The National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) will honor McCarter & English with the 2023 Beacon of Justice Award for demonstrating our commitment to intentional inclusivity and intersectionality through our LGBTQ+ rights, gender equity, and racial equity work.
McCarter’s pro bono practice reflects our decades-long commitment to LGBTQ+ equity. In our humanitarian immigration practice, we represent LGBTQ+ individuals seeking safety in the US from all over the world, particularly people fleeing Jamaica and West Africa. For many of our LGBTQ+ immigration clients, the scope of our representation has extended to assisting our transgender clients in securing identification documents that reflect their true selves.
The firm also launched a pro bono project in 2017 to assist low-income transgender individuals with name and gender marker changes on their legal documentation so that their preferred names match their gender identity. Over time, the unmet need in the community inspired the firm to do more. Recognizing the particular vulnerability to violence of transgender individuals of color, we partnered with Garden State Equality and the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Rahway and created a monthly clinic to reach patients receiving gender-affirming care at the hospital.
McCarter is one of 21 firms that will be recognized at the NLADA Exemplar Awards Gala on June 8.