Burke Costanza & Carberry LLP (“BCC”) is going on the offensive to combat the negative health affects associated with the practice of law. The firm has instituted a wellness program for the BCC team to help negate the negative side effects of the long hours and stress that can be an everyday part of the practice.
It is no secret that life can be tough for the average person trying to make a living, raise a family, and deal with all of the additional stresses that life throws at us, especially with a struggling economy. But what about the average person with a law degree? While statistics vary in terms of percentages,* the general consensus is that the rates of substance abuse and depression among attorneys are higher when compared to the general population. This troubling phenomenon is finally being addressed at all angles. These efforts fit nicely in the Indiana State Bar Association’s latest health and wellness initiative.
BCC is and always has been focused and committed to providing its clients with the highest quality legal service in a broad range of practice areas. In addition to this, BCC has now also made a commitment to those at the firm to provide the necessary resources in order to supply them with the knowledge to live a happier and healthier life within the confines of practicing law. To ensure success of its wellness program, the program has been governed by both the firm’s Executive Committee and a Wellness Committee comprised of a combination of partners, associates, and support staff. Despite its only having been recently implemented, the program began with a sprint and included a wellness presentation, a ten-week fitness competition focused on reducing body fat percentage along with encouraging better dietary, hydration, and sleep habits, and group participation in surrounding 5k races. The most recent 5k races the firm has participated in include the YMCA Hub Run, the Mudathlon, and the Rotary Ramble.
George Carberry, managing partner, has said, “Our firm’s wellness initiative is another opportunity to improve the health and—certainly, I hope—the lives of our colleagues and staff and their families. It’s open to all employees, whether they are participating in our health insurance plan or not. Like many ‘great movements’ the roll-out of the initiative is modest, but I believe it will thrive as more of us recognize its value over the longer term.”
The response and participation to the wellness program has been great. It is not really surprising considering that America is inundated with so many health problems, including, but not limited to:
- diabetes, the leading cause of kidney failure and nontraumatic lower-limb amputations, affects 8.3% of the U.S. population and 26.9% of those 65 and over;
- obesity affects more than 1/3 of U.S. adults and an estimated $147 billion was spent on obesity related medical costs in 2008; and
- depression, a costly and debilitating condition to those who suffer from the condition, affects an estimated 1 in 10 U.S. adults.**
BCC prides itself on being able to provide a wide range of legal services to its clients. Now, the firm can pride itself on providing the BCC family with the knowledge to combat inactivity with activity in a fun, supportive, and knowledgeable way. Undoubtedly, those in the firm will get healthier and be happier. What a great place to work!
*See Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program’s statistics at http://www.in.gov/judiciary/ijlap/2361.htm.
** Diabetes, obesity, and depression statistics taken from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at http://www.cdc.gov/.