Providing support for anxiety

3rd Feb 2021

LawCare provided emotional support to some 1,000 legal professionals in the past year, with anxiety accounting for a rise in calls to the support service.

LawCare has released figures for 2020 showing a 9% rise in the number of legal professionals contacting them for emotional support. In total, 738 professionals reached out to LawCare to seek help for their mental wellbeing.

The charity, which specialises in supporting those in the legal profession, received 964 calls, webchats and emails to its support service last year.

There was a noticeable increase in the number of people reporting anxiety – from 45 people in 2019, to 111 last year.

Women and younger people were more likely to contact the service. 69% of contacts were made by women and half of all people seeking help were either trainees or pupils.

The COVID-19 pandemic impacted on the figures. A third of all calls referenced the pandemic. LawCare also heard from professionals who were being asked to work while furloughed.

The biggest issues relating to COVID were:

  • Worsening of existing mental health issues (13%)
  • Not being permitted to work from home (12%)
  • Struggling to adapt to working from home due to poor supervision, procedures, or provision of equipment (11%)
  • Feeling isolated (11%)
  • Being overloaded with work, typically because colleagues had been furloughed (9%)

Elizabeth Rimmer, CEO of LawCare, said, “Our support service continues to grow and help more people year on year. 2020 was a challenging year for most and we are not surprised that anxiety increased at a time of great worry and uncertainty.

"In addition, our website traffic increased by 50% and we allocated more peer supporters and funded more counselling sessions last year than ever before.  We expect demand to continue to grow in 2021 as legal professionals continue to navigate the challenges presented by COVID-19.”

During these difficult times, it is important to be aware of the help available and where it can be found.

LawCare is an independent charity offering emotional support, information and training to the legal community in the UK. They aim to promote good mental health and wellbeing in legal workplaces.

Anyone working in the legal industry, including support staff, can contact LawCare for free, confidential, emotional support:

Telephone 0800 279 6888

Email [email protected]rg.uk

Website www.lawcare.org.uk

For further information on LawCare’s 2020 statistics and to read its full report, please click here.