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YLS Nondiscrimination Policy
Instructions for Confirming Organization Compliance
The Law School’s nondiscrimination policy (the “Policy”) applies to Career Development Office services, post-graduate fellowships funded by the Law School†, summer internships funded through Summer Public Interest Funding (SPIF) or Kirby Simon Fellowships, and the Career Options Assistance Program (COAP). (The policy will be applied to COAP beginning with the Class of 2024; these instructions will be updated at an appropriate time to guide compliance with respect to COAP.) Students and graduates who make use of any of these forms of financial support must confirm that the organization at which they are pursuing employment certifies compliance with the Policy. To do so, follow the steps set forth below.
Determine whether an organization has already certified compliance with the Policy by logging into CMS and following these steps:
- Select “Employers – All” on the left side bar.
- Click “More Filters.”
- In the Nondiscrimination Policy Certification field, select “yes” and hit search.
- All organizations on this filtered list have certified compliance with the Policy.
All information about organization certification is confidential and may not be shared outside of the Law School.
If the organization at which you are pursuing employment appears on the filtered list in CMS, you may check the appropriate box on the form for the funding program you are utilizing indicating the organization’s compliance. You have then completed your obligation.
Some organizations have complex structures. Students are responsible for carefully reviewing the listed organizations and ensuring that the organization or entity at which you are pursing employment is listed. Below are some general guidelines:
- Nonprofits with offices, branches, programs, or units. You may be considering working for a specific office, branch, program, or unit within a larger organization. As long as any office, branch, program, or unit, or the organization as a whole, has certified compliance, you may assume that the certification applies to all offices, branches, programs, and units of the organization. For example, the ABA and all of its components; Legal Services NYC and all of its components; and the national ACLU and all of its components.
- Nonprofits with affiliates. A handful of organizations have an affiliate structure, where related organizations are separate entities. In that case, you cannot assume that a certification by one entity applies to others. For example, each ACLU state affiliate is a separate entity; even ACLU affiliates within a state are separate entities (e.g., ACLU of Northern California and ACLU of Southern California). Accordingly, a certification by one affiliate, or by ACLU national, does not apply to other ACLU affiliates. Again, you are responsible for researching the organizational structure of the employer you are considering.
- Federal government. If you are working for a federal executive agency, the agency at which you are working must certify compliance. With respect to the federal Department of Justice, if you are working for main DOJ or one of its components, and if any part of main DOJ or any one of its components has certified compliance, you may assume that the certification applies to your prospective employment. However, if you are working for an individual U.S. Attorney’s Office, the specific office must certify compliance.
- State government. If you are working for a state executive agency, the agency at which you are working must certify compliance. With respect to a state’s Attorney General’s Office or Department of Justice, if you are working for the main office or one of its divisions, bureaus, units, or programs, and if any part of the main office or any one of its divisions, bureaus, units, or programs has certified compliance, you may assume that the certification applies to your prospective employment.
- Intergovernmental organizations. If you are working for an intergovernmental organization, such as the United Nations or the World Bank, the specific organ, program, or branch at which you are working must certify compliance.
If, after checking CMS, you have a question about whether an organization is listed, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This email should provide the exact name and location of the organization, a description of your efforts to determine whether it is on the list of organizations that have certified, and your specific question.
If an organization is not listed, you must reach out to your contact person at the organization and ask them to complete a certification form. A sample email is attached as Appendix A. Generally, if you are seeking funding for a summer internship you should request that the organization certify compliance after you have secured a position. For post-graduate fellowships, you should discuss the certification process as part of securing a host organization.
The organization submits the form directly to the Law School, and you need not be involved after supplying the organization with the form. Once an organization submits the form, the organization will appear in CMS as having certified. At that point, you can check the appropriate box on the form for the funding program you are utilizing, indicating the organization’s compliance. You have then completed your obligation.
If, after requesting that an organization complete a certification form, the organization is (i) unwilling to certify compliance with the Policy, (ii) unresponsive to your request, or (iii) has questions about the Policy that you are unable to answer, you must email email@example.com, unless you are applying for Bernstein, Robina, or Kirby Simon Fellowships, in which case you must email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In your email, you must provide all of the following information:
- The type of YLS funding you seek (post-graduate fellowship funded by YLS, SPIF or Kirby Simon Fellowship, or COAP);
- The name of the organization;
- The position you are seeking with that organization and the status of your search (e.g., offer in hand, interview process in progress);
- A detailed description of all efforts you have made to receive certification of compliance, including supporting documentation (e.g., all relevant emails with the organization);
- Any information you have about the reason(s) why the organization has not certified compliance, including any relevant documentation; and
- Any publicly available information you have been able to find from the organization’s website or elsewhere about any nondiscrimination policy the organization currently has in effect or any statement about compliance with applicable legal nondiscrimination mandates.
Upon receipt of this information, you will be contacted about next steps by a CDO or Financial Aid staff member (or, in the case of Bernstein, Robina, or Kirby Simon Fellowships, a representative of the Schell Center), or by a member of the Nondiscrimination Policy Committee.
† Non-YLS students and non-YLS graduates are not authorized to access Law School information on certification by specific organizations. Accordingly, non-YLS students and non-YLS graduates who are applying for post-graduate fellowships funded by the Law School should contact the fellowship administrator for instructions regarding organization certification.
Appendix A — Sample Email to Organization
[I have recently secured an employment opportunity with your organization.] OR [I am very interested in exploring opportunities with your organization post-graduation.] I am extremely enthusiastic about this [potential] opportunity and the possibility of working at [ORGANIZATION NAME].
Yale Law School provides generous financial support to [students OR graduates] in the form of [post-graduate fellowships OR Summer Public Interest Fellowships]. However, in order to receive this financial support, [students OR graduates] must work at an organization that certifies compliance with the Law School’s nondiscrimination policy.
The Law School’s records indicate that you have not yet had the opportunity to certify your compliance. Certification requires you to submit a very brief certification form.
I would be grateful if you are able to take a few minutes to submit the certification and confirm with me that you have completed this step so that I can move forward with securing funding.
All the best,