Access Social Care (London) – Legal Services Director
Accountable to: CEO
Location: Home working with occasional need to travel
Type: Permanent full-time. Part-time working will be considered
Hours: Flexible (our full-time working week is currently 37.5 hours)
Salary: £70k starting salary (dependant on experience)
Why Access Social Care Exists
Every day millions of older and disabled people are denied the social care they need. Most local authorities can’t meet the growing demand for care, and none are confident they can meet their legal duties in the future. This affects all of us – we will all need social care at some point in our lives. We all have a right to hold public bodies to account, but most of us cannot afford lawyers so rely on legal aid. The 92% drop in legal aid cases since 2010 means that we have nowhere to turn. Without access to justice, our rights do not exist. The rule of law is broken.
What we do
Access Social Care provides free legal advice and information for people with social care needs, helping achieve a better quality of life. We work with communities to increase knowledge of the law and our rights. We highlight the gap left by cuts to Legal Aid and provide advice for those who can’t afford it. With a 98% success rate, our network of lawyers provide access to justice when things go wrong. We collaborate with social services whilst ensuring legal obligations are met. We are working towards a future where social care is adequately funded and we all get the support we need.
We provide rights awareness training to front line managers, and legal advice and support to families and individuals. As well as providing access to justice, our aim is to drive system level change through evidence-led influencing and strategic casework.
This is an exciting time to join ASC. We have a new strategy and are growing quickly including across our senior leadership team. We have more than doubled in size and income since we started operating in April 2020 and we anticipate that this strong growth will continue for the duration of our next strategic period. We are dedicated to the people who need our help, but we also care deeply about our team and we think that work should be an exciting and satisfying place to be.
About the role
This is an essential role reporting directly to the CEO, and part of a newly reinvigorated senior leadership team. You will lead our Legal Directorate to deliver its part in the fulfilment of our organisational strategy and build on the existing strengths of the team to achieve continuous improvement, particularly with regards to policies and working practices.
Our Legal Directorate is central to the charity. By providing direct casework support to clients, expert advice to helplines and advisers, developing the legal content for our tech products, and delivering projects that seek to affect systems change, we work across all functions of the charity and achieve impressive results.
We are seeking a qualified and inclusive leader with substantial experience of the legal sector, together with considerable strategic thinking and operational management experience, including leading, managing and developing high performing teams.
You will lead on the strategic development and operational delivery of ASC’s legal services including our membership model, community work, advice, casework and training. Your attention to detail will ensure services are well resourced and delivered effectively to recognised SQM (or equivalent) quality standards.
You will ensure our systems, policies and processes are effective and fit for purpose. As safeguarding lead, you will manage risk and ensure the safety and security of clients, employees, and other stakeholders who engage with our service.
As part of the Executive team you will be a strategic leader providing a link between the legal service, the Executive team and the Board. You will work with intelligence and creativity to deliver outstanding results in support of our strategic objectives. Ideally you will have experience of working in a legal aid environment, or in community care or other public services law.
How to apply
We hope that, having read this far, you still want to apply!
At Access Social care, we aren’t interested in tokenism. We know that if we are to make the biggest difference for the people that need us the most, we need to get Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and anti-racism right. Part of this is recruiting greater diversity within our Senior Leadership Team. With this in mind, we particularly welcome applications from candidates with experience of the communities we serve, including people with direct experience of the social care system. We welcome applications from marginalised groups, particularly people of colour, trans and non-binary people, older and disabled people.
To apply, please provide a CV, a completed diversity monitoring form and cover letter/statement setting out how you meet the requirements, and your motivation to apply for this role. Your cover letter/statement should be a maximum 2-page document. Please ensure that you address all the essential requirements in the person specification as this will be used for shortlisting. You can find this here: https://www.accesscharity.org.uk/workwith-us
Please ensure that your CV and covering letter do not include your name – use initials only. This helps ensure that we avoid unconscious bias in our shortlisting process. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for applications: Noon on Friday 22nd September 2023
1st stage: 30 minute values-based panel interview with range of staff: Monday 2nd October 2023
2nd stage: 30 minute informal discussion with interim Legal Services Director: Thursday 5th October 2023
3rd stage: Assessment and interview with CEO, a Trustee and Head of Finance: Thursday 12th
and Friday 13th October 2023. Please allow 2 hours for assessment, presentation and