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Internship - Mental Health Litigation Division - Pyschology & the Law

Company: Committee for Public Counsel Services
Location: lawrence
Posted on: May 3, 2021

Job Description:


The Mental Health Litigation Division (MHLD) of the Committee for Public Counsel Services has an opening for a Internship. The internship will be located in Lawrence, MA.


CPCS is committed to protecting the fundamental constitutional and human rights of its clients by providing zealous advocacy, community-oriented defense, and excellent representation. In fulfilling its mission, CPCS is committed to fostering diversity at all levels of the agency. We are dedicated to building a strong professional relationship with each of our clients, to understanding their diverse circumstances, and to meeting their needs. In striving always to achieve those goals, CPCS embraces diversity and inclusion as core values and is steadfast in our commitment to: (1) ensuring that CPCS management and staff members represent a broad range of human difference and experience; (2) providing a work climate that is respectful and that supports success; and (3) promoting the dignity and well-being of all staff members. CPCS's leadership is responsible for ensuring excellence, diversity, and inclusion. Our ability to achieve these goals depends on the efforts of all of us.


CPCS is the state agency in Massachusetts responsible for providing an attorney when the state or federal constitution or a state statute requires the appointment of an attorney for a person who cannot afford to retain one. The agency provides representation in criminal, delinquency, youthful offender, child welfare, guardianship, mental health, sexually dangerous person, and sex offender registry cases, as well as in appeals and post-conviction and post-judgment proceedings related to those matters.


The Mental Health Litigation Division is committed to protecting the legal and constitutional rights of citizens facing civil commitment to mental hospitals, Guardianships and involuntary treatment including the administration of anti-psychotic medications. We do this through four staffed offices and a panel of private attorneys. All of our attorneys receive training in issues relating to mental health and the statutory and constitutional rights of our clients. We also provide training to attorneys in other divisions in mental health issues.

The Mental Health Litigation Division provides attorneys for civil commitment proceedings in the District Courts and the Boston Municipal Court as well as attorneys in the Probate and Family Courts for guardianships, substituted judgment proceedings, and cases involving the validation of health care proxies. Civil commitments are handled by both panel attorneys and staff attorneys, while all of the cases in Probate Court are handled by private panel attorneys. The Mental Health Litigation Division also houses the Alternative Commitment Unit, charged with defending clients who are subject to Sexually Dangerous Person Petitions.



* Undergraduate students must be in their junior or senior year, with a major in psychology, criminal justice, or legal studies. * Graduate students must be in their second (or subsequent) year of a Master's or Ph.D. program in psychology, criminology, or a closely-related field, with demonstrated research interests in legal psychology.

Students should be willing to commit 6-12 hours per week to their internship experience, for a minimum of one full semester. Depending on the student's specific interests, internship work may be completed remotely. Graduate students seeking longer internships (e.g. spanning a full academic or calendar year) are preferred.


Students interested in applying for an internship may do so on a rolling basis. Along with a current resume or CV, students should include a 1-page cover letter explaining their interest and goals for the internship experience. In their cover letters, students must specify (a) whether they will be seeking academic credit through an internship course, and (b) the number of hours and desired duration for their internship. Students should also include a brief recommendation note from a faculty member (the student's main advisor or mentor), indicating that the student is academically prepared for the internship and supported in their decision to apply.



The Mental Health Litigation Division is pleased to offer an unpaid research internship for (a) advanced undergraduate students and (b) graduate degree candidates interested in pursuing research and exploring career opportunities related psychology and law, under the supervision of a doctoral-level psychological researcher.

As part of the program, and depending on individual interest, interns will have the opportunity to experience research in an applied, legal setting, working on projects that involve

* literature review, collection and cleaning of data, analysis, writing, and presentation of findings. * In addition, students may observe and review court cases, read legal briefs and opinions, and attend legal training (across CPCS divisions). * Academic credit for internship experience may be provided, if desired.

EEO Statement

The Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, disability, religion, age, veteran or military status, genetic information, gender identity, or sexual orientation as required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other applicable federal and state statutes and organizational policies. Applicants who have questions about equal employment opportunity or who need reasonable accommodations can contact the Director of Human Resources Management, Lisa Bacon, at

Keywords: Committee for Public Counsel Services, Lawrence , Internship - Mental Health Litigation Division - Pyschology & the Law, Other , lawrence, Massachusetts

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