TCA Public Policy


86th Legislative Session – January 10, 2019 thru May 29, 2019

Support the counseling profession and TCA’s public policy agenda!

  • Mark your calendar and plan to attend TCA’s Advocacy Days at the State Capitol - Register Now

    • March 19, 2019
    • April 16, 2019 
    • May 14, 2019
  • Log in and check out our 2019 Advocacy Resource Manual
  • Watch TCA's Advocacy Training Video
  • Watch TCA's "How to Email a State Legislator" Advocacy Video
  • Watch your email for TCA Action Alerts (See past Alerts below.)
  • Stay up to date on State issues affecting the counseling profession including bill updates, committee hearings and public comment requests.


TCA/TSCA Testifies Before Senate Select Committee on Violence in Schools


July 18, 2018, TCA and TSCA were invited to testify before the Senate Select Committee on Violence in Schools and School Security. TCA/TSCA member Sharon Bey testified. Thank you Sharon! View her testimony starting at 2:48:33. Contact your representatives and ask them to support use of the Texas Model for Comprehensive School Counseling.


TCA/TSCA Testifies Before House Committees on Public Health/Education

June 27-28, 2018 TCA and TSCA were invited by the House Public Education and Public Health Committees to testify on strategies to create safe and secure schools and improve mental health for all Texans. TSCA President-elect Kimberly Ridgeley, TCA Past President Cyndi Doyle, and TSCA Past President Eli Zambrano gave testimony. View 6/27 and 6/28 testimony at the Texas House Public Education/Public Education committee hearings. Thank you members who took time to testify!

TCA Statement on Immigrant Children

The members of the Texas Counseling Association express concern regarding the harmful effects of separating children from their families which is currently occurring at our borders.

Research indicates that separating parents and children during stressful life events create Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) leading to progressive life-long trauma, chronic fear, and impaired brain development. Cortical structures do not develop properly, which impacts attention, planning, judgment, and emotional control.These impairments have long lasting effects into adulthood.

TCA supports a swift and urgent reunification process for families that have been separated at the U.S. border. TCA also urges the current administration to provide a safe environment and necessary mental health treatment for the trauma inflicted upon all family members impacted.

Contact your representatives and educate them on the impact of separating families and the positive mental health impact of reunification.

View a list of organizations that are mobilizing to help immigrant children separated from their families.

Read more about the impact:

Akers, K. (2014). Cozolino, Louis. The neuroscience of human relationships: attachment and the developing social brain. CHOICE: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, (12). 2273.

Tello, A., Castellon, N., Aguilar, A., Sawyer, C., (2017). Unaccompanied refugee minors from Central America: Understanding their journey and implications for counselors. The Professional Counselor, 7(4), 360-374, doi:10.15241/amt.7.4.36.

Thank You for Your Calls and Emails: Sunset Update

On May 24, The Sunset Commission voted on the decisions that drive the legislation governing the structure of the mental health licensing boards. Their actions aligned with the recommendations made by our coalition which includes TCA, NASW-TX, TAMFT, and TSCSW, and include:

Consolidate the Board of Marriage and Family Therapists, Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors, Board of Social Worker Examiners with the Board of Examiners of Psychologists to create the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council.

  • Keep the executive council makeup of five public members and four professional members but give the professional members voting privileges instead of being ex-officio non-voting members.
  • Direct BHEC to develop policies and procedures to ensure its rule-making function focuses solely on creating rules governing administration of licensure, investigation and sanction procedures for the agency and reviewing rules proposed by each licensing board for anti-competitive impacts, administrative consistency, and good governance concerns – not infringing on matters related to professional standards of practice.

They also adopted other Sunset Commission staff recommendations that were not of concern to TCA and our allies. The next step will be drafting legislation to be considered by the Legislature when it convenes in January. Please know that TCA will be your strong voice throughout this process. We will keep you informed and alerted to the need for next steps. In the meantime, please be sure to thank the members of the Sunset Commission for their support.

View the April 25, 2018 Sunset Commission hearing. Testimony on the behavioral health boards begins at 2:38:00, and TCA testimony begins at 4:11:59.

Position Statements Sunset Commission Staff Report: Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists; Texas State Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors, Texas State Board of Social Worker Examiners TCA talking points on Sunset Report

Advocacy Action Alerts

June 27-28, 2018
House Public Education and Public Health Committee hearings with TCA/TSCA testimony.
April 27, 2018 Sunset Hearings: Action Needed!
April 5, 2018
Sunset Review Action Needed; Licensing Board Tips
August 4, 2017
Dr. Katherine Bacon's Senate Health and Human Services Committee Testimony, SB 114
August 3, 2017
Call to Action: Sunset Legislation on the Move!
June 20, 2017 TCA Bill Status Report - Final
June 13, 2017
Call to Action, Membership eUpdate June 2017
June 2, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
May 26, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
May 22, 2017 Urgent Call to Action
May 19, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
May 15, 2017
Action Alert! Contact HHSC on Medicaid Rate Rules by 5/18/17
May 12, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
May 9, 2917 CORRECTED Urgent Action Alert!
May 8, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
April 28, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
April 21, 2017 CORRECTED Call to Action and Weekly Update
April 14, 2017 CORRECTED Call to Action and Weekly Update
April 7, 2017
Call to Action and Weekly Update
March 31, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
March 28, 2017
Action Alert!
March 24, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
March 17, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
March 10, 2017 Breaking News and Weekly Update
March 3, 2017 Call to Action and Weekly Update
February 24, 2017 SB 1022 and Texas Supreme Court Ruling
December 6, 2016
Contact all Sunset Commission members regarding the staff report. Contact information and talking points.