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New Ethics Committee Launching This January

Tuesday, January 9, 2018   (0 Comments)
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The Massachusetts Psychological Association's new Ethics Committee will be launching in January 2018. Its goal is to serve solely as a consultative and educational service in matters related to the ethical conduct of psychologists. This service is available without charge to all MPA members as a member benefit. The new committee of five MPA psychologists, selected to reflect diverse experience and expertise, has met monthly since September 2016 to revise and clarify its mission. 
In 2014, MPA members voted to approve the Board of Directors' recommendation that the bylaws be changed to no longer independently adjudicate ethics complaints, as independent ethics adjudications are redundant with those conducted by state licensing boards and the APA ethics board, and open the organization to substantial legal exposure.

The new MPA Ethics Committee plans to provide support primarily through a call-in consultation service. Information provided to members will not advocate a specific course of action, but will help psychologists conceptualize ethical dilemmas and potential resolutions from the perspective of the APA Code of Ethics. Calls to the Ethics Committee will be free and confidential, and committee members will work collaboratively on all calls to provide the best possible consultation. Callers requesting legal advice will be referred to MPA's legal consult member benefit and other appropriate resources. We recommend that all callers seek the advice of an attorney before making decisions that are likely to have legal consequences.  

To request a confidential consultation, call the MPA office at 781-263-0080 x10. A staff member will forward your name and telephone number to a member of the committee. Only your name and phone number will be requested, and this information will be securely discarded by the Ethics Committee member providing the consult at the conclusion of the consultation. The committee member will return your call promptly, within 2-3 business days. After understanding your issue, s/he will confer with the committee, and call you back with a response.

A list of committee members, their bios, and a selection of additional articles and resources are available at We are expecting the new MPA Ethics Committee to be a valuable resource to MPA members. Please call if you would like a consultation.

Beth A. Jerskey, Ph.D.
Chair, Massachusetts Psychological Association Ethics Committee
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior (Research)
Alpert Medical School of Brown University


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