Nominations for PCU Executive Committee
As of 15.2.17
Yesterday was the deadline for committee nominations, and below (also attached) are the eight nominations received.
We are very grateful to the eight people who have come forward, and this should be a sufficient number to run Union business. Since there can be up to 12 committee members, a vote will not be needed.
However, we want to extend the period to receive nominations, for a further week, until the end of Wednesday February 22nd, in the hope that one or two more people may emerge. This is especially in view of the Constitution’s requirement that “the Executive Committee should seek to be representative of the practices and geographic, ethnic, gender and other composition of the membership.”
The nominations are as follows:
Nominated by Jane Clements
Seconded by Philip Cox
About me: I'm an integrative psychotherapist (though my job title is 'counsellor'). I work primarily with children and young people and their families, in primary schools in North London and for a counselling centre in Basildon. Before that, I worked for play and youth projects in Islington and was a Unison rep involved in struggles against cuts in the 1990s.
I've been involved with the PCU since its beginnings in September 2015, and have been on the Interim Committee since it was formed in February 2016. I've been involved in supporting several individual members, and in campaigning around government policy issues affecting therapists and clients (especially children & families), such as the Children & Social Work Bill and the consultation on Mental Health in Schools.
I intend to continue to help PCU build on the work that has been done in the last 18 months, as a growing organisation able to support its members and get our voices heard, while building links with other groups.
Nominated by Kate O’Halloran
Seconded by Nick Totton
I would like to put myself forward to be a member of the PCU Committee.
I haven't been part of a committee before but would like to get involved with PCU, I felt empowered by the opportunity to take part in helping to build it and strengthen the union.
Working in a private practice left me feeling isolated, detached from colleagues and from a sense of community within the profession, which is ironic when, in my view, the work we do is largely to help people feel less isolated, whether from their sense of self or from a community.
I feel strongly about the union principles and what it's proposing to offer. The recent prospect of it dissolving because of a lack of nominations for the committee, prompted me to volunteer. It would be such a retrograde step that I didn't want to leave it to chance.
I am aware of some of the issues the union is facing and I bring my openness and energy to work with what is there and with what is to come. Perhaps I am bringing a beginners mind and offering what I have; time and motivation to get involved.
I will bring my experience as a woman, immigrant, mother, experienced therapist and also as a trainee.
I'm Brazilian and have been living in London for the past 23 years.
After working in the music and fashion industry I took a break to became a mother and then decided to study psychotherapy.
I graduated from the London Institute of Psychosynthesis in 2002 and I am a member of the UKCP and BACP.
At the moment I am training in Couple Therapy at Re-vision.
Nominated by Kate O’Halloran
Seconded by Richard bagnall Oakeley
I qualified as a Psychodynamic Counsellor in November 2014. As a relatively newly qualified Counsellor I am appalled by the state of the profession and the issues facing the profession such as: lack of jobs; the exploitation of being expected to work for no pay or low wages; using therapy as a benefit sanction in the ‘workfare’ scheme and the general undermining of the profession, amongst others.
I have been involved in unions for most of my working life of 40 years and in my last job before training to be a counsellor I was a workplace union rep in the National Union of Journalists.
My particular interest is in campaigning and activity. As a political activist I have been and am involved in various campaigns: Stop the War; Unite Against Fascism; Defend Council Housing; Disabled People Against Cuts; local anti-cuts groups and Stand up To Racism.
I think unions should be at the forefront of actively fighting racism, inequality and discrimination.
I am committed to PCU and have been a member of the Interim Committee. I feel that the only way that the Therapy profession will improve is by Therapists collectively working together to change it and I believe this is why the union is so badly needed. I don’t think we can look to the government or any other body to give us decent employment terms and conditions we have to do this ourselves.
I will work to help the union grow in membership, to support existing members and for the union to be recognised within the profession.
Nominated by Andrew Samuels
Seconded by Guy Smith
Hello PCU member,
I would like to introduce myself and seek your support in the election for our Union committee.
Background: I’ve been working and training in the field of therapy for about 20-years. During that time I’ve seen many changes and developments. When IAPT was introduced I resigned my NHS primary care post because the rigid protocol-driven work was not something I could support. As I broadened my training the professional regulatory bodies began to seek more control over how we work. I have become increasingly concerned that our ability to practice creatively is being curtailed in order to ‘protect the public’. I’m also concerned at the colonisation of therapy. This includes the belief in some practice settings, training institutions and by regulators that there is only one way to practice, and one way to be healthy.
Representing you on the committee: Since joining the interim committee in autumn 2015, I have focused on complaints. Your Union has been very successful and I have been directly involved in supporting members to have good outcomes to complaint issues.
The Unions future: I’d like to see us expanding the membership and continuing to creatively link with other unions. Also, I hope the committee will become more representative of people of colour, the LGBTQRI community, dis/ability, students and those who experience the intersection of issues. Personally, I seek to continue with the complaints issues and expect that the collusion between the professional bodies and governments workfare policy will show the strengths of belonging to this Union.
Nominated by Amanda Bettison
Seconded by Debbie Cotton
I am in my penultimate year completing my MA in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy. I attended the PCSR ‘Big Issues’ event which led to the forming of PCU. I was inspired at the event listening to so many therapists and trainees reflecting on the state of play for counselling and psychotherapy. My eyes were opened to the various issues within which trainees are situated and go unchallenged - I was reassured in the knowledge that many experienced colleagues want to support and challenge the status quo for future generations of therapists.
A bit of background - I have over 10 years experience working in the education sector. After completing my degree in drama and education I worked for the Metropolitan Police Safer Schools Partnership initiative working closely with police and young people on a variety of projects, and as lecturer/tutor in applied theatre. More recently my work has focused upon specialist support for disabled and neurodiverse students in Higher education, in the workplace and with the charity Crisis as part of my role in the leadership of Diversity and Ability (DnA) a social enterprise that specialises in end-user led support in Higher Education.
I would like to join the PCU committee to raise awareness and offer my support other trainees and to help to shape the future vision of PCU. Among my skills is an aptitude for techy stuff for which I can draw on to support the committee and members.
Nominated by Andrew Samuels
Seconded by Philip Cox
I am 32, a trainee at the Philadelphia Association (PA), where I see several clients for their low cost scheme. I also work part time in a therapeutic community for the Arbours Association. The pay is outrageously low and I am in the process of slowly working together with my colleagues to question our conditions and how to fund more residents who cannot afford our very expensive services. In this vain I am also in the beginnings of creating a Therapeutic Communities working group.
Previously I studied contemporary political music and later taught guitar and music technology. Whilst obviously distinct, the spirit of music for me was a being-together-in-creativity, this I see as common with psychotherapy. Class was a confused concept for me growing up; my working class family was somewhat camouflaged behind credit/debt of mortgage, car and holidays. My father’s father was a train driver, mine a black taxi driver. I cannot help but fear that my family line of work is moving from a public good to the private sphere, something I want to reverse.
I have a particular interest in the politics of work, seeing Nietzsche, Foucault and Arendt’s ‘banality of evil’ as great warnings to us all in relation to the mechanisms of bureaucracy in work and capitalism – a warning we might heed in the union. It is my hope to keep alive a therapy practice without coercion and available to anyone with the will to partake in it, which is “critical” in the broadest sense.
I would like to help to create a union that is shamelessly political and social, that whilst recognising the importance of aiding particular grievances, I am more interested in the political body of the collective and how this collective can create the solidarity necessary for the kind of critical therapies that we desperately need.
Nominated by Richard Bagnall-Oakeley
Seconded by Philippa Marx
I have come to see a Union for Psychotherapists and Counsellors as an important protective, guiding, critiquing and challenging voice for our profession, alongside and with the individuals who make up this profession and for the diverse human beings that we are. I see this as a practical and real function that is intertwined with the theoretical and ethical complexities of our professions as well as our very humanity. My particular concerns are in the direction government is taking with austerity and economically driven policies that impede how we care for each other.
I trained as an Integrative Child Psychotherapist at the Institute of Arts in Therapy and Education (2005-9). I have a strong cross-over interest with the arts/creativity, having originally studied both History of Art and Fine Art. My passion and focus is for the direct experience of helping children to grow emotionally. I have worked as a nanny, running Sure Start classes, nursery teacher, baby massage instructor, secretary and chair for an after school care scheme, with families in an acute psychiatric setting and with learning disabilities. Currently, I work as a School Counsellor (10 years) and in private practice (7 years). I see a world that is changing rapidly, and I consider it a privilege to work with children and families of differing configurations and complexities, who are also struggling with these changes. I would like to see a very different type of politics in this country that is much more representative of gender, ethnic and cultural diversity. And I would like to see this widening of diversity in our profession too.
I am putting myself forward for PCU committee with my specialist interest in children and families, and my desire to contribute individually and with others towards a profession that will involve itself in policies that affect our profession and how we care for each other as a society within this world.
Nominated by Nick Totton
Seconded by Kate O’Halloran
I live in the north west of the country and I would hope to try and build our base in this area. As a therapist I am currently working as a counsellor at a doctor’s surgery and deliver play therapy in a primary school setting.
I am a founder member of the union and served on the committee from its inception. My experience of union work stems from my years as a Fire Brigade Union official. From my trade union work I can bring some negotiation skills, lay advocacy and a good understanding of organising a union to meet its aims. I have a reasonable understanding of the thinking and way management approach issues in the workplace, which is helpful in achieving positive outcomes for individual members. In my experience most individual cases and work issues require a compromise of some description.
I would like to continue to add my support and contribution to the development of the union in terms of its policies, growth and influence with the professional bodies by continuing on the committee.
Posted in Notices by the Interim Committee