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Working with COVID – where to from here?

How we will deal with clients or staff who can’t or choose not to vaccinate is just one of the critical issues we’ll face as our people and firms adjust to the new COVID normal.

And looking at possible solutions to these issues will be a key feature of the closing plenary at this year’s Queensland Law Society Personal Injuries Conference on Thursday and Friday 18 and 19 November.

The session, facilitated by Shine Lawyers National Practice Leader – Medical Law Clare Eves, will bring together three panellists – QLS Ethics and Practice Centre Special Counsel David Bowles, Hughes and Lewis Legal Director and QLS PI Committee member Belinda Hughes, and Cooper Grace Ward Workplace Relations & Safety Partner Belinda Winter, who is also Deputy Chair of the QLS Wellbeing Working Group.

“The session theme is moving forward in the next phase of COVID, with a focus on the issues that work-from-home and the changing vaccine landscape present for law firms and the people running or working in them,” David said.

“It is clear that lockdowns have changed both the business landscape and what clients expect of a law firm. Flexible work, virtual meetings and teams spread geographically have become commonplace and it is likely that this will remain so.

“Making sure our systems and people are ready for the ‘new normal’ is a key challenge for 2022.”

David said that information security was becoming a core skill both for law firms and the people who work in them, and he would touch on some of the common issues that arise in distributed work environments, with practical guidance to avoid disasters.

“Transition from lockdown to vaccination as the primary way to manage the COVID threat gives us a lot to think about,” he said. “Dealing with staff and clients who can’t or choose not to vaccinate and how to create an environment that respects everybody’s needs will be critical.

“Supporting individuals and teams who remain in remote work requires thought, and we will touch on some practical measures to do that.”

Learn more about the QLS Personal Injuries Conference being held on 18-19 November.

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