NEW YORK - Reed Smith today announced the launch of a firmwide Mental Health Task Force that will advise the firm on policies and practices, educational programming, services, resources, and awareness raising around issues of mental well-being. The task force is an initiative of LEADRS, or Looking for Excellence and Advancement of Persons with Disabilities at Reed Smith, a business inclusion group within the firm’s global diversity initiative.

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Kimberly Gold, a partner in the firm’s New York office, is the Mental Health Task Force’s co-founder and inaugural chair.

“The mission of this task force is to ensure that our lawyers and professional staff have access to help whenever they or their family members experience or are at risk of experiencing mental health or substance use issues. We will also challenge the well-documented stigma surrounding these issues and cultivate a workplace culture that promotes psychological wellness and positive help-seeking behaviors,” Gold said. “We are collaborating with other key members of Reed Smith’s Diversity & Inclusion team to develop a comprehensive strategy for assessing and addressing these outcomes across our global platform.”

According to Gold, the task force emerged from discussions within LEADRS about how to further support members of Reed Smith’s workforce facing mental health challenges. From the beginning, the initiative was encouraged by the firm’s senior management, lawyers, and professional staff members.