On Wednesday afternoon, attorneys headed to the BBA’s Claflin Center for a program called “Representing Veterans with Post-Traumatic Stress: What Everyday Attorneys Need to Know.” Just as the title suggests, the program educated attorneys about the challenges and misconceptions that arise when serving clients with PTS.
The panel for this program included attorneys who regularly counsel veterans, health care professionals, as well as individuals that have served in significant combat operations. The speakers included Kevin Casey (VA New England Healthcare), Tim McLaughlin (Holland & Knight), Jack Regan (WilmerHale), Ann Stewart (the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program), Travis Weiner, and moderator Bill Sinnott (the Corporation Counsel, City of Boston). These panelists shared gripping personal stories and experiences and provided perspective into many of stressful factors veterans face post-deployment.
Beyond the Billable checked in with Tim after attending this program to see what he hopes attendees learned. Here’s what he had to say:
“First, I hope the panel members were able to provide some general insight into the realities of military service, which is very different from its portrayal in the media. Second, I hope we were able to provide some specific insights into what I would characterize as the normal and lifelong effects of military service and combat, which can manifest itself in many forms, including post-traumatic stress. However, and this is important both from a veteran’s point of view and for those attorneys who may represent veterans in the future; speaking from first-hand experience, post-traumatic stress is not a disorder. It is simply what comes next. It would be a disorder if I was unaffected. And finally, I hope we were able to share some of the many, many resources that are available to our veterans in and around Boston.”
This program is a part of the Boston Bar Association’s ongoing efforts to provide crucial legal assistance to military personnel, veterans, and their families. Along with this program, the BBA’s Military Legal Help Line through the Lawyer Referral Service, and participation in Yellow Ribbon events, are just some of the ways the BBA commits to providing veteran’s and their families the access to legal assistance that they need and deserve.
If you are an attorney and would like to find out about what you can do to help veterans and their families, check out our Veteran’s Initiative webpage here.