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Gowling WLG offers staff mental health training

Tuesday, October 10, 2017 @ 2:56 PM | By Carolyn Gruske

In an effort to ensure its personnel is better equipped to deal with mental health crises, Gowling WLG has organized mental health first aid (MHFA) training for its Canadian staff.

According to the firm, the training is designed to teach people how to help somebody experiencing a mental health crisis or developing a mental health problem. The assistance is likened to emergency first aid training in that it is administered to a person while waiting for qualified and medically trained experts to arrive and intervene or until the crisis has been resolved.

The training will be conducted by a certified MHFA master trainer and will teach participants to recognize the signs of mental health problems, provide initial help to a person in crisis and guide the person toward the appropriate professional help.

“Research shows that members of the legal profession are at much higher risk of depression, anxiety and substance abuse than individuals in the broader population. In an effort to help change this harsh reality, our diversity & inclusion council is offering MHFA training sessions to a cross-section of individuals in our Canadian offices,” said Peter Lukasiewicz, CEO of Gowling WLG Canada and chair of the firm’s diversity and inclusion council.

As part of its World Mental Health Day activities, Gowling is holding a number of education and meditation sessions. It has also produced videos featuring firm personnel sharing their mental health stories to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.