On February 18, Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers was proud to be the title sponsor of Canadian Lawyer’s Women in Law Summit, an event geared to recognize and celebrate women in the legal profession. Rose Leto and Sonia Nijjar, both personal injury lawyers at Neinstein, served as co-chairs and delivered a presentation titled ‘Opportunity in Crisis: The Power of Female Leadership.’
As it has in many areas of our society, the COVID-19 pandemic exasperated existing inequalities in the legal field.
“Women are lawyering in a home environment where they are still the default parent – the one to manage the children, to juggle childcare, to deal with the homeschooling,” Leto told Canadian Lawyer. “To have the burdens of the household placed upon you while finding a way to keep your day job and be competitive and marketable in a legal environment is super challenging.”
In a field where having one’s voice and opinions heard can be a struggle at the best of times, and where marketing and networking opportunities are traditionally geared towards men, the pandemic has reinforced the obligation that experienced women in the legal profession have to mentor their younger counterparts. But, as Nijjar told Canadian Lawyer, women entering the field also need sponsorship: “People who will go to bat for you, who will make space for you or show you how to make space and have ample space available to share with you.”
“It’s a challenge not only other women in the law have to be alive to – women who have obtained leadership or other opportunities that give them that platform – but men too,” Nijjar continued. “We need allies everywhere.”
In their presentation, Leto and Nijjar recognized notable female leaders from around the world and emphasized that leadership styles prioritizing empathy, data, trustworthiness, and resilience are critically needed to counterbalance male leadership styles rooted in aggression and bravado. They also noted that these positive traits are perfectly suited to the legal profession; many Toronto personal injury lawyers represent diverse and vulnerable client populations that benefit from empathy and recognition of the importance of inclusion and diversity.
“We wanted to speak out, to collaborate to share our experience and hear theirs and talk about things that worked and ways we could all work together towards meaningful change,” Leto said. “It’s a unique event and the hope is that the spirit of it continues beyond the conference.”
Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers has represented seriously injured accident victims from across Ontario for more than five decades. If you or a member of your family has been injured, contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
Image: Canadian Lawyer