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Contact: Michael Avitzur
Director of Government Relations

Boston Bar Joins in Support of Striking Down DOMA

Underscoring its long-standing support for marriage equality, the Boston Bar Association today announced its role as a signatory in amicus briefs in two cases now before the Supreme Court of the United States: United States v. Windsor and Hollingsworth v. Perry. In both instances the BBA has joined a coalition of bar associations and civil and human rights groups, and public interest and legal services organizations.

While dozens of amicus briefs have been filed in both cases, each offers its own perspective. In the case of the BBA, the briefs it signed urge the Court to "hold that sexual orientation classifications are subject to heightened scrutiny."
In both briefs, the amici urge the Court to presume the "unequal treatment is based on deep-seated prejudice or baseless stereotypes and requires a more searching review of the actual grounds for the discrimination to prevent governments from justifying it with post hoc rationales."

The briefs were drafted on behalf of the coalition by Jonathan S. Franklin of Fulbright & Jaworski's office in Washington, D.C.

The Boston Bar Association's support for marriage equality dates back to 2002 when it filed an amicus brief in Goodridge, the Massachusetts case which resulted in the MA Supreme Judicial Court overturning the prohibition against same sex marriage in the Bay State.

The Boston Bar Association traces its origins to meetings convened by John Adams, who provided pro bono representation to the British soldiers prosecuted for the Boston Massacre and went on to become the nation’s second president. Its mission is to advance the highest standards of excellence for the legal profession, facilitate access to justice, serve the community at large and promote diversity and inclusion.