Full-Time Associate Legal Advisor
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of the Principal Legal Advisor (OPLA) Human Rights Violator Law Division (HRVLD) which advised the DHS Center for Countering Human Trafficking (CCHT) is seeking an attorney for an Associate Legal Advisor position in Washington, D.C. to handle issues relating to human trafficking, T visas, U visas, Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), and Continued Presence, including, at a minimum the duty to:
- Advise on a day-to-day basis the DHS Center for Countering Human Trafficking, coordinating additional legal support from other relevant OPLA divisions, in addition to HSI Special Agents engaged in criminal investigations of human trafficking;
- Provide support and training to HSI embedded OPLA attorneys who are advising HSI Special Agents conducting criminal human trafficking investigations;
- Advise OPLA attorneys on the removal of human traffickers;
- Advise HSI, OPLA and ERO on Continued Presence, T visas, U visas and VAWA;
- Lead the OPLA T/U/VAWA Points of Contact Program;
- Prepare and deliver briefings to assist Department of Homeland Security, ICE, HSI, and OPLA leadership;
- Review related legislation, external communications, federal interagency documents, and policies;
- Provide well-reasoned legal and policy advice regarding human trafficking and victim protection, including immigration and criminal law issues; and
- Develop and present trainings on substantive areas of law.
For this position, HRVLD primarily provides legal advice to DHS Center for Countering Human Trafficking personnel, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agents, HSI Victim Assistance Program personnel, and OPLA attorneys. HRVLD’s work contributes to significant policy decisions integral to ICE’s mission. Assignments within HRVLD are fast-paced and involve high-profile work. HRVLD attorneys advise, counsel, and train attorneys, agents and officers on legal authorities, best practices, and agency policies on a wide array of issues.
HRVLD attorneys work closely with a wide range of ICE program offices, as described. They also work with other DHS component agencies and offices, and other federal agencies and departments.
The selected attorney will immediately be given significant responsibilities and will be expected to craft legally supportable policies to address the needs of agency operational components. The attorney will be expected to routinely provide timely legal opinions to ICE officers and agents, HRVLD management, and leadership within OPLA, ICE, and the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the General Counsel Headquarters. The selected attorney will be required to assess litigation risk and provide litigation support to the Department of Justice.
OPLA is the largest legal program in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), employing over 1,000 attorneys nationwide. In addition to Headquarters in Washington, D.C., there are 25 OPLA field locations in more than 60 cities throughout the United States. Pursuant to statute, OPLA serves as the exclusive representative of DHS in removal proceedings before the Executive Office for Immigration Review litigating cases involving criminal noncitizens, terrorists, human rights abusers, and other priority noncitizens. OPLA also provides a full range of legal services to all ICE programs and offices.
OPLA provides legal advice and prudential counsel to ICE personnel on their law enforcement authorities, legal liability under the Federal Tort Claims Act and Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Fed. Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971), the Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act, ethics, and a range of administrative law issues, such as contract, fiscal and employment law. OPLA represents the agency before the Merit Systems Protection Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Contract Board of Appeals. OPLA attorneys support the Department of Justice in the prosecution of ICE cases and in the defense of civil cases against the ICE.
OPLA fosters an environment in which all voices are heard and values the unique perspectives and opinions that inhere among a talented, diverse, and inclusive workforce. Comprising a far more diverse workforce than its private sector counterparts, OPLA is proud to strive to further diversify the experiences, perspectives, and characteristics of its workforce and is committed to celebrating our differences and embracing practices that foster a fair, safe, and inclusive workplace by promoting equitable access to opportunities.
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