Initiatives within Courts
Reflective Practice: Supporting Judicial Resilience
County Court of Victoria
In October 2014, the County Court of Victoria created the ‘Supporting Judicial Resilience Program’ as a six month pilot to support the wellbeing of County Court judges, especially in terms of judges exposure to vicarious trauma. Following an independent evaluation, the program is now available to all County Court judges. In this article, published in the Law Institute Journal (September, 2015), Judge Felicity Hampel explains the rationale for the program and the process of establishing and piloting the idea.
This webpage will be continuously updated with new initiatives. To include information about other court-led programs or initiatives to support judicial wellbeing, email the Judicial Wellbeing Project Advisor
Information to Support Courts in Developing Programs
Workplace prevention of mental health problems: Guidelines for organisations
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne
These comprehensive guidelines on organisation strategies for preventing occupational stress and mental illness, are based on a systematic analysis of the consensus of a panel of experts. It provides an evidence-based template approach to developing a comprehensive mental health and wellbeing strategy within organisations.
TJMF Psychological Wellbeing: Best Practice Guidelines for the Legal Profession
Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation (2014)
Based on similar guidelines prepared for the Canadian profession, TJMF’s Guidelines identify and delineate 13 evidence-based factors which indicate the psychological health of a legal workplace, and set out how each of these may be implemented at varying levels, from basic to best practice, within a organisation. There are currently more than 80 signatories to the Guidelines around the country, including all major law firms and law schools.
Judicial College of Victoria
Recent Wellbeing Programs
"Judicial Peer Support", June 2019
In June, the College ran its two-day Judicial Peer Support program. This intensive program is designed to give participants the information and skills necessary to identify and support a colleague in distress. It recognises the deeply collegiate nature of the judiciary and that a peer is often the first port of call in a difficult situation. Judicial officers from the Federal jurisdictions, an overseas delegates from Singapore, Korea and the United Kingdom, also attended the program.
“Judicial Wellbeing: The Self and the System”, August 2017
This highly interactive, solution-focused program built on the inaugural judicial wellbeing program held in 2015.
It explored not only the strategies individual judicial officers can implement to manage the pressures of the role, but also the structural and systemic changes courts could implement to minimise the judiciary’s exposure to stress and vicarious trauma.
Past judicial wellbeing programs
Note: The following resources are only available to judicial officers via JOIN (a secure intranet for Victorian judicial officers)
- 2016 – Collegial Leadership
- 2015 – Balancing the Demands of Judicial Life
- 2014 – Judicial Symposium
- 2014 – Stress, Trauma & the Judicial Role
- 2012 – Decision Making
- 2012 – Enriching the Role and Career of Longer Serving Judicial Officers
- 2012 – Judicial Mentoring
- 2012 – The Art of Sustained Attention: Mindfulness Practices for Judicial Officers
- 2009 – Stress and the Judiciary