DC


For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.  Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, advancing racial justice, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, or preserving the right to vote or the right to have an abortion, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties and civil rights cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. With more than one million members, activists, and supporters, the ACLU is a nationwide organization that fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, national origin, record of arrest or conviction.


The ACLU’s Voting Rights Project seeks applicants for a full-time Paralegal position.  The position will be in the ACLU’s Washington, D.C. office, and will support a team of ACLU staff attorneys working on enforcement of the National Voter Registration Act (also known as the federal “Motor-Voter Law”), which, among other things, requires states to provide voter registration services as DMVs and public assistance offices.



The ACLU Voting Rights Project was established in 1965 – the same year that the historic Voting Rights Act (VRA) was enacted – and has litigated more than 300 cases since that time. Its mission is to ensure that all Americans can participate freely and equally in the political process. The Project employs an integrated advocacy approach, combating voter suppression measures through a combination of legislative advocacy and litigation, and has active cases in over a dozen states.

Within the last few years, the Voting Rights Project has represented parties in two voting rights cases on the merits before the Supreme Court: representing plaintiffs in Arizona v. ITCA, a successful challenge to Arizona’s imposition of onerous documentary proof of citizenship requirements for voter registration; and representing intervenors in Shelby County v. Holder, defending the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  The Voting Rights Project will represent immigrants' rights groups before the Supreme Court on April 23, in a challenge to the inclusion of a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

The Project has been active in significant litigation at the trial and appellate levels in recent election cycles, including:

  • In the 2012 election cycle, federal and state litigation that successfully blocked early voting reductions and restrictions on voter registration drives in Florida, as well as the implementation of voter ID laws in Texas, South Carolina, and Pennsylvania.
  • In the 2014 election cycle, litigation that successfully blocked voter ID laws in Pennsylvania (again), Arkansas, and Wisconsin; as well as cases challenging restrictions on early voting and registration in Ohio and North Carolina.
  • In the 2016 election cycle, litigation challenging restrictions in North Carolina (again), Kansas, and Wisconsin.

A commitment to racial justice is the core of the Project’s work, and is the lens through which the Project views voting rights controversies.

The Voting Rights Project is part of the ACLU’s Center for Democracy, which works to strengthen democratic institutions and values, including the values of government transparency and accountability, and to reinforce the United States’ commitment to human rights and the rule of law.  The Center for Democracy includes the National Security Project; the Human Rights Program; the Project on Speech, Privacy, and Technology; the Immigrants’ Rights Project; and the Voting Rights Project.



  • Prepare, file, review and organize litigation documents such as briefs, motions, declarations, deposition summaries, discovery requests and responses, and correspondence with co-counsel
  • Manage and coordinate intake database; maintain case files, attorneys’ correspondence files, summary of the VRP litigation docket, etc.
  • Provide litigation support to attorneys
  • Collect, analyze, and organize legal, factual, social science and other non-legal research for use in investigations, litigation documents and policy presentations; run searches on internal and external document databases and systems, cull statistics and relevant information from a variety of resources such as newspapers, magazines, libraries, case documents and trade associations
  • Act as liaison among various internal departments as well as with co-counsel and partner organizations
  • Demonstrate a commitment to diversity within the office using a personal approach that values all individuals and respects differences in regards to race, ethnicity, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, ability and socio-economic circumstance
  • Work collaboratively and respectfully toward resolving obstacles and/or conflicts
  • Handle special projects and other duties as assigned



  • Bachelor’s degree is required and one year of paralegal or related experience is preferred
  • Excellent research skills, including internet research
  • Must have outstanding verbal, written, and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to work independently as well as within a team
  • Must take initiative, be highly organized, detail-oriented and possess strong time-management skills
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and see projects through to completion
  • Strong computer skills with advanced knowledge in Microsoft Office Suite e.g. Outlook, Word, Excel, etc. Basic knowledge of Westlaw is preferred
  • Experience analyzing basic statistics and using spreadsheets is preferred
  • Experience creating tables of contents, tables of authorities, mail merges, and creating/inserting macros
  • A demonstrated commitment to civil rights and civil liberties issues



The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.



Interested persons should submit a cover letter, a resume, a non-fiction writing sample (sample will not be returned) and three (3) references by email to  Reference  [VRP-15]  in the subject line.


Please indicate in your cover letter where you learned of this career opportunity.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.


This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required.  It does not represent a contract of employment.  The ACLU reserves the right to change the job description and/or posting at any time without advance notice.

The ACLU is an equal opportunity employer.  We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture.  The ACLU encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, disability, veteran status and record of arrest or conviction.

The ACLU undertakes affirmative action strategies in its recruitment and employment efforts to assure that persons with disabilities have full opportunities for employment in all positions.

We encourage applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations in the application process to contact:  Correspondence sent to this email address that is not related to requests for accommodations will not be reviewed. Applicants should follow the instructions above regarding how to apply.

The ACLU comprises two separate corporate entities, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation.  Both the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Foundation are national organizations with the same overall mission, and share office space and employees.  The ACLU has two separate corporate entities in order to do a broad range of work to protect civil liberties.  This job posting refers collectively to the two organizations under the name “ACLU.”




The ACLU offers a generous and comprehensive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with experience and within parameters of the ACLU compensation scale.