Agenda 2020 WVJLAP Retreat

Fall 2019

        LapQuest               

The Perfect Addict  

From childhood to adulthood, this attorney suffered with the disease of addiction. With the implementation of a 12-step program and admitting that he was powerless over his substance abuse issue, he was able to develop a better way of living.  He stayed focused, worked hard, and asked for a second chance from other legal professionals. Today this attorney is successful with his employment, and most importantly is also living happy joyous and free.

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ABA Anti-Stigma Campaign

Stigma, shame, and fear. These obstacles frequently play a major role in an individual’s decision not to seek help when suffering from mental health and substance use disorders. Too often, lawyers, judges, and law students find themselves wrestling privately with frustration and despair as an addiction or mental health problem dominates their life and threatens their career.  To raise awareness about the nature of addiction and mental health distress in our profession and to challenge the biases and stigma that surround those problems, the ABA’s Commission on Lawyers Assistance Programs (CoLAP) created a profession-wide anti-stigma campaign that will feature a series of videos highlighting the personal recovery stories of lawyers, judges, and law students who have overcome these issues. These videos send the message that recovery from addiction and mental health problems is entirely possible for legal professionals. Our goal is to ensure that fewer of our colleagues face these challenges alone.

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Emotional Sobriety by Bill Wilson

Bill Wilson, co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous wrote about emotional sobriety in a letter he sent to a depressed friend in 1956.  This letter was eventually published in The Grapevine in 1958 titled “Emotional Sobriety: The Next Frontier.”

Read Letter

 

Law Firm/Organization Impairment Policy

In 2019, the Policy Committee of the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP) and the ABA Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession developed this template to provide suggested guidelines to legal employers for responding to an employee who is experiencing impairment due to a substance use disorder, mental health disorder or cognitive impairment.

Read Policy

 

 

 

 

 

Agenda 2020 WVJLAP Retreat

Summer 2019

 

Crossing Over

Successful in every respect, this lawyer managed his drinking for years.  When the imaginary line was crossed and his drinking became unmanageable, he sought help through WVJLAP before facing major consequences.  The unexpected results of his recovery became a priceless gift. Read More

Only a Cultural Shift Can Improve Substance Abuse and Mental Health Problems in the Legal Profession

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Resilience in the Practice of Law

I grew up in a perfect family. I was trained to be a perfect lawyer. As a young attorney, I worked with perfect people in a perfectionist culture. Mistakes were not tolerated. Showing
emotions was unheard of. And seeking support was a sign of weakness. After years of trying to live up to an unattainable “perfect me,” the strain began to take a toll on my physical and
mental health. This was the turning point. I needed to make a change, so I began a new journey to improved well-being. A shift within me and events that followed led to profound
improvements in my job satisfaction, performance, and personal health. Read Article

New Well-Being Template for Legal Employers

The ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP) and the ABA Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession developed this template to provide suggested guidelines to legal employers for responding to an employee who is experiencing impairment due to a substance use disorder, mental health disorder or cognitive impairment. Read Report

 You’re in a pickle.  Can a lawyer assistance program help?

Bree Buchanan discusses how lawyer assistance programs work, and how a person can reach out for assistance. Listen to Podcast