Episode 36 – Bettering the Profession and Improving Access to Justice with Richard Gifford
My guest in this week’s episode is Richard Gifford. He’s a young lawyer in Brisbane working as a Legal Officer at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions Queensland. But when I bumped into him at an event in Brisbane in December, I was struck by his involvement in the non-profit organisation called The Legal Forecast that is moving all over the country. Richard is the Deputy Director and, along with his co-founders, he focuses on thinking about and planning for what is the future of law. We had an insightful conversation about the organisation’s work in innovation, tech, and collaboration.
I really enjoyed hearing his ideas about innovation in law, but we also focused on the world of wellness. As a recent graduate of the College of Law in Queensland, Richard had great comments about what’s happening for young students and lawyers, what we can change what we are doing and what we should be doing.
- The beginnings of The Legal Forecast and how they have grown
- Concerning stats of the high risks of lawyers for being diagnosed with a mental health illness
- Evaluating why mental health seems to affect lawyers more than other professions
- Why wellness is a needed conversation to include when discussing tomorrow’s lawyers
- Thinking about the long game in your career to make sure you don’t burn out
- The difficulties that law students face in gaining work experiences versus financial/academic realities
- Strategies to balance confronting nature of work versus home life
- The humility that develops from working in criminal law
- Why innovation can be prohibited by fear of irrelevancy
- Increasing access to justice in the future years
- The need for the human lawyer that can demonstrate empathy and compassion