Urgent Request To Say No To Licensing Alternative Therapies In Massachusetts!
Please help us defeat S.191/ H.282, An Act regulating alternative healing therapies at the July 10 hearing.
On Monday, July 3, during the July 4th holiday long weekend, a surprise hearing was scheduled for Monday, July 10, which opponents of licensing Reiki and other holistic health modalities are urged to attend virtually, in-person and/or with written testimony. Last day to register to give in-person or virtual testimony is Friday, July 7. See details below.
The proposed legislation S.191/H.282, An Act regulating alternative healing therapies, affects therapies such as Reiki, Asian bodywork therapy, reflexology, Feldenkrais Method, Trager Approach, Ayurvedic therapies, polarity or polarity therapy, Structural Integration or Rolfing, qi gong, and Body/Mind Centering. This bill creates a licensing board of 3 massage therapists and 2 alternative health practitioners, members who will not have the expertise in many of the 150+ holistic modalities it proposes to oversee. This board will establish professional and ethical conduct, will direct practitioners how to practice and teach, and mandate continuing education that is cost prohibitive, and generally beyond the scope of many individual practices.
If this bill passes it will increase the cost of practicing, reduce the number of practitioners in the state, increase the cost of treatments to consumers, generate unnecessary barriers with higher fees to practice, increase unemployment, discriminate against low wage earners, people of color, and women.
This is the sixth time alternative health licensing bills have been filed in MA. S.191 and H.282 are the exactly the same, word for word and line by line that were filed in 2021. These bills seek to regulate holistic healthcare occupations with no evidence that these professions by themselves present any health or safety risk to the public.
The last three presidential administrations — Obama, Trump and Biden — have issued white papers or executive orders for state policymakers to enact reforms reducing the prevalence of unnecessary and overly broad occupational licensing that hurts workers and consumers. S.191 and H.282 fits those definitions and should be opposed.
Register to Give Oral Testimony at the State House (or Virtual) and/or Send Written Testimony to the Members of Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure in Opposition to these Bills.
PUBLIC HEARING DETAILS
The public is invited to participate in this hearing.
Registration to present oral testimony, both virtually and in person, is required.
To register, please fill out your contact information on the form on this link:
Deadline for registration: Friday, July 7 at 5:00 PM
If providing testimony virtually, you will receive an invitation to the hearing with instructions via email after the deadline closes.
Please note that there is a time limit of 3 minutes per person for oral testimony.
Instructions for testifying and/or submitting written testimony may be found on the following webpage under the heading Event Details: https://malegislature.gov/Events/Hearings/Detail/4624
Written Electronic Testimony
The subject line of your email should be: Testimony in Opposition to S.191 and H.282, An Act Regulating Alternative Healing Therapies
Further, the Committee may schedule an executive session to coincide with this hearing, and Joint Committee members would expect to be provided any further advanced notice and materials to review. Do not hesitate to contact Marissa Dakin (Marissa.Dakin@mahouse.gov) and Dana Mascari (Dana.Mascari@masenate.gov) with any inquiries.
Sample Letter To Use For Your Written E-Mail Testimony
(Month) (Day) (Year)
Boston, MA 02133
RE: Testimony in Opposition to S.191 and H.282, An Act Regulating Alternative Healing Therapies
Dear Chairs, Senator Cronin and Representative Chan, Vice Chairs Senator Moran and Representative Keefe, and Members of the Committee:
Example: I want to voice my strong opposition to S.191 and H.282 as it affects over 150 holistic modalities (or 150 different styles of Reiki practice) that will not be fairly represented with the proposed Board of Massage and Alternative Healing Therapies. There is no risk of harm to the public from these modalities. The restriction that you can only be licensed if you receive training at a program licensed by the state will put many holistic health care practitioners and teachers out of business and on unemployment because of the burdensome fees. They will limit healthcare choices for consumers, raise prices of sessions, and close hospital and hospice volunteer programs.
Please vote no on S.191 and H.282. I would greatly appreciate a response. Thank you for your time and consideration of this issue.
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