THE ADVOCATE 407
VOL. 78 PART 3 MAY 2020
I am very pleased to hear about the Law Society’s Mental Health Task
Force’s initiatives, especially the aim of creating a diversionary path for
those facing disciplinary proceedings for conduct arising in the context of
mental illness or addiction. I firmly believe that this effort will go a long
way to reducing instead of reinforcing stigma, which the current regime
I am doing my own part to reduce stigma in three ways.
First, I will continue to offer my pro bono consultative services to lawyers
facing discipline who suffer from mental illness or addiction, as much as
my time will allow.
Second, alongside my husband, I will continue to volunteer for LAP.
Third, with my loved ones’ consent, I am sharing my own story publicly.
If sharing my deeply personal story helps just one person, the cost of any
stigma attaching to me, or to my family members, will have been worth it.
Derek tells me there are some lawyers out there who hold me in high
regard. With some humility, I am not sure if that is accurate or not, but I
appreciate that many looking at me from the outside likely assume that I
am not the kind of lawyer who might need LAP’s help.
I am proud to say that I am, indeed, the kind of lawyer who needs LAP’s
And I am so glad I asked for it.
1. My dad consents to waiving his right to anonymity.
In his words, “The truth is the truth.”
2. My husband consents to waiving his right to
anonymity. If you’re curious, my husband’s own story
is the anonymous LAP Notes article, “Return to
Usefulness” from the March 2019 edition of the
The Lawyers Assistance Program is an independent organization of members of the legal community (lawyers, judges
families and support staff). We provide peer support and referral services to help people deal with personal problems,
including alcohol and drug dependence, stress, anxiety and depression. We are volunteers and staff committed to providing
confidential, compassionate and knowledgeable outreach, support and education. We seek to foster collegiality among our
peers and to promote health and well-being in our community. You can reach LAP by telephone at 604-685-2171, toll-free
at 1-888-685-2171 or via the LAP website: <www.lapbc.com>.