State Legislation

What Can You Do Right Now

The first thing to remember is that Government has significant impact on every aspect of your life. Not only do legislative and regulatory actions impact your profession, they also impact your everyday life. It is critical that you are involved in the process to ensure that any changes don't negatively impact your profession and the people you serve. Always remember that the most powerful voice in government is yours. As a constituent, you have the standing and the right to discuss important issues with your elected officials.

Take a moment to reach out to your legislators today. Send them an email or a letter introducing yourself and your involvement in the association. Offer to be a resource to them on issues. Give them your contact information and suggest an opportunity to visit with them before the session begins. Visiting with a legislator prior to session is one of the most effective ways to establish a relationship. Invite one of your colleagues in your area to come along on the visit. There is strength in numbers. A little effort goes a long way.

 Finally, please be sure you are registered to vote. Most legislators keep a list of all registered voters in their district. It is important that they know you are a registered voter in their district. Of course you don't have to live in their district to visit with them. Sometimes your office may be located in their district or you may live in a metropolitan area and be just outside their district. It is still important that you are a registered voter.


Louisiana 2021 Legislative Session                                       (April)
LCA Government Relations Committee Update for all LCA members!
Are you aware of two bills currently filed with the Louisiana State Legislature this session seeking to restrict access to gender-affirming care for minors?
LCA supports access to care for all Louisianans and has joined with a growing number of healthcare providers, advocacy groups, and healthcare associations by signing an open letter (created by Louisiana Trans Advocates) to the House and Senate Health & Welfare Committees specifically opposing HB 575 and SB 104. You can see our organization listed here at the bottom of the letter:
If you would like to sign as individual provider and/or your employer wants to sign as an organization, use the following link:
SAIGE-LA, the LCA division , is requesting that all LCA members take this moment to support the access of care for all of the citizens of Louisiana!

May 4

The first of the youth gender-related bills (SB 104 by Sen. Fesi related to access to care for transgender youth) was heard in the Senate Health & Welfare Committee last week and was voluntarily deferred, meaning the author pulled the bill back and may rework it to bring again at a later time. 400+ healthcare providers came to the Capitol to oppose the bill and provide testimony. Thank you to Cathleen Castle who provided testimony in the committee along with so many others! This week, Rep. Beryl Amedee's HB 542 ("Fairness in Women's Sports Act") will be heard in committee. The companion bill, SB 156 by Sen. Beth Mizell was reported favorably from committee last week and set to appear on the Senate Floor for debate at any time. One of the gender-related bills (HB 575 by Rep. Firment) was removed from the agenda for today's meeting. We are closely monitoring this series of bills and will keep you updated.
Another concerning bill (HB 564 by Rep. Garofalo) was heard in committee last week. Testimony went on for over 5 hours, and, ultimately, the author voluntarily deferred the bill. Rep. Garofalo has received major backlash on this bill, with the Louisiana Legislative Black Caucus requesting the Speaker of the House remove him as Chair of the Education Committee. The Speaker has not yet responded to the request.


Legislative Update: Sine Die - That's a Wrap
for the 2019 Legislative Session
The 2019 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature has adjourned Sine Die, and we have reached the end of the 60 day event. As legislators head back home to their districts and whatever their futures hold, we wanted to update you on a few of the highlights of the session. Please see below.
We now turn from legislative season to elections season. The entire House of Representatives, Louisiana State Senate and all Louisiana Statewide Officials are up for reelection this Fall. We will have one of the largest turnover in legislators in history. It will be incumbent upon each of us to support our friends and to become involved in legislative races of importance. 
If you ever have any questions or concerns about legislative issues, please reach out to us at or (225) 767-7640.  


HB 53 by Rep. Moss
Provides relative to suicide prevention in schools.
8/1/19 Effective
HB 193 by Rep. Bacala
Revises procedures relative to students investigated for threats of violence or terrorism.
6/5/19 Enrolled
HB 211 by Rep. Horton
Provides relative to Medicaid coverage of certain behavioral health services.
6/4/19 Enrolled
HB 302 by Rep. Bouie
Enacts the Louisiana Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
5/8/19 Involuntarily Deferred House Labor and Industrial Relations
HB 320 by Rep. Simon
Provides for access to applied behavior analysis providers in schools.
8/1/19 Effective
HB 505 by Rep. Coussan
Provides relative to parenting education programs and child custody.
5/30/19 Enrolled
HB 541 by Rep. Cox
Provides relative to the Post-Conviction Veterans Mentor Program.
5/7/19 Voluntarily Deferred in Committee House Administration of Criminal Justice
HR 113 by Rep. Pat Smith
Commends the Louisiana Counseling Association and designates May 9, 2019, as Louisiana Counseling Association Day at the state capitol.
5/7/2019 Enrolled
SB 29 by Sen. Cortez
Provides relative to professional and occupational licensing boards and commissions.
5/31/19 Enrolled
SB 78 by Sen. Martiny
Provides relative to behavioral health services provided to students.
5/30/19 Returned to the calendar - subject to call
SB 120 by Sen. Milkovich
Provides relative to bullying.
4/17/2019 Involuntarily Deferred Senate Education
SB 137 by Sen. Bishop
Provides relative to student discipline.
3/28/2019 Referred to Senate Committee on Education
SB 187 by Sen. Milkovich
Provides relative to the conduct of adjudication hearings involving and the re-creation of certain state boards and commissions which issue licenses, permits, or certificates.
5/8/2019 Involuntarily deferred in Senate Committee on Commerce
SB 194 by Sen. Morrish
Provides for development of a statewide framework for dual enrollment.
5/14/19 Substituted by SB 243
SB 243 by Sen. Morrish
Creates the Dual Enrollment Framework Task Force.
6/4/19 Senate concurred in House amendments (Vote: Y: 37/N: 0)
SR 63 by Sen. Troy Carter
Designates May 9, 2019, as Louisiana Counseling Association Day at the capitol.
4/25/2019 Enrolled in the Senate


The 2018 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature will convene at noon on Monday, March 12, 2018. Legislators are returning to the State Capitol just days after the conclusion of the First Extraordinary (Special) Session of 2018. This Session marks the 9th time legislators are headed to the Capitol since the current term started in January 2016. According to the Louisiana Constitution, the Session is of general subject matter in even-numbered years. Typically, this means a larger number of bills are filed on a wide range of topics and fields. This year’s bill count is low, but we still expect a fast-paced Session as legislators look ahead to major budget battles to come. 


Please take a moment to reach out to your legislators to wish them luck in the Regular Session, thank them for serving, and offer yourself as a resource in issues related to our profession. If you don’t know your legislators, use the link below to find your State Representative and State Senator.



HB 145, Cox

Provides limitations on diagnosing of the disorder commonly known as Munchausen syndrome by proxy and on initiation of child welfare proceedings.

 HB 148, Falconer

Provides for implementation of the zero suicide initiative and a state suicide prevention plan.

HB 154, Magee

Provides relative to access to certain information for purposes of child support enforcement.

Scheduled for House Health & Welfare Committee hearing on March 14, 2018 at 9:00 am

 HB 158, Foil

Provides relative to admissions to treatment facilities under an emergency certificate.

 HB 195, Mack

Provides relative to probation and the defendant's eligibility to earn compliance credits or early termination.

 HB 271, Garofalo

Provides for the carrying of a concealed handgun on school property by certain teachers or administrators.

 HB 387, Edmonds

Revises the Parents' Bill of Rights for Public Schools.

 HB 440, Hodges

Expands DPS&C's substance abuse probation program to include treatment for mental health issues.

 HB 484, Talbot

Provides for a proposition election to authorize fantasy sports contests in Louisiana.

 HB 488, Amedee

Provides relative to the mandatory reporting of certain crimes of sexual abuse of a minor.

 HB 511, Bacala

Requires a mental health evaluation of persons who threaten public safety or physical harm to other persons.

 HB 581, Leger

Provides relative to fuel sales at qualified truck stop facilities as relates to video draw poker devices.

 HB 647, Norton

Requires the La. Department of Health to implement the Medicaid health home option for persons with serious mental illness.

 SB  24, Mills

Provides relative to social work practice.

 SB  40, Mills

Provides relative to health profession licensing board membership.

 B  66, Claitor

Provides relative to admission to treatment facility for mental illness pursuant to emergency certificate.

 SB 197, Peacock

Provides relative to certain limitation on recovery of medical claims.

 SB 260, Milkovich

Provides relative to disciplinary hearings by professional and occupational licensing boards and commissions.

 SB 306, Barrow

Provides relative to Assistive Outpatient Treatment.

 SB 345, Donahue

Provides relative to school master plans for supporting student


 WEEK 2:

Legislative Update :: Week Two at the Capitol
We are headed into the second week of the 2018 Regular Legislative Session. Last week was fairly busy for a first week, with all committees meeting to hear non-controversial legislation. The Governor and legislative leadership have encouraged legislators to move quickly through this Session, as the bill count is historically low. If they are able to adjourn in mid-May, the Governor will immediately call a Second Special Session, which will run through the original end-date of the Regular Session. The quick start in the first week shows that legislators are working to meet this request. 
Please stay tuned, as legislators are working very quickly through legislation. We will continue to keep you updated throughout the process. 



2017:   All LCA members are urged to take action immediately so that the very important SB 38 will be approved by our state legislature.  The bill will be heard by the Senate Health and Welfare Committee probably NEXT WEEK!


This week we need you to contact the members of this committee by phone, email, or posted letter.  Your voice will make the difference in our success.  In the Town Hall Meetings recently held statewide, the rationale for this bill was discussed.  In summary, the bill would remove the Serious Mental Illness language from the Mental Health Counseling law that is negatively impacting LPCs, PLPCs, and the clients we serve.  The names and contact information for the Senate Health and Welfare Committee can be accessed by clicking this link:


Approval of the bill by this committee is the first step in reaching passage.  We need you to be part of the strong grassroots effort that is underway through LCA.  Please take a few minutes TODAY to contact these senators.  You are encouraged to use the following template for your email, letter, or phone call:

 Talking points:

Month, Day, Year  

The Honorable (Legislators first and last name


RE: Senate Bill 38 by Senator J. P. Morrell

Dear Senator [Last name]:

My name is [your first and last name] and I am a [Licensed Professional Counselor/Provisional Licensed Professional Counselor/LCA member/Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist,/Provisional Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist] [who resides in your district, if applicable]  I am [writing/calling] to let you know that I am in support of SB 38 authored by Senator J. P. Morrell. The bill will remove the “serious mental illness” language from the Mental Health Counselors Act which governs my professional practice. I am in favor of this bill because

• The serious mental illness language currently limits the public’s access to mental health services, especially for the uninsured and those in rural areas that may lack ready access to medical care.

• The requirement of the current law to consult/collaborate with medical practitioners regardless of the wishes of the client has not improved the quality of client care in Louisiana.

• LPCs and LMFTs will continue to refer clients whose clinical needs fall outside the limits of our training and expertise as has always been required by our Ethical Code and Code of Conduct.

[If you have one, include a personal story. Tell your legislator why the issue is important to you and how it affects you personally and/or professionally.] For these reasons, I am asking you to vote for SB 38.

 Please contact me if you have any questions. Thank you for your support!



Print your name Street address

City, State, Zip code

June, 2017

SB 38 has passed both the Senate and the House.  It now awaits the signature of Gov. Edwards.

So that readers will better understand the changes that have been made to the Mental Health Law, the following document has been  prepared.

 RS 37 Mental Health Counselors - SB 38 final 6-2-17.pdf








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