PIECE OF MIND
DO WE HAVE AN ETHICAL OBLIGATION TO WEIGH IN ON THE SUBJECT OF SAME-SEX MARRIAGE?
Last year, the APA released findings in support of same-sex marriage, concluding that, "denying same-sex couples legal access to civil marriage is discriminatory and can adversely affect the psychological, physical, social and economic well-being of gay and lesbian individuals." In January, the President and Faculty of Antioch University of LA challenged the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists -- the statewide organization representing 29,000 MFTs -- to do the same. In a quickly deliberated meeting, CAMFT's board decided to remain silent on the issue, citing that to do otherwise would deviate from its mission and result in an inappropriate use of resources. The San Francisco Chapter of CAMFT believes differently. Last month, our chapter's board sent a formal response to CAMFT, objecting to the association's position, citing a belief that we have an ethical obligation to take a stand on societal issues that affect our clients" emotional well-being. It's as if the association repressed the fact that the word "marriage" appears in its title. Our chapter Board is disappointed and outraged by CAMFT's silence, but more so, that the issue was decided without a survey of or discussion with its membership. If you have a view, let your voice be heard. Contact CAMFT and insist on a process that includes dialogue and debate. Email CAMFT's executive director, Mary Riemersma at firstname.lastname@example.org CAMFT's board president, Patrick Healy at email@example.com.
Bruce Weitzman, MFT
President, San Francisco Chapter, CAMFT