Legislation was recently introduced to make several positive changes to the Substance Abuse Professional Practices Act. The bill, House Bill 615, was sought by the NCSAPPB members and accomplishes the following things:
- Keeps substance abuse counseling credentials uniform across state lines. Standards were raised two years ago and North Carolina must change statute to keep reciprocity agreements in place.
- Increases training opportunities for applicants and licensees by expanding definitions to include online webinars and other video conferencing mediums.
- Reforms regulatory process by “sunsetting” the Certified Substance Abuse Residential Facility Director credential. There are less than twelve of these licensees in the state and they are no longer required for practice.
- Establishes Peer Assistance Program for addictions counselors, allowing more professionals to seek help and stay working in the profession. APNC has been working for many years to see such a program in NC.
- Gives General Assembly and Governor greater supervision and authority over the licensing board by increasing the number of Board seats appointed by the Speaker of the House, Senate President pro tem and Governor. Currently each of these has one appointment. Proposal will increase to two appointments each. Number of Board seats will remain constant.
How can you help?
This bill is presently in the House Health Committee. We’d like to have it heard soon before the “crossover” deadline late this month. We ask you to:
- Contact members of the House Health Committee (especially the committee chairs) and ask them to schedule a vote on HB 615. Click HERE to download a list of the House Health Committee members.
- Tell them this bill streamlines the licensing process, lessens regulation and keeps practice standards uniform across various states.
- Thank them for their work to advance the needs of those with substance use disorder.