The Connecticut Counseling Association is pleased to report that the budget approved by the Connecticut legislature incorporates the language of HB 7132, the CCA-sponsored bill that provides for tiered licensure for Connecticut’s Professional Counselors and Marriage and Family Therapists. We now join those forty or so other states (as well as our social work colleagues here in Connecticut) with a licensing structure that allows recent graduates to work as licensed mental health professionals as they complete the mandatory supervised hours needed for full licensure. First tier counselors will be referred to as Licensed Professional Counselor Associates (LPCAs) as they practice under supervision, and the second tier license (Licensed Professional Counselors) will be for those practicing independently.
As you all know, this achievement is the culmination of years of effort by CCA’s leaders and members, so many of whom worked diligently to see this complicated process through to successful completion. A warmest thanks to all of you, and especially the many graduate students who provided enormous support this year; this is your victory and you should all be proud of the accomplishment. This is the power of advocacy. As always, CCA is grateful for the wise counsel and guidance of our lobbyists Ken Przybysz and Brian Sullivan, who expertly steered this bill (and our earlier efforts) through the many legislative challenges. We could not have done this without them. Thank you, Ken and Brian!
Thank your legislator: To the many counselors, counselor-educators and students who were in contact with their legislators during this process, please take a moment to send them a quick note of thanks. We had a number of legislators who listened carefully to our requests and became strong supporters of the bill and of counseling as a profession. Let them know how much we appreciate their support! Watch for CCA emails and website updates: Over the summer, CCA will provide more details about the implementation of the bill, which is scheduled to take effect on October 1, 2019. We also hope to schedule several town hall meetings around the state in September to provide members with all the information they will need to understand tiered licensure, the specifics of the new statute and what it means for your practice. If you have particular questions, send them to Trip Hartigan (firstname.lastname@example.org), who will work to put together an FAQ section for the website.
Enjoy this victory: This is an important step forward for the counseling profession in Connecticut. There is always more work to do, and your CCA leaders are committed to ongoing legislative advocacy that continues to strengthen the profession. But for now, congratulate yourselves and your colleagues on this great win and have a wonderful summer. You deserve it!