Antoinette Moriarty of the Law Society was recently invited to become a member of a new taskforce on wellbeing set up by the International Bar Association (IBA).
The IBA Wellbeing Taskforce’s objectives are to tackle the growing problem of poor mental health among the world’s lawyers, and to promote policies and working practices that help to improve wellbeing within the legal profession.
The IBA says it is “deeply concerned” about the issue, so it is gathering data, as a starting point, to inform its global response.
Two anonymous and confidential global surveys are now live – one for individual lawyers, the other for law firms and other legal institutions, such as bar associations, law societies, and in-house legal departments.
Moriarty is encouraging all solicitors to have their say now, as the surveys close in a few weeks.
“This is such an important conversation. The Irish legal profession is increasingly cited as leading in this regard – its robust wellbeing programmes begin during the Professional Practice Courses and now extend to all members,” she told Gazette.ie.
“Being part of a global initiative like this will only strengthen wellbeing levels here – and ensure greater relevance to us in whatever the IBA develops.”
The taskforce aims to encourage the growth of wellbeing networks across law firms, bars, and individual practitioners. It will also support a work programme arising from the surveys’ findings, and it plans a number of regional events to discuss the issue.
The Law Society also has its own Wellbeing Hub to provide a range of resources to its members on professional wellbeing, which includes free CPD webinars and advice on how solicitors can help themselves and others.
Law Society members are asked to take less than ten minutes to complete the survey now.