Discussion: Legislative Action and Reflection
The path to becoming a clinical mental health professional has required you to develop strong personal skills, including skills in self-care, but fortunately you havenâ€™t had to do it all by yourself. Throughout this course, you have been working with your peers, and together you have been making social change over the weeks of this course. This week, you and your peers will continue to pursue positive social change by advocating for legislative action.
For this Discussion, you will prepare to contact a legislative representative to advocate for legislative action on a topic that interests you, and you will reflect on how personal actions on advocacy can impact you and your current and future clients.
- Review Part 3 of your Final Project and look for what you found compelling and would seek for further advocacy opportunities.
- Search the ACA websites (Including the ACA branches site) in this weekâ€™s Learning Resources to research current legislative concerns in the counseling profession, and select one legislative concern that interests you.
- Based on the issue you chose, determine whom to contact: your federal, state, or local elected official.
- Compose an email or letter to the chosen elected official about the legislative concern.
- Note: Your letter or email will be more effective if you address a single topic or issue rather than a variety of issues you may feel passionate about. Typed, 1-page letters are best. Many Political Action Committees (PACs) recommend a three-paragraph letter that is straightforward and to the point.
- Review the web article â€œTips for Writing Effective Letters to Congressâ€ in the Learning Resources for more recommendations on writing your e-mail or letter.
- Cite at least two scholarly articles in the email or letter to support your position.
- Keep the email or letter succinct (no more than 3 paragraphs).
By Day 3
Post the content of your letter or email and a reflection on the impact of your action. Use the following questions to guide your reflection:
- How do your personal actions as a professional counselor (such as writing a letter to your congressperson) impact your current and future clients?
- How do these types of actions tie in to Waldenâ€™s commitment to social change?