Work-related factors have a different impact on high rates of stress, unsafe alcohol use and attrition among avocados by gender, according to a study published on May 12, 2021 in the open access journal. PLOS ONE by Justin Anker of the University of Minnesota School of Medicine and Patrick Krill of Krill Strategies LLC, USA.
Recent national reports indicate that lawyers suffer from particularly high rates of depression, anxiety and substance abuse, as well as high rates of attrition, especially among women. In this study, Anker and Krill interviewed members of the California Lawyers Association and the DC Bar to learn more about work-related factors that can predict stress (due to its links to depression and anxiety as a cause and consequence), alcohol misuse and attrition among lawyers.
2,863 men and women currently working in law responded to the survey (which was randomly sent to 80,000 people in participating bars), with women making up about 51% of the final sample. Overall, the results showed that men and women differ in both the prevalence of these problems (stress, substance abuse and attrition) as well as the degree to which workplace factors contributed to the problems. .
67 percent of the sample reported working more than 40 hours per week, and almost 25 percent reported working more than 51 hours per week on average. Young lawyers were 2-4 times more likely than their older colleagues to report moderate or high stress. High work over-engagement was associated with stress for both men and women, but this relationship was stronger for women. 30 percent of respondents tested positive for high-risk alcohol use (although only 2 percent reported being diagnosed with alcohol use disorder), and a significantly higher proportion of women than men engaged in risky drinking (56 percent versus 46 percent) and high-risk / unsafe alcohol use (34 percent versus 25 percent). Finally, more women than men (24% vs. 17%) were considering leaving law because of mental health issues, burnout or stress – and the predictors of this response differed between genders. Women with a high score for work-family conflict were 4.5 times more likely to quit or consider quitting law; men reporting high over-commitment to work were more than twice as likely to consider leaving. Interestingly, men who scored high on the Perceived Likelihood of Promotion scale were 2.5 times less likely to consider quitting – but there was no association between these two items for women.
The authors note that their investigation took place during the COVID-19 pandemic – although they made an effort to assess how COVID-19 might have impacted their respondents in the investigation as well as their results in Generally, there are still unrecorded effects of the current pandemic. . They also note that their survey did not ask about respondents’ help-seeking; however, the results still clearly indicate that mental health issues, alcohol abuse and gender disparities are significant issues in the legal profession.
Krill adds: “These illuminating findings reveal disturbing levels of distress within the legal profession, especially for women, but they also provide vitally important markers on the path to improvement. We hope the profession will follow suit. now this way. “
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