Welcome to the website of Disability Rights Connecticut, Inc. (“DRCT”), a new independent, nonprofit organization established to be the successor entity to Connecticut’s Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities which was abolished by Connecticut law as of June 30, 2017. We are a statewide organization largely funded by federal entities and authorized by the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, Rehabilitation Act and Social Security Act. DRCT opened its doors on July 1, 2017 and is hoping to hear from you!!
Congressman John Larson Celebrates with DRCT Staff
Congressman John Larson met with staff at the DRCT office to celebrate passage of the Strengthening Protections for Social Security Beneficiaries Act (HR 4547). Congressman Larson, an author of the Act, celebrated with DRCT and gave them a signed copy for the office. The Act creates better protections for Social Security beneficiaries including improved oversight of the representative payees that are entrusted with managing their benefits. Under the Act, Disability Rights Connecticut will receive funding to provide critical monitoring of Social Security Representative Payees to ensure they are meeting their obligations to beneficiaries.
Job Opening - Legal Director - Closes on May 15, 2018
Disability Rights Connecticut, Inc. seeks a Legal Director to lead a dynamic advocacy organization that is dedicated to identifying and eliminating the barriers that people with disabilities face in exercising their civil, legal and human rights. The Legal Director will provide professional and managerial leadership to the organization as we work toward an improved quality of life for individuals with disabilities, their families and our community as a whole.
Disability Rights Connecticut, Inc. ("DRCT") is an independent, nonprofit organization established as the successor protection and advocacy system in Connecticut to Connecticut's Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities, which was abolished by Connecticut law on June 30, 2017. DRCT's mission is to advocate, educate, investigate and pursue legal, administrative, and other appropriate remedies to advance and protect the civil rights of individuals with disabilities to participate equally and fully in all facets of community life in Connecticut. We are a statewide organization largely funded by federal entities authorized by the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, Rehabilitation Act and the Social Security Act.
This position reports to and is responsible to the Executive Director. This is an exempt professional position. This position has responsibilities in the following areas:
• Agency Leadership: this individual participates as a member of the Executive Team with the Executive Director (ED); at the request of the ED or the Board of Directors, serves as Acting Director in the event that the ED is absent or otherwise unavailable; advises the organization on legal decisions and reviews contracts and other legal documents on behalf of the agency; participates in overall organizational leadership as a member of Management Team developing annual areas of work and priority setting, developing program benchmarks and improvements including standards for reporting, accountability, measuring success and providing quality assurance and program development recommendations to the Executive Director; develops and implements innovative methods that maximize the strength of DRCT’s resources and successfully addresses mission and grant requirements; participates in planning and applying for organization funding diversification including grant writing and other fund development activities; meets with auditors to review case files; participates in hiring decisions.
• Legal Team Management: this individual has day-to-day leadership and oversight of DRCT's legal work and legal team members; regular leadership and oversight of DRCT's advocacy work through supervision of DRCT's advocates and attorneys and coordination with other relevant parties; participates in regular case reviews with attorneys and advocates; engages in legal work on behalf of clients and DRCT; files impact litigation and delivers impact work through administrative and legislative advocacy; conducts annual job performance reviews and assists with the development of professional development plans with legal team members; signs legal and advocacy staff time and attendance records; reviews expense reports of legal team members; works with the Executive Director to recruit and hire legal team members; oversees orientation and training of new legal team members; ensures that legal team and all other agency staff comply with all relevant laws, rules, policies, procedures and rules of professional conduct; reviews and responds to complaints regarding intake and case services.
• Community Involvement and Systemic Advocacy: this individual participates in local, state and national boards, committees, councils, etc. to address identified program issues and concerns; builds coalitions and cultivates collaborative working relationships with other agencies and organizations in the disability and civil rights field; participates in projects that address systemic issues which fall under DRCT's program areas of work; collaborates with other DRCT staff as needed to develop content for newspaper articles, social media, annual report and other publications as well as live and recorded video and audio content; performs related tasks consistent with skills and abilities and general responsibilities as may be assigned by the Executive Director.
Qualifications for this position include:
• Juris Doctorate degree from an accredited law school or other law school approved by the Connecticut Supreme Court.
• Active Connecticut law license
• A minimum of 8-10 calendar years of experience handling disability rights litigation including multiparty or class litigation.
• A minimum 3-5 calendar years of demonstrated experience supervising and managing a legal services team
• Sound professional judgment
• Excellent critical thinking and evaluation skills
• Oral and written communication competency with attention to detail
• Ability to facilitate communication within teams and participate effectively as a member in teams
• Demonstrated commitment to the mission of DRCT through professional presentation
Desired skills and Abilities:
• Foundational leadership skills
• Understanding of and demonstrated expertise in human resource management and evaluation
• Exceptional time management and organizational skills
• Computer and word processing proficiency
• Ability to easily integrate new technology into work environment
This position description serves as a general summary and overview of the major duties and responsibilities of the job. It is not intended to represent the entirety of the job nor is it intended to be all-inclusive. Management reserves the right to modify, or rescind, this position description at any time, with or without prior notice.
Applications must include: (a) a letter expressing your interest in the position, your qualifications, and how you might contribute to the future of DRCT; (b) a current resume including the names and contact information of three references.
Materials should be submitted in Microsoft Word or PDF format and emailed by May 15, 2018 at 5:00 PM to the Executive Director, Gretchen Knauff at email@example.com.
DRCT is a fair employment practices/equal opportunity/disability accessible employer committed to maintaining a diverse workplace. Qualified candidates from diverse personal, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
Job Type: Full-time