Tag-Archive for » Health «

One of our fellow paralegals, Chere Estrin, recently posted an interesting article on your weight and how it could be sabotaging your career in the legal field.  It is a great article (which you can read in its entirety here) and I am sure that most of us (at least those of us who carry some extra pounds) have wondered about when we have applied for a job, interviewed and then were not hired, if it was because of our weight that lost us the job.

As quoted in Chere’s article:

  • “Fat, lazy and unproductive” might be some of the stereotypes that ring true to employers who reject an obese applicant despite a stellar resume. Published last month in the International Journal of Obesity, a new study examined the role anti-fat prejudice plays in workplace hiring practices.  The study results showed that obese women received more negative responses on leadership potential, predicted success, likelihood to select, salary, total employment rating and rank order of preference relative to other candidates.
  • Fat is one of the last bastions of discrimination with very little done to curb prejudice or  intolerance.  Being overweight does not mean a person is unmotivated or lazy.  Chances are if you made it into in a law firm environment, you are smart, good at your job and ambitious.  In fact, because of excess weight, people may even be more driven than others.

While I am not looking for a new job, I am very happy where I am, thank you very much, I am giving this article some great thought.  I am lucky to work for employers who did not discriminate when hiring me, despite my extra pounds.  I wonder how some of you feel about this article and if you have felt, or have been told outright, that you were not hired/promoted because of your weight.  Please feel free to share your thoughts on this.

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When you read the title, I bet you thought why would I want to know about a woman who gave away her children?  The woman in question, 45 year old legal secretary Jill Hawkins, has been a surrogate mother for the last 19 years, giving birth to 8 children, only one using an implanted embryo.  This last pregnancy took its toll on Jill, causing her to be off  work for most of the year and she was admitted to the hospital two weeks before she was due because she was so sick; she had high blood pressure and frequent vomiting, and the baby’s heart rate was too fast.

Jill Hawkins and Number 8, Oliver

Jill has suffered with depression in the past and decided that surrogacy was a way for her to give back but according to her family, the pregnancies have taken a toll on her mental health. This eighth pregnancy will be her last, Jill has decided enough is enough with this being the most difficult one for her.  Jill recently was given the British title of Most Prolific Surrogate Mother.  I think she gives new meaning to Legal Secretary of the Year!  Congratulations Jill to your recent title and your selfless assistance to couples who were unable to conceive on their own.
Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2010/10/04/meet-the-woman-who-gave-away-eight-kids/#ixzz11XsodMGY

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As someone who has lost a family member to breast cancer and has watched another family member go through the mastectomies and reconstruction surgeries and is now a breast cancer survivor, the story I read today of a spunky paralegal and her battle and survival of breast cancer made me realize just how strong we women are.  (Well, I actually knew that but this just cements it.)

Alicia Joy Bloom, Paralegal and Breast Cancer Survivor

Alecia Joy Bloom is a paralegal with Proskaeur Rose in Newark and she says that her spunky, no-holds-barred attitude has served her well not only as a paralegal but a cancer survivor.   As a paralegal I can attest that we have to be tough women in our field and perhaps this is what helped her fight this tough battle.  When Ms. Bloom was diagnosed in 2003 with two types of cancers: intraductal, the most common kind, and invasive, the type that is already attacking other tissue, she kept her cool and courage, fought through it, and dealt with her fears and other questions, like when she was asked about her illness by her then-landlord.  She said,  “He asked me, ‘Are you afraid of dying?’ and she said, ‘No, I’m going to get through this, and I’m going to be fine. It’s going to be six months of a stumbling block, and then I will be fine.'”

Ms. Bloom says her family and friends gave her confidence, positivity and hope.  “I said to them, ‘You can take my boobs, but you can’t take my life.'”  Ms. Bloom is active with the Middlesex County Chapter of the American Cancer Society and will host an upcoming fun-draiser.

According to the article, Ms. Bloom has always been a get-up-and-go person and she was just going to keep going during this tough time.   She believes we are here to do something more with your life if you can see the bigger picture through the whole thing.   She felt that breast cancer for her was a gift and that you can show women that you can be strong, sexy, smart and still live a healthy life.

This month of October is designated as Breast Cancer Awareness Month and there are many fundraisers going on, you can check your local area to volunteer, donate or join an event, by going here.

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As a paralegal at a Louisville, Ky., law firm, Merrell Williams snatched research exposing cigarettes’ addictiveness and potential to kill long hidden by tobacco giant Brown & Williamson.

I ran across this article today in the St. Petersburg Times and it caught my eye. Not only because the man mentioned in the article was a paralegal, but because I was flipping channels on the tv the other day, ( it is one of my families pet peeves about me, I watch 2-3 programs at once) and the movie with Russell Crow was on about taking the tobacco industry down.

The article is interesting and Mr. Williams is definitely a contradiction, bouncing from he doesn’t care anymore to how the attorneys only cared about making money in this suit. For more on the article, click below. I am sure you will find it as interesting as I did.

Whistle-blower in Big Tobacco case seeks quiet life in Dunedin – St. Petersburg Times

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