History

LAPBC was born out of a rich tradition of lawyers helping lawyers and the need for a formal, organized approach to helping distressed members as the size of the bar in British Columbia steadily increased.

LAPBC began informally in 1989 with three lawyers starting an Alcoholic Anonymous meeting for lawyers. From there, Art Vertlieb, Dr. Ray Baker and Russ Mackay spearhead efforts to develop a system to help distressed lawyers and lobby the Law Society for funding and support. In 1991, the first workshop was held to train volunteers in addictions and interventions techniques and by 1992, LAPBC had its own office and started offering a wide variety of educational, informational and support programs, having realized that lawyers were struggling with difficulties beyond addictions. By 1996, referrals for assistance grew to the point of hiring the program’s first full-time director, Derek LaCroix and LAPBC was offering programs across BC. In 2000, LAPBC began the tradition of hosting an annual retreat for volunteer training which continues to this day. Starting in 2001, LAPBC began hiring additional administrative staff and counselors to handle the growing number of requests and referrals for assistance around the province.

The number of requests and referrals for assistance that LAPBC receives continues to grow annually. Assistance is available to all legal professionals (lawyers, judges, law students, paralegals, other law firm staff and their immediate family members) on a wide range of issues (addictions, stress, anxiety, depression, career dissatisfaction and transitions, issues with aging and retirement, family and marital issues, physical illnesses and injuries).

Contact us by phone at 604.685.2171 or 1.888.865.2171 or email at (info@lapbc.com) info (at) lapbc (dot) com if you or someone you know needs assistance – we’re available 24 hours/day, 7 days/week.