Arnold & Porter Named to Bloomberg Law’s Inaugural “Pro Bono Innovators” List
Arnold & Porter recently was named to Bloomberg Law’s inaugural “Pro Bono Innovators” List, which highlights “legal leaders” for their work in handling pro bono issues across the country and world. This year, 14 law firms and one non-profit organization were included in the 2022 list.
Arnold & Porter was recognized for its work creating a national program offering pro bono assistance to restaurant workers who lost jobs or had hours reduced following business closures in the wake of COVID-19 and subsequently expanding the program to assist workers in numerous additional industries in response to evolving pandemic-related needs. The firm also was recognized for its collaboration with the National Association of the Deaf to compel the Trump administration and White House to provide American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters during broadcasts of their coronavirus press conferences to make them more accessible to deaf and hard of hearing people.
The impact of the pro bono unemployment benefits program has been far reaching, assisting over 800 individuals around the country, Arnold & Porter partners Dan Cantor, Ian Hoffman, and counsel Rebecca Gordon told Bloomberg Law. “While its initial focus was on unemployed restaurant workers, due to demand we quickly expanded to workers in all industries. We received countless messages from individuals stating that they were only able to pay their rent or feed their children because of our help,” they said.
“The National Association of the Deaf lawsuit led to historic change at the White House. A few weeks after the court issued its ruling, a presidential press briefing was interpreted live in ASL for the first time. When the Biden administration took over a few months later, the White House began providing ASL interpreters for all press briefings, not just about Covid-19. The White House then hired a full-time team of interpreters, including a hearing and deaf interpreter. For tens of thousands of deaf Americans, these changes have unlocked a new level of accessibility to their government,” they said.
Arnold & Porter’s pro bono work has been widely recognized by the legal community. The firm was recently named a “Pro Bono Leader” by the DC Circuit Pro Bono Standing Committee, the American Immigration Council honored Arnold & Porter with its American Heritage Award for the firm’s pro bono work advancing immigration rights, and the firm was recognized by Washington Council of Lawyers for its commitment to pro bono work with its 2021 Law Firm Award.