9th August 2021
Introducing STAMMA Legal, a new network for people who stammer working in the legal profession, or thinking about starting a career in law.
Yet another network has been set up to offer support for stammering in the workplace. Following similar networks within the BBC and the Met Police earlier this year, comes STAMMA Legal.
This is new network for anyone working in the legal profession, and has been set up by Nick Fischer, Bethany Watson and Aonghus Heatley.
Nick says, "Having a stammer can often feel extremely isolating, and that is especially the case in a profession which is often viewed as fluency-focused. For much of my career I wondered whether progressing to senior roles was out of reach for someone with a stammer. I remember spending a lot of time at the start of my training desperately scouring the internet, trying to find anyone else in the legal industry who stammered and who might be able to share their experiences."
Having a stammer should in no way hinder a successful and fulfilling career in law.
Nick adds, "It was only when I eventually met Bethany and Aonghus, who also worked in law, that I realised my experiences were not unique. We decided to set up STAMMA Legal, which welcomes anyone with a stammer working in or thinking about entering the legal industry and at any stage of their career, from qualified solicitors and barristers, to paralegals, trainees and law students."
STAMMA Legal's Aims
Nick says that the network has three main aims:
- "Support Network: to provide a support network for people working in law, and a place to share experiences. The network holds regular support meetings and social events, and provides an opportunity to share experiences, advice or a chance to practise and develop communication skills in an encouraging and supportive environment.
- Awareness: to raise awareness of stammering within the legal industry, by sharing information and engaging with law firms and other stakeholders around best practice for conducting interviews, assessments and working with employees who stammer. It is a sad fact that many people who stammer still experience discrimination at work and during interviews, so we hope that raising awareness of stammering can help to change attitudes at work.
- Myth-busting: To encourage young people who may be dissuaded from pursuing a career in law, perhaps due to a belief that it requires outstanding fluency and public speaking skills, to stick with it. Despite certain unique challenges, having a stammer should in no way hinder a successful and fulfilling career in law. We hope that better visibility around stammering in the legal profession will help to dispel the myth that it is out of reach for many people. Despite certain unique challenges, having a stammer should in no way hinder a successful and fulfilling career in law."
If you work in the legal profession, or are thinking about a career in law, and would like to find out more about the network, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
See the full list of workplace stammering networks, or find out how you can start up a network in your place of work, at our Professional Networks page.