Organizational Background: Southern Migrant Legal Services (“SMLS”) is a project of Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc. (“TRLA”), one of the nation’s largest nonprofit corporations that provides civil legal services to eligible, low-income persons. TRLA is one of the nation’s premier law firms in representing migrant and seasonal farmworkers, with over 30 years of experience in zealous, fearless, and effective advocacy. Opened in Nashville in 2001, SMLS provides free employment-related legal services to seasonal and migrant farm, poultry, catfish, nursery, and forestry workers in Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee.
Most of SMLS’s work is employment litigation in federal court. SMLS’s litigation has included representation of farmworkers (including victims of labor trafficking) with claims under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (AWPA), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPRA), 42 U.S.C. § 1981, 42 U.S.C. § 1983, the federal H-2A program, and state contract, wage-and-hour, tort, and worker's compensation legislation. SMLS also assists victims of labor trafficking and severe workplace crimes to obtain immigration relief.
For more information on TRLA and SMLS, please visit:
Paralegal: Southern Migrant Legal Services (SMLS), A Project of Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc., seeks a full-time, year-round paralegal for its Nashville office. SMLS provides free employment-related legal services to low-income migrant farm workers in six southern states. The paralegal must be fluent in written and spoken English and Spanish. Preference will be given to applicants with a demonstrated commitment to social justice, especially in the areas of workers and immigrants’ rights. Duties include (but aren’t limited to): conducting outreach in rural areas during evening and weekends, performing client intakes, preparing community legal education materials, investigating cases, assisting attorneys in litigation, communicating with community organizations and other service providers, referring individuals to other agencies and attorneys and any other duties as necessary. Applicants must have a valid driver’s license. Applicants must be willing and able to travel extensively, overnight, especially during the spring and summer months. Proficient word processing, internet, and office skills are also required.
How to Apply: Email a cover letter, resume (listing all relevant experience with start and end dates of employment) and three professional references (from prior supervisors) to firstname.lastname@example.org and SMLS Managing Attorney, Caitlin Berberich, at email@example.com.
Application Deadline: Position open until filled, with preferred start date as soon as possible.
Pay and Benefits: Salary commensurate with experience and based upon a 40-hour workweek (although occasional overtime (with overtime compensation) may be required. TRLA is an equal opportunity employer that seeks a diverse workforce. TRLA offers a benefits package that includes various paid vacation and sick leave days (including all federal holidays); medical, dental, and disability coverage; life insurance; and a retirement plan. TRLA has a unionized workforce (membership is optional).