Welcome to the legislative advocacy page, your guide to standing up for your profession. Legislators in Richmond and Washington take action every year on a variety of issues that will influence your ability to practice psychology. It is every psychologist’s job to understand the laws that may expand or limit your practice, and to educate yourself and your elected representatives on the need for laws and regulations that encourage those in need to seek help affordably, and allow Licensed Clinical Psychologists adequate autonomy to practice. The most valuable relationships our profession has are the long-term ongoing ones that psychologists build with their representatives, who may be reachable not just by e-mail, but in your neighborhood grocery store as well. They are real people, and they want to be contacted and educated by their constituents/mental health professionals.
Here’s how it works. When the APA wants psychologists to contact their Congressperson or Senator regarding a Federal law that Congress is considering, they will get word to you via e-mail directly if you are an APA member and through NVCP’s Federal Advocacy Coordinator. You may be asked to e-mail, call, or meet personally with a Senator, Congressperson, or their Legislative Aides about an issue of interest to us. The Capwiz program referenced below, under “Find Your Elected Officials”, can help you identify and contact your Federal legislators.
The Virginia General Assembly may have even more direct influence over how we work, as they pass laws that directly affect our practices. We are each represented by a State Senator and a State Delegate. You can find out who represents you through the “Find Your Elected Officials” below, and learn more about the state government through the websites for the Virginia General Assembly (virginiageneralassembly.gov) and the Virginia Association of Clinical Psychologists (vapsych.org). When an issue of interest to us comes before the state government, the legislative advocate may keep you informed through the message board, and ask constituents of particular delegates or senators on key committees to be in touch with their representatives.
Legislative Action Center
Welcome and thank you for sharing your training and expertise and making your voice heard to Members of Congress and the Administration on issues critical to your patients and profession.
Learn about important federal and state issues highlighted by the American Psychological Association here: Take Action! You can find your elected officials and see their current legislation and recent votes by clicking here: Find your Elected Officials.
Learn more about advocacy and civic engagement here: Advocacy 101 and get your reps’ votes by emailing weekly here: MegaVote