Mental Health and the Law Panel Discussion

5.15 pm for 5.30 pm, Tuesday 21 March 2017
Common Room, University House
Australian National University

A great deal is spoken and written about the relationship between the legal profession and poor mental health. High pressure, client demands and the intellectual intensity of the job are often cited as major causes of stress, anxiety and in the most acute cases, suicide, among lawyers.

Traditionally, the legal community has fixed its gaze on managing poor mental health through awareness raising activities to destigmatise mental health. The panel will discuss the efficacy of such approaches and consider alternative approaches, including structural change.

The members of the panel are leading the charge when it comes to addressing poor mental health in the legal profession by bringing about structural change in their own practices. These practitioners are drawn from international and Australian law firms.

John Canning is a Partner in the Sydney office of King & Wood Mallesons and has spoken openly about his experience with bipolar disorder and the impact of positive leadership and cultural change.

Alena Titterton is a Partner in the Sydney office of Clyde & Co and has implemented structural change in her own practice to help realise improved mental health outcomes among lawyers and legal support staff.

Motus Legal Director, Craig Yeung, set up a non-traditional law firm to support a mentally healthy workplace and is on the board of LifeBACK, an organisation that designs tools to help improve men’s mental health.

It is anticipated an additional panel member will provide insight into the relevant policy landscape.

The panel discussion will be held at 5.30 pm on Tuesday 21 March 2017 at University House, Australian National University. Registration opens at 5.15 pm and refreshments will be served after the event. Participants should RSVP by COB Thursday 16 March 2017 by completing an online formParticipants may also RSVP by phone (02 6126 4500) or email (

Please contact Will Brown, Associate Consultant, or Jeremy Boland, Principal Consultant, on 02 6126 4500 if you have any questions.