A plan introduced by state Rep. Aaron Miller and signed into law in October updating and clarifying Michigan counseling practices took effect today.
Updates were needed because the state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) proposed a rule that would have precluded many licensed professional counselors (LPCs) from using counseling techniques and psychotherapy to treat patients.
“LPCs are invaluable to patients and families across Michigan,” said Miller, of Sturgis. “My colleagues and I have been committed to improving access to mental health across the state and I’m proud to have had the opportunity to advocate for counselors.
“Special thanks go to former Rep. Jim Tedder, who first introduced this legislation in 2018 but was unfortunately unable to complete the process before the end of his last term. In his final weeks in office, he asked me to carry the torch to the finish line to deliver on the promises he made to Michigan LPCs.”
In addition to clarifying psychotherapy and diagnosis as counseling techniques, the law now reflects current training standards that have improved over the past three decades.
“Prior to today, the law hadn’t been updated since 1988. A lot has changed since then – the law needed to reflect modern practices,” Miller said. “Counselors in communities across Michigan advocated for these changes for years. This is a historic day for those professionals.”
The new law is Public Act 96 of 2019.
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