Trauma Informed Care for the Legal Profession Webinar Series: Episode 4: The Value of Peer Support in the Legal Profession
"Trauma Informed Care for the Legal Profession" is a 6 part webinar series, focused on the core concepts of trauma informed care (Safety, Trustworthiness and Transparency, Peer Support, Collaboration and Mutuality, Empowerment and Cultural, Historical and Gender Issues).
The webinar will include evidence supporting the relevance of this model, and review how trauma is experienced and the impact of trauma on every day life. The science and neuro-biology will be reviewed, with references to studies and articles published in academic journals. Learning objectives are specified to meet the Law Society’s definition of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) as a means to maintain or enhance a lawyer or paralegal’s professional knowledge, skills, attitudes and professionalism.
Each episode includes a one hour presentation and 30 min discussion.
Accreditation by The Law Society of Ontario:
This program contains 7 hours and 30 minutes of Professionalism content and 1 hour and 30 minutes of EDI Professionalism content.
- Healthy Personal and Professional Boundaries
- Effective Conflict Resolution and interpersonal effectiveness
- Self-Compassion, mindfulness & empathy for sustainable collaboration
- Emotional Intelligence: Emotional Regulation, Self Regulation, Empathy, Support
- Sensitivity training for interviewing, assessing, relating to others (clients, staff)
- The 4 R's of trauma informed care
- Identifying risk factors for trauma, (developmental trauma, Big & Little "t" trauma)
- The impact of trauma on the brain (function, structure, development) over the lifespan
- Sensitivity training skills to prevent re-traumatization
- A review of Adverse Childhood Event's Scale and relevance to legal profession
- Empathy and Authenticity for transparency in legal practice
- The neuro-sequential model for stress reduction
- Tools for a strengths based model to promote resiliency and desired outcomes
- EDI: awareness of trauma, neurodiversity, diversity and challenging beliefs/ "othering" with a model for risk and harm reduction and inclusion
- Discussion of power imbalance, organizational structure and traumatic aspects of the legal profession and tools for change
Module Four Will Cover:
- Understanding the value of peer support in trauma-informed care, including the impact of
trauma on others (employees, employers, colleagues, support staff, clients, professionals)
and the role of peer support in promoting well-being and resilience, using a strengths based
- A review of the types of peer support available to legal professionals, the risks of not
engaging in peer support, the benefits of peer mentoring, peer coaching, and peer support
groups on personal and professional success and mental health will be discussed.
- The evidence validating peer support will be discussed, with benefits including increased
confidence, self-awareness, distress tolerance, personal growth, likability, personal success,
enhanced job satisfaction, professional growth and success and improved overall wellbeing. Furthermore, holding skills to support others personally or professionally.
- Trauma-informed approaches to peer support, including understanding the impact of
trauma on others (professionals), the resistance to seeking peer support among
professionals, recognizing the signs of trauma in professionals, skills for addressing
concerns and developing trauma-informed strategies for supporting colleagues.
- The importance of self-compassion in peer support, including red flags for burnout, risk
factors for legal professionals with statistical review and a model for growth involving
sustainable self-care practices, accessing resources and support. A review of cognitive
behavioral therapy, mindfulness based stress reduction, narrative therapy and relationship
tools for vicarious trauma, perfectionism, negativity and stress management.
- Implementing Peer Support: Strategies for developing peer support programs, promoting
participation, and evaluating effectiveness in all sized practices.
- Identifying personal and professional values, developing training associated with values, a review of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with tools for practice.
Eden Dales, MSW, RSW is registered social worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, as well as a member in good standing with Ontario Association of Social Workers. Eden graduated with her Master’s Degree in Social Work in 2001 at Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work. Eden Dales works with Eden Dales Social Work, a community-based social work practice, providing assessments and counselling services for clients and families recovering from trauma across Ontario, in many different languages.