I'm pleased to share highlights from the February 2024 American Psychological Association (APA) Council Meeting. APA's Council of Representatives, including SPSP's representatives Kimberly Kahn and Jennifer Lodi-Smith, held a hybrid meeting in Washington, D.C. on February 23-24. APA Council passed many important resolutions related to timely social issues.

Here is what SPSP members should know about APA's Council Meeting:

  1. Calling for an End to Involuntary Individual Isolation in Incarcerated Youth: Council passed a resolution calling to end the practice of placing youths in isolation in juvenile justice settings, with limited exceptions. It supports implementing alternative, evidence-based strategies for managing youth behavior, including supporting mental health for incarcerated youth.
  2. Secure Firearms Storage: Council passed a resolution to promote secure firearm storage practices, and highlighting the role of psychologists and other health care providers to encourage secure firearm storage to help reduce suicides during mental health crises.
  3. Policy Statement on Evidence-Based Inclusive Care for Transgender, Gender Diverse, and Nonbinary Individuals: Council passed a policy statement affirming evidence-based care for transgender, gender-diverse, and nonbinary children, adolescents, and adults. APA supports access to evidence-based clinical care for transgender, gender-diverse, and nonbinary children, adolescents, and adults.
  4. Approval of APA/APASI Strategic Plan: Council approved the updated APA/APASI strategic plan that includes updated language that adds specificity, aligns with current EDI strategies, and focuses on partnerships. 
  5. Parents with Disabilities: Council adopted a resolution to support parents with disabilities, emphasizing the biases that they often face in keeping their children. It calls for increased psychological research, intervention, advocacy, and policy development related to parents with disabilities in order to reduce disparities that they encounter in the legal system.
  6. Combating Misinformation and Promoting Psychological Science Literacy: This adopted resolution focuses on combating misinformation and promoting psychological science literacy, and understanding the psychological factors that drive it.
  7. Revised Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Older Adults: Council adopted revised Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Older Adults, which focus more attention on the needs of older adults, and promoting workforce competency in working with older adults.
  8. APA Business: Council discussed modality options for future Council meetings, and approved a change in APA dues.
  9. Address by Dr. Miriam Delphin-Rittman: Council listened to Dr. Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), who spoke about mental health across diverse populations, building the workforce, addressing substance use disorders, and suicide prevention.

If you have additional questions, would like more information, or want to get involved in APA, please contact Kimberly Kahn, [email protected], as the APA Division 8 (SPSP) Council Representative.

We hope to see many SPSP members at the upcoming APA Convention August 8-10 in Seattle, Washington, also with a virtual option of attendance.