HIV/AIDS Staff Attorney (Cincinnati, Columbus, or Cleveland)

Position Description: HIV/AIDS Staff Attorney (Cincinnati, Columbus, or Cleveland)

Overview of Role:
Equality Ohio Education Fund is seeking applicants for 1 state-wide legal clinic attorney position which will be based out of either our Cleveland, Cincinnati, or Columbus office. Grant-funded by the American Bar Association, this position will be focused on the provision of legal services for LGBTQ individuals living with HIV/AIDS. While the position will be based in a single office, representation and possible travel throughout the state is anticipated.

Note: Due to COVID-19, Equality Ohio is working remotely and will continue to do so for the health and safety of community members and staff. However, some Ohio courts are requiring in-person appearances, so some work in the community may be required. If and when Equality Ohio returns to office-based work, ample notice will be provided.

November 2, 2004, was a turning point for Ohio’s LGBTQ+ community. In spite of the efforts of thousands of community members and allies, ? of Ohio’s voters passed a measure limiting our legal rights in the state we call home. We were devastated.

Across the state, political insiders, grassroots activists, and everyday Ohioans who had never before been politically engaged, all reached the same conclusion: something new, something strategic, had to be done to protect our communities and one another. In 2005, sixty-five people, diverse in gender, race, religion, and region of Ohio, answered the call and gathered in the basement of a church in Columbus. After two long days, one vision emerged: an Ohio that everyone can call home. Equality Ohio (a 501c4 organization) and Equality Ohio Education Fund (a 501c3 organization) were born.

In the years since, Equality Ohio has changed hearts, minds and laws in service of creating an Ohio where people are welcome, affirmed and flourishing.

Our Mission: Equality Ohio identifies and transforms systems and institutions so LGBTQ+ Ohioans can fully access legal and lived equality.

Our Vision: An Ohio where people are welcome, affirmed and flourishing.

The Legal Clinic:
Informed by research, needs assessment and best practices, the Equality Ohio Legal Clinic opened to the public in March 2019 with staff attorneys in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. Equality Ohio’s Legal Clinic is the only statewide program specifically providing access to legal services and redress for the LGBTQ+ community. The Equality Ohio Legal Clinic seeks to empower LGBTQ+ individuals to know their rights, exercise their rights, and seek services to defend their rights when violated, despite the patchwork of protections currently in place. We are known statewide as the go-to organization for LGBTQ+ individuals seeking redress for wrongs that they have experienced, including discrimination in the realms of housing, employment, public services, within state agency processes, in prisons, and in difficulty accessing documentation assistance.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Provide direct civil and minor criminal legal representation for People Living with HIV/AIDS(PLWHA) in Ohio;
  • Represent and assist with the Ohio Health Modernization Movement (OHMM) [ohmodernizenow.org], of which Equality Ohio is the facilitator;
  • Conduct legal and quasi-legal research as part of OHMM’s comprehensive strategy to decriminalize HIV;
  • Create and present educational training sessions to community members, lawmakers, and policy influencers;
  • Conduct email, telephonic, and in-person intake for individuals needing legal assistance;
  • Assist in the referral and follow-up of referrals to outside social service agencies or attorneys as appropriate;
  • Conduct outreach to HIV/AIDS-servicing practitioners across the state to create collaboration and referral opportunities;
  • Create/update HIV-related Know-Your-Rights pamphlets, materials, videos and brochures;
  • Organize monthly HIV-related Know-Your-Rights workshops across the state;
  • Develop tools for social media outreach and information dissemination via YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Attorney Blog, etc; and
  • Other tasks as assigned.

Required Qualifications & Desired Skill Sets:

  • Barred attorney in the state of Ohio in good standing
  • Specific knowledge of and experience practicing with laws impacting people living with HIV/AIDS in Ohio strongly desired
  • Demonstrated familiarity and comfort working with the LGBTQ community
  • Specific knowledge of and experience working with people living with HIV/AIDS strongly desired
  • Demonstrated passion for public interest and social justice work
  • Excellent oral, written and listening communication skills
  • Ability to work with diverse groups in an intersectional manner and across all levels of organizations with a commitment to teamwork
  • Effective public speaking and presentation skills
  • Demonstrated reliability, creativity, versatility, and initiative
  • Proficiency with Office (Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook), Google Drive, and LexisNexis/Westlaw or other legal research software
  • Have a valid driver’s license, regular access to a vehicle with insurance, and ability to travel across the state

Characteristics: Resourceful, Charismatic, Detail-Oriented, Flexible, Self-Motivated, Passionate

Compensation: $60,000 salary + benefits, including paid time off and medical, vision, and dental insurance options

Application Instructions: Applicants should send a cover letter and resume to employment@equalityohio.org. Please note that resumes sent without a cover letter will not be considered. Please indicate in your cover letter the office(s) at which you are seeking to be based. Writing samples are encouraged, though not required.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Candidates are encouraged to submit their materials as early as possible.

EOEF embraces a policy of nondiscrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, HIV status, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations, marital status, height and weight (or physical appearance/characteristics), family relationships or other protected category. This policy is followed by every staff member and agent of EOEF insofar as they represent EOEF or may appear to be representing EOEF.

*People Living with HIV/AIDS, people of color, LGBTQ+ people, and those with gender-expansive identities are strongly encouraged to apply.*