Suicide is a leading cause of death among lawyers. In fact, 11% of lawyers have had suicidal thoughts at some point in their careers.
In recognition of these facts, and in honor of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, the State Bar of Texas wants all Texas lawyers to be aware of the life-saving resources available to them. If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please call 911 for immediate help or call 988 to reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
In addition, the Texas Lawyers’ Assistance Program, or TLAP, and TexasBarCLE are offering Just Ask: How We Must Stop Minding Our Own Business in the Legal World, a complimentary, one-hour online CLE on depression and suicide prevention. Register through the TexasBarCLE website here.
The stresses of practicing law, the lack of time for self-care, and the lack of knowledge about what to do when we need help make this one-hour ethics CLE program essential for all lawyers. The program covers the signs and symptoms of depression, what to do about them, supportive resources and strategies, what to do if you or a colleague is suicidal, and how it is time to end the stigma of needing help.
I encourage you to visit tlaphelps.org/suicide-prevention for additional suicide prevention resources, including videos and articles curated by the professionals at TLAP.
And remember, TLAP provides 24/7 confidential help for Texas lawyers, judges, and law students with substance use and mental health issues. Call or text 800-343-8527 (TLAP) to get confidential help for yourself or a colleague. Learn more at tlaphelps.org or by following TLAP on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
I care about you and your good health. You are an important member of our legal community, and it is essential that you take care of your health. Make yourself a priority.
Laura Gibson, managing partner of the Houston office of Dentons, is the 2022-2023 president of the State Bar of Texas.