In recognition of World Mental Health Day, Fried Frank is pleased to announce its partnership with Mental Health at Work and Be Mindful. Through Mental Health at Work, the Firm is providing its lawyers and business services professionals ongoing bespoke training workshops to help raise overall awareness surrounding mental health. Sessions include awareness training and guidance for better equipping individuals with an improved understanding of mental health within the workplace and practical skills for how to manage it. Through Be Mindful, a service run by UK charity The Mental Health Foundation, the Firm is offering a course on mindfulness. Mindfulness has been shown to significantly lower levels of perceived stress, depression and anxiety; in one study by the University of Surrey School of Psychology, Be Mindful participants noted a reduction in various symptoms relating to mental health and maintained these at the three and six month follow-ups.
“These partnerships are meant to continue developing a productive and healthy dialogue surrounding mental health and create a safe environment for every individual at the Firm,” said Mark Mifsud, managing partner of the Firm's London office. “We encourage lawyers and business services professionals at all law firms to seek assistance when they need it.”
In addition to its Mental Health at Work and Be Mindful launches, Fried Frank is providing a weeklong series of programs aimed at promoting various other resources available to individuals in the London office. Among these are workshops by Virgin Active on nutrition and the impact of exercise on mental health, and the announcement by healthcare provider Bupa of easier access to a mental health professional without the need for a doctor's referral.
“Fried Frank is committed to providing ongoing support and resources to our lawyers and business services professionals,” said David J. Greenwald, chairman of Fried Frank. “The growing dialogue surrounding mental health issues in the legal industry cannot, and should not, be ignored and our hope is that the week's activities are one of many ways to ensure that the conversation continue.”
As part of Mental Health Awareness Week in the US, the Firm is screening webinars—to be made available to individuals in all offices—specifically focused on conquering fear and anxiety and understanding depression. Firmwide, Fried Frank regularly provides a Work/Life Assistance benefit through its employee assistance providers Unum Lifeworks in London and Corporate Counseling Associates (CCA) in the US, which offers free and confidential services by experienced and licensed clinical professionals on both personal and work-related issues, including emotional well-being, relationship and family problems, alcohol and drug abuse, and stress related to various life events.