Legal Internship in Movement Lawyering & Policy Innovation

New York, NY

Position Location: New York City, NY. Remote applicants will be considered

The Center for Popular Democracy/CPD Action is seeking summer legal interns in Movement Lawyering & Policy Innovation. 

About CPD + CPDA

The Center for Popular Democracy and CPD Action (together, CPD/A) work to promote equity, opportunity, and a dynamic democracy in partnership with innovative base-building organizations, organizing networks and alliances, and progressive unions across the country. We currently work with more than 53 affiliates in 34 states and Puerto Rico, and build the strength and capacity of democratic organizations to envision and advance a pro-worker, pro-immigrant, racial and economic justice agenda. We are a rapidly-expanding, changing organization that partners with organizations across the country to build political power and win tangible victories that improve the lives of low-wage workers, immigrants, and communities of color.

About the Position:

We are seeking summer legal interns in Movement Lawyering & Policy Innovation. 

Legal interns will report to an attorney in one of our campaign areas based on the intern’s interests and organizational needs. CPD/A is developing and moving cutting-edge policies in partnership with some of the most sophisticated community and labor organizations in the country. Some of our current work includes: 

  • Demanding divestment from the criminalization of communities of color, and investment into their health, infrastructure and equity;

  • Fighting for strong public schools and against the privatization of public education;

  • Championing the rights of immigrants including by ending corporate support of immigrant detention and deportation, and ensuring access to universal legal representation for individuals facing deportation;

  • Fighting for housing justice including universal rent control, tenant protections and deep investments in affordable housing;

  • Advancing the next-generation of worker justice policies, including fighting wage theft, winning minimum wage increases and the right to paid sick days, fighting fluctuating schedules and involuntary part-timing of work, and policies that facilitate worker organizing; 

  • Advocating for policies that expand the franchise and make it easier to vote;

  • Organizing for healthcare justice through the fight for Medicare for All, working to end the nation’s opioid/overdose epidemic and the war on drugs, and pushing back on the high cost of prescription medications; 

  • Pressing for elite economic institutions such as the Federal Reserve Bank to be more transparent and accountable to low-income communities;

  • Supporting local elected officials across the country who are seeking to move progressive local public policy in their communities.

Interns will be expected to work 40 hours/week for 10 weeks and will be supervised directly by CPD’s staff. The internship typically begins after Memorial Day and runs until the second week of August. Specific dates will be provided before the start. Interns typically are based out of our New York City office, but interns interested in working off site may be considered depending on their level of experience and desired focus of work. CPD/A offices are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We will make an assessment about whether the internship will be virtual or in person based on public health guidance in the spring. 

Primary Responsibilities

Students will provide critically important support for CPD’s work in issue areas through:

  • Legal research and analysis that supports development of viable policy options;

  • Policy research and analysis that identifies and evaluates approaches taken in jurisdictions across the country 

In addition, interns will conduct campaign research that informs strategy and produce related materials such as draft legislative language, proposal summaries and op-eds.  

Job Requirements 

  • 1Ls and 2Ls welcome to apply;  

  • A demonstrated commitment to social and racial justice, and fluency and understanding of the challenges facing Black and other communities of color, young people of color, immigrant communities, and low-and moderate income families; and

  • Strong research and writing skills.  

Salary and Benefits:

This is an unpaid internship. Interns must receive stipends or class credit for their work and provide documentation of funding or credit. CPD/A will provide any necessary information and support to applications for funding or credit. 

HOW TO APPLY: Please submit a cover letter, resume and three references. If you are applying through a public interest career fair, we will review your application through the fair’s system. If you are applying outside of one of the fairs, please submit your cover letter and resume through our HiringThing portal:


CPD/A is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer and actively recruits people of color, womxn, individuals with disabilities and members of the LGBTIQAA+ community.