13:53 PM

Mental health amid times of racial unrest

With recent and ongoing news coverage of increased gun violence and the frequent occurrence of officer-involved shootings across the country, it is important, though not necessarily obvious, to consider individual wellness. These incidents, and the conversations that surround them, can impact mental health. This is especially true for lawyers, judges, and law students – along with their families – who can have personal and professional ties to these situations.

In addition to feeling uncertainty, unsettledness, frustration, and other valid emotions during and after these events, members of the legal profession may experience racial moral dilemmas, which pit personal beliefs and feelings against rules of professional conduct and action.

While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to these concerns, reaching out for help is a sign of strength and hope. If Missouri Bar members, or their immediate family, have increased anxiety, depression, or emotional trauma related to these occurrences, there are resources to help.

The Missouri Lawyers’ Assistance Program offers free, confidential, 24/7 access by phone to a licensed clinical social worker and part-time licensed professional counselor. All Missouri Bar members, immediate family members who reside with them, and law students are eligible for the program.

Call 1-800-688-7859 for services. Virtual video counseling is also available. To learn more and access additional resources, visit MoBar.org/MOLAP.