Lawyers e-Journal

Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012
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MBA plugs second video in public awareness campaign

Next YouTube post emphasizes courts’ adaptations to funding crisis

The Massachusetts Bar Association has posted its second video as part of its public awareness campaign on the effects of underfunded courts. The second video in the series concentrates on the judicial system's response to the underfunding crisis.

Video subjects -- representatives from the bench, bar and academia -- shed light on the reality for the 42,000 Massachusetts citizens who seek justice in the commonwealth's more than 100 courthouses each day.

The subjects' collective insight paints a picture of the mounting burdens on the system's shrinking resources, including its workforce.

"We are really asking our people to do more and more with fewer and fewer resources," Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland said in the video.

MBA President Richard P. Campbell also spoke to the escalating strains on court personnel. "It's a huge problem for us," he said.

"We have not hired one single person," Probate and Family Court Chief Justice Paula M. Carey added, referencing the court's hiring freeze since 2008.

The Hon. Anthony Nesi, also of the Probate and Family Court, commented on the lack of clerks and weeks-worth of delays in processing judicial decisions. He explains that the lack of support services has significantly slowed down the process for citizens and impacts the service that they receive.

"People are waiting for their decision. Their lives are in limbo. And, we may have decided the case, but no one knows it," Nesi said.  

Maurice Cunningham, PhD, JD, chairman, Department of Political Science, UMass Boston, also featured in the video, said, "There is a point where you just can't tighten your belt any longer. We're at it right now."

View the video below or click here.

Court Funding Video 2

MBA members are asked to continue to share the MBA videos and the link to online resources with colleagues and acquaintances. All can serve as resources when members of the legal community and citizens alike reach out to legislators on this important issue.

Since its first YouTube video post, statewide billboard launch and online resources provided last week, the MBA's public awareness campaign has garnered significant media coverage, including pieces on/in boston.com; State House News Service; MassINC's CommonWealth magazine; WBUR-FM; the American Bar Association's ABAJournal; Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly's blog, The Docket; Banker & Tradesman; and Worcester's Telegram & Gazette.

In addition, news of the campaign has received considerable attention on social media, especially Twitter. Follow @massbar for the latest tweets on the topic or to join the conversation. In addition to MBA's social media platforms, MBA's e-Journal and Massachusetts Lawyers Journal will contain campaign updates.

©2014 Massachusetts Bar Association