The Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program, Inc. (JLAP) has published its Annual Report for fiscal year 2015-2016. You can review the entire report here: JLAP Annual Report 2015-2016
The most exciting achievement in the last year is that the majority of JLAP cases in 2015-16 involved persons reaching out to JLAP voluntarily and confidentially. In many cases they obtained completely discrete help from JLAP before there was any harm to their career, the profession, or the public. This reflects JLAP’s recent campaigns to raise awareness about JLAP’s totally confidential help.
As to program improvements, the new JLAP now offers a wide array of mental health assistance and is now a comprehensive professionals’ program that offers help with all types of mental health issues, not just alcohol and drug issues.
1) Restructuring JLAP’s governance;
2) Amending La. R.S. 37:221 to include judges programing and also expand JLAP’s clinical scope to include all mental health issues;
3) Recruiting and developing a full-time Professional Clinical Staff;
4) The development of Professional Intervention Services;
5) A new JLAP Diversion Track available to judges involved in disciplinary matters;
6) The creation of a comprehensive JLAP website;
7) A new JLAP Exhibit and Mediation Training classes at the LSBA’s Summer School;
8) New law school outreach services including wellness presentations and “JLAP Office Hours” wherein a JLAP Clinician periodically travels to law schools and offers free, confidential mental health services onsite to law students thereby greatly increasing their access to mental health support;
9) Expansion of CLE presentation topics to provide education on mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and perfectionism, and compassion fatigue;
10) New protocol for assisting those who contact JLAP confidentially about a mental health issues;
11) In-house library of available professionals’-level publications that address various mental health issues that lawyers and judges predominantly face, with these materials provided based upon the individual’s needs;
12) Improvement of JLAP’s formal monitoring services resulting in a no-relapse and fitness-to-practice efficacy rate of 90% or better.
With many challenges complete, JLAP is now offering comprehensive services that will help save more lives and careers than ever before.
And this mission has never been more important to the health of the legal profession. As discussed in the JLAP Annual Report, a recent study (included as an attachment to the Annual Report) reveals stunning levels of substance use disorders and other mental health issues such as depression in the legal profession. JLAP’s services are now more important than ever, and as the Annual Report demonstrates, JLAP is now meeting the demand to provide effective and reliable clinical support to the profession on all levels.