Championing Change: Stefanie Costi featured in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian for her inspiring advocacy efforts

Championing Change: Stefanie Costi featured in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian for her inspiring advocacy efforts.

This month, we recognise the advocacy efforts of our Sydney based lawyer, Stefanie Costi (Watts McCray Lawyers). After publicly sharing her story about previous bullying as a young legal professional, Stefanie was recently featured on the front page of The Sydney Morning Herald and other newspaper outlets, such as The Australian.

Feeling the need to act after her personal experiences, Stefanie started writing, speaking, responding to messages late at night, and calling victims, psychologists, and employers on the way home from work to educate and help as many people as she could. Thousands have since reached out to Stefanie Costi to say “me too,” including members of the judiciary, barristers, senior lawyers, junior lawyers, paralegals, secretaries, and others impacted in the profession.

The Honourable Mark Buttigieg, MLC Parliamentary Secretary for Industrial Relations, Work Health and Safety, and Multiculturalism, along with Narelle Rich JP and Peter Munford of the United Services Union, noticed Stefanie’s efforts and amplified and supported her initiative. Last week, The Honourable Mark Buttigieg gave a speech in Parliament calling for an end to bullying in the legal profession in the Legislative Council of NSW Parliament. In his speech, The Honourable Mark Buttigieg acknowledged Stefanie’s story and announced that the United Services Union would be spearheading a campaign to help people in the legal profession. The Honourable Mark Buttigieg asked Minister Sophie Cotsis to consider recognising these matters in legislation.

Stefanie notes that she is grateful for the support of Barry Frakes (Principal Lawyer and Sydney Practice Leader) and Watts McCray Lawyers, who she says is ‘the true embodiment of what it means to feel supported and valued at work.’ Stefanie’s advocacy for anti-bullying is a testament to the values we hold dear at Watts McCray Lawyers.

Watts McCray is committed to developing industry best practice in workplace relations so that all staff can develop their skills and careers to achieve their goals in the profession with a work life balance and feeling safe and supported at work. Watts McCray has a proud history of developing women’s careers in the legal industry, with several women being promoted as they have gone on maternity leave and then returning to flexible workplace arrangements that suit them and their families. Also, several women who have been solicitors at Watts McCray have gone on in their careers to eventually be appointed members of the judiciary.

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