CAIR-Chicago is a local office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). CAIR is the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights organization and was established to promote an accurate image of Islam and Muslims in America. CAIR-Chicago’s mission is to defend civil rights, fight bigotry, and promote tolerance. The Civil Rights Department counsels, mediates, and advocates on behalf of Muslims and others who have experienced religious discrimination, defamation, or hate crimes. The Department works to protect and defend the constitutional rights of Muslims to freely practice their religion and be treated in a non-discriminatory manner.
The Trial Attorney in CAIR-Chicago’s Civil Rights Department develops strategies for cases reported to the Department, represents complainants who have experienced discrimination, and facilitates resolutions ranging from proactive measures to full litigation of complaints in court. Litigation of CAIR-Chicago’s cases entails filing complaints, engaging in written and oral discovery (occasionally expert discovery), briefing summary judgment motions, and presenting cases at administrative hearings and court trials (including jury trials). The Trial Attorney also assists in the general management of the Department when necessary, including overseeing interns and externs.
Examples of the matters litigated by CAIR-Chicago include employment discrimination, denials of public accommodations, discrimination against students, mosque zoning disputes, and delays in immigration benefits for Muslim immigrants.
In addition to pursuing individual complaints of religious discrimination, the Department has implemented several ongoing special projects that target important issues in the diverse Muslim communities:
- Citizenship Delay Project – works to end the lengthy delays in the citizenship process for Muslims applying for U.S. citizenship.
- Asylum Project – seeks to protect refugees from Middle Eastern countries who are unwilling or unable to return to their home country due to past persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.
- Employment Discrimination Project – assists Muslims facing religious discrimination in the workplace.
- Travel Free Project – addresses complaints of Muslims encountering problems while traveling.
- Police Misconduct Project – advocates and represents clients in cases of discriminatory treatment by law enforcement.
- FBI Project – assists individuals contacted by FBI agents, fully protecting their constitutional rights when being questioned.
- Prison Project – secures the rights of Muslim inmates to practice their religion freely as well as seeks to ensure that inmates are treated humanely.
The Trial Attorney assists on working with staff members and interns/externs on all of these projects.
- At least three years of plaintiff-side litigation experience preferred, with admission to the Illinois State Bar and the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois.
- Self-motivated, well-organized, and demonstrated ability to multi-task.
- Ability to participate in all stages of complex litigation and to formulate and implement sophisticated legal strategies.
- Excellent writing and analytical skills.
- Ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with attorneys, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions.
- Ability to communicate effectively in legal and non-legal settings with a wide range of individuals and organizations.
- Interest in protecting civil liberties in the United States.
To apply please send a Cover Letter, Writing Samples (limited to 15 pages), and Resume to Deputy Director, Sufyan Sohel at email@example.com. Please write ‘Trial Attorney” in the Subject heading. The deadline for applications is 12:00pm CST on Friday, May 8th.
YOUTH DEVELOPMENT FELLOW:
Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
- Coordinate the Muslim Youth Leadership Symposium (MYLS) initiative, including its development, maintenance, and visibility
- Bolster and sustain viable recruitment and retention of participants, while also establishing incentives
- Plan and administer two symposiums annually that encourages community service and civic engagement in youth
- Facilitate post-symposium youth project development and educational initiatives
- Secure funding through grants and donations to ensure vitality and growth
- Expand the initiative to reach more students across the greater Chicago metropolitan region and Illinois
- Assist in recruitment and hiring of area high school students of all backgrounds for junior-level internships at CAIR-Chicago
- Identify, establish, develop and maintain strategic partnerships and relations with organizations and institutions based in the greater Chicago metropolitan area and Illinois
- Experience in working with youth, specifically high school students
- Prior event, preferably conference, planning experience
- Strong organizational and multi-tasking skills
- Demonstrate the ability to follow through the various on-going and newly assigned tasks
- Excellent oral and written communications skills
- Ability to work well under pressure
- Friendly, outgoing, and demonstrate strong leadership skills
- Possess an adept knowledge on the Muslim community profile, issues and networks, as well as the exhaustive cultural, sociopolitical, economic and other demographic nuances of the greater Chicago metropolitan region and Illinois
HOW TO APPLY
To apply, submit the following documents to Outreach Coordinator Gerald Hankerson at firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Application Form, signed and dated with all spaces filled with the most updated information and truthful responses, and submitted through email only; (Click here to download a PDF of the application)
- Cover Letter that specifies the position and session (i.e., Winter-Spring, Summer, or Fall) you’re applying for, as well as your interests and qualifications;
- Résuméthat lists your most relevant and updated profile, including experience and contact information; and
- Sample Proposal of a youth conference, workshop or event that reflects CAIR-Chicago’s mission, vision and goals in advocacy and youth development, primarily through its MYLS initiative.
When applying via email please ensure to write the position title in the subject of the email.