Friday, July 01, 2005

Love in some sort of action (or not)

More from T, this time another update on the "Love in Action"/"Refuge" facility in Memphis. According to the Washington Blade, Tennessee is now investigating whether LIA is operating without approrpiate licensure.
Turner said that if the program is strictly faith-based it would not require licensing by the state, but that according to the group’s Web site, Love in Action has licensed counselors and provides services related to alcohol and drug addiction on site.
It's a bit of a catch-22 for LIA, which does have one licensed counselor on staff. If this counselor is on staff for the alcohol/drug treatment program, they cannot avoid the state requirement for licensing by claiming to be a faith based ministry; if they claim the counselor is treating clients for "reparative therapy", he is working well outside his realm of expertise.
Legislation giving the health department the authority to issue cease-and-desist orders to unlicensed alcohol and drug treatment facilities goes into effect July 1. Turner said that the health department is considering whether the Love in Action facility is causing harm.

Rachel Lassiter, of Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen’s communications office, said that the Department of Mental Health & Developmental Disabilities has also begun research on Love in Action and is writing a letter of inquiry to the facility to determine whether an official investigation is warranted.

Lassiter said that only licensed professionals should provide mental health care in Tennessee and that the state has an interest in making sure that whatever services are offered are beneficial.
Even a leading proponent of "reparative therapy" has raised concerns about the LIA program mixing ministry with treatment in a manner that can be damaging, emphasizing that a parent can compel a teen to attend church but that a professional counselor is bound to obtain consent (more correctly, it would be assent from the teen in addition to consent from the parents/guardian) to treat a teen and that a counselor "should not treat a minor solely because his parents are upset about his sexual orientation."

click here to search all DF posts related to Zach/LIA

Tags: ; ; ; ; ;

Sphere: Related Content

No comments: