ABA Journal

Attorneys with Disabilities

45 ABA Journal Attorneys with Disabilities articles.

How to track and empower diversity and inclusion initiatives in the legal profession

Ari Kaplan recently spoke with Caren Ulrich Stacy, the founder and CEO of the Diversity Lab, a think tank that uses metrics, behavioral science and design thinking to produce initiatives that cultivate diversity and inclusion in legal organizations.

Listen to our 10 favorite podcast episodes of 2022

Looking for a new listen? We've picked our favorite 2022 episodes from each of the ABA Journal's three podcasts. And if this whets your appetite, find more than 10 years of past episodes on our podcast page. You can also check out more legal podcasts from our partners at Legal Talk Network.

Longtime disability rights advocate Scott LaBarre dies at 54

Scott LaBarre, a longtime member of the ABA who advocated for the rights of people with disabilities, died on Dec. 10 after a short battle with cancer. He was 54. "Scott was a top lawyer in the disability law area, but he was so much more," ABA President Deborah Enix-Ross told the ABA Journal. "He was a great leader, inspiring, always cheerful and upbeat and loved by all who had the good fortune to know him. He worked tirelessly on behalf of the ABA, making the association a much better organization. He will truly be missed, but his legacy endures."

Slow Going: Despite diversity gains, some law firm leaders bemoan lack of progress

A series of recent studies have revealed the lack of diversity in law firm partnerships—even after the May 2020 murder of George Floyd spurred the profession to respond to calls for racial justice by launching in-house diversity programs and hiring more chief diversity officers.

Lawyer with autism explores Netflix series ‘Extraordinary Attorney Woo’

I am almost always hesitant to watch stories about autism on TV. I find them extremely stressful because neurotypical creators and actors have a way of consistently “getting it wrong”: focusing on young boys; emphasizing traits in a way that feels like someone is checking them off from a list rather than fleshing out a whole human character; and almost consciously hitting upon every single stereotype.

Lawyer is still entitled to disability benefits for depression linked to law practice, 6th Circuit rules

A former Traverse City, Michigan, personal injury lawyer is entitled to continued monthly payments under his disability insurance policy because of evidence that his recurrent depression makes him unable to work as a trial attorney, a federal appeals court has ruled.

Responses wanted: Motherhood penalty and caregiver bias will be evaluated in new ABA survey

The ABA Commission on Women in the Profession is launching a new survey to assess how the motherhood penalty and other caregiver bias impacts the careers of female lawyers.

Unbroken: A call for psychiatric disability initiatives in the legal profession

So many of us struggle in silence while striving for excellence, when only a helping hand and understanding—not only from family and friends but also from colleagues and those with leading positions in law firms—could guide our way to attain success as humans and as professionals.

11th Circuit rules against lawyer disbarred for failing to comply with mental health requirements of conditional bar admission

A federal appeals court has ruled against a Florida lawyer who challenged her disbarment for failing to comply with mental health requirements of her conditional admission to the bar.

How to best accommodate neurodiverse lawyers and neurodivergent clients

During my first year of law school, I wanted to get involved in disability advocacy with other students and lawyers, primarily as it related to neurodiversity. Before law school, I was pretty entrenched in the autism advocacy scene: I spoke at my first conference when I was 13, wrote a book that was published while I was still in high school and had another book come out while I was in college.

Law firm leaders are still mostly white and male, ABA diversity survey says

White male attorneys continue to constitute the highest percentages of equity partners, non-equity partners and associates at law firms, according to an ABA report released Monday.

Do digital distractions justify law professors’ prohibitions on laptops?

A first-year student who is autistic has an accommodation to use a laptop for taking notes. He also has 14 years of experience teaching in addition to a PhD in education. He was surprised, therefore, when his criminal law professor, who prohibits technology in the classroom, asked him to sit in the back of her class so his computer would not distract others.

ABA’s new CLE policy appears to comply with state ban on diversity ‘quotas,’ Florida Bar says

The ABA Board of Governors on Tuesday revised the association’s diversity policy for continuing legal education programs after the Florida Supreme Court banned course credit in the state for programs with panel “quotas.”

Some law firms are promoting record numbers of associates to partnership

Several law firms have announced their largest new partner classes on record amid a push to reward lawyers and create an incentive for associates to stay.

Has COVID-19 made the workplace more accessible for lawyers with disabilities?

Since March 2020, most law firms and legal organizations have adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic by allowing their employees to work remotely and transition to more flexible hours. For some lawyers with disabilities, teleworking has brought significant benefits, including increased access to their clients and colleagues and to more job opportunities.

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