Sameerah Davenporti, lecturer in Counselor Education was quoted on WDET-FM, "Michigan House passes bill to preserve mental health counselors ability to practice"Return to news listing
Michigan House passes bill to preserve mental health counselors ability to practice
By Eleanore Catolico
Last Tuesday, the state House unanimously voted 108-0 to approve House Bill 4325 which would allow licensed professional counselors to continue to practice clinical techniques, including diagnosis, psychotherapy and development of treatment plans to address behavioral issues. This comes as lawmakers, counselors and mental health advocates have shown strong opposition to newly proposed regulations that could limit the ability of licensed professional counselors to treat patients, which sparked outrage in the mental health community. Earlier this year, the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) proposed regulations that would limit the ability of licensed professional counselors to treat patients by overhauling education and licensure requirements for licensed professional counselors. Proposed changes include revised educational curriculum standards and required examinations, among others. Sameerah Davenport is a lecturer at Wayne State and a licensed professional counselor with a practice based in St. Clair Shores. She says that the proposed changes have sparked outrage in the mental health community. “Everyone should be in an uproar right now. These are people’s lives at stake,” Davenport says. “Every day we deal with people who are suicidal, who are homicidal. We have the training, we have the knowledge, we have the ability.” The bill was introduced by State Rep. Aaron Miller, R-Sturgis in March. It will now be passed to the Senate for approval. If approved in the Senate, Governor Gretchen Whitmer would then have to sign the bill to enshrine it into law.