BACP asks for resolutions and motions for their AGM each year. A resolution is a proposal on any matter of business which is put to the vote of all members. If it’s passed by members, the Board of Governors (the Board) is legally bound to implement it, depending on charity and company law and other relevant legal requirements. Members are required to vote on whether these should appear on the AGM ballot paper. Resolutions need at least 5% support from the membership to be on the ballot paper for members vote at the 2020 Annual General Meeting (AGM).
The #TherapistsConnect team have interviewed the proposers of Resolution 2 about their motivations for proposing their resolution for the 2020 AGM. Their resolution is as follows: Resolution 2: Scrap the cost of applying for and maintaining the membership level of individual accreditation
To support this resolution you need to be a BACP member and vote before 23rd October. Please check your emails for your link to vote or request BACP to resend.
What is your resolution?
Our resolution is asking BACP to scrap Individual Accreditation Fees. We would like to see an end to the cost of applying for and maintaining the membership level of individual accreditation.
Who are the proposers?
Proposer - Tara Shennan. Seconder - Maria Albertsen.
Tara is Counsellors Together UKs lead on social and political issues and for National Counsellors’ Day. Tara also provides general management support and will often write for our News section.
Tara is a qualified counsellor who has been working with children and young people for 5 years. She is a psychology undergraduate and is researching the impact of exploitation on counsellors’ well-being on behalf of Counsellors Together UK. She is also a guest lecturer on the Clinical Psychology Doctorate at the University of Essex.
Find Tara on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/x_TaraS_x
Maria is the Founder of Counsellors Together UK. She oversees the daily running of the organisation and is the lead on our school’s based counselling campaign. She is also the main contact for the CTUK Members Club and National Counsellors’ Day.
About Maria - Maria is an experienced counsellor, psychotherapist and supervisor with over 22 years of experience working in both the private and public sectors (NHS & Education). She has managed young people’s counselling services and set up and delivered successful school-based counselling services, working alongside charities and statutory organisations. She has experience in business development and marketing for counselling organisations and individual therapists in private practice. Maria is the Founder of Counsellors Together UK.
You can find out more about Maria at www.mariaalbertsen.com
What is your resolution trying to achieve?
We are trying to ensure that BACPs accreditation process is a fair process which doesn’t exclude members based on financial inequalities, and negatively impact their future employment opportunities and professional development as a result.
What motivated you to submit this to BACP?
In managing CTUK for the last 3 years we are often told by members how unfair it feels to have to pay for accreditation, a voluntary process, once they have already qualified, and also how the financial cost in both application and increased membership fees is a real barrier for some.
We know from the BACP 2014 members survey that over 52% of therapists earn less than £10,000 per year - this makes the £230 application fee extortionate to those members. Furthermore, it stops members who are unable to pay for accreditation, through no fault of their own, being eligible to apply for many jobs or work within EAPs, as the majority of employers require accredited status. This feels wholly unfair and we believe that BACP should work towards ensuring that all barriers to accreditation are removed.
What feedback have you had from your members around this resolution?
CTUK members have been keen to support this resolution. The financial barriers to accreditation have been spoken about within our group for several years now, and members see this resolution as removing a barrier and promoting more equality between members.
How can members support you with this resolution?
It would be great if members can use their vote to support this resolution and also help us to spread the word by asking their colleagues, tutors and other contacts who are a member of BACP to vote in favour of it too.
A voluntary membership process shouldn't create a system where you can be too poor to work. We can eradicate some of this probable by removing the costs associated with the application and the ongoing increased membership fee. Alternative membership bodies offer this change in membership status for free. BACP should follow suit if they wish to meet the requirements of the Professional Standards Authority (PSA), who stated in August 2020 in their renewal of BACP's position on their accredited registers programme, that one of the key recommendations for the BACP to consider was how its accreditation programme may exclude members.
We really believe that if this resolution is passed it will remove a huge financial barrier for many in terms of applying for and gaining accreditation. It will therefore open up more paid employment opportunities for members who do successfully apply for accreditation and make the playing field more equal for all.