On July 9, 2020 Governor Whitmer’s Executive Directive 2020-7 directed the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) to begin developing rules that will require implicit bias training as part of the knowledge and skills necessary for licensure, registration, and renewal of licenses and registrations of health professionals in Michigan. Recognizing the gravity of health disparities and its far-reaching negative implications for Michiganders, the Michigan Mental Health Counselors Association (MMHCA) immediately acknowledged our responsibility to act. We thereby, expeditiously, began the process of forming a task force of diverse persons to develop a training that would help in the reduction and eventual elimination of unconscious biases, misconceptions, and stereotypes that often lead health care disparities.
The mission of the Michigan Mental Health Counselors Association is to develop and empower the mental health counseling profession and promote mental health for the community. Our mission obligates us to responsible action on matters of mental health in the state of Michigan. MMHCA’s holds health care disparities as a crisis, and thereby remains committed to the development of a comprehensive, robust training that meets, and in some ways, surpasses the state mandated standards. The task force was charged with developing robust training that will set the standard for future implicit bias training and training standards in the State of Michigan. This training is a “living project” As mental health needs and research support the necessity of revision, efforts will be undertaken to update the content to address identified changes.
This Implicit Bias training is evidence of our on-going commitment to Michigan’s mental health.
Katherine E. James, MMHCA President 2020-2021