In 2021 the Massachusetts Bar Association presented Todd & Weld with the Law Firm Pro Bono Award recognizing the firm’s long-standing commitment to providing significant pro bono legal representation.
Headed by Founding Partner Howard M. Cooper, the firm’s pro bono practice has supported the ACLU of Massachusetts over many years in numerous consequential pro bono cases involving free speech, civil rights, and access to justice. The firm has provided pro bono legal counsel to numerous non-profit organizations including the South Middlesex Opportunity Council, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, the Islamic Society of Greater Worcester, the City of Newton Public School Committee, and the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys.
Our attorneys handle pro bono matters for individuals in a wide variety of areas, including criminal defense and civil rights matters. Todd & Weld Family Law attorneys routinely provide legal assistance to children through the Attorneys Representing Children (ARC) program. The Norfolk County Attorneys Representing Children ARC Program honored our attorneys for their participation in the Norfolk County program.
Noteworthy recent pro bono cases Todd & Weld has handled or is handling include:
- The firm represents children separated from their parents at the border in a first-of-its-kind damages putative class action against current and former government officials seeking compensation for the children and the establishment of a fund for ongoing mental health treatment and monitoring.
- The firm on behalf of several organizations, including ACLU of Massachusetts (ACLUM), filed an amicus brief in support of the City of Newton School Committee and other school officials and teachers pursuing the dismissal of a complaint that seeks to censor the Newton High School curriculum in the offered comparative religion and world history courses. The case raises fundamental First Amendment issues.
- The firm filed an amicus brief on behalf of the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in support of Massachusetts District Court Judge Shelley Richmond Joseph in her effort to dismiss a federal prosecution against her for alleged obstruction of justice related to an undocumented immigrant who appeared in her courtroom on drug charges while a federal immigration agent was seeking to detain him. The case raised important First Amendment right to petition/access to court issues.
- The firm filed an amicus brief on behalf of the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in a case before the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court concerning the fundamental right to liberty and the setting of cash bail.
- The firm and the ACLUM obtained a ruling from the Middlesex Superior Court that the Natick School Committee's policy governing the public speaking portion of its meetings violated the free speech provisions of the Massachusetts Constitution. The parties then reached a settlement that addressed the free speech violations raised in the lawsuit.
- The firm worked with a large municipality in the development of safe injection sites.