MLN Vol.5.No.3

Massage Law Newsletter

Vol. 5, No.3                                      ISSN 1073-5461                                     December 1998

WHY DON'T PEOPLE, WHO PROMOTE SENATE BILL 1171, 

ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT THAT BILL?

IF THEY DON'T ANSWER THE QUESTIONS, WHY ARE THEY PROMOTING THE BILL?

Albert Schatz, Ph.D.

Where all men think alike, no man thinks very much. - Walter Lippmann

'It can't happen here' is always wrong: a dictatorship can happen anywhere. - Karl Popper

WHY IS LICENSURE NEEDED TO

ASSURE PROFESSIONALISM?

To: Pamela L. Barbato

Your article -  A Vote for  Licensure in the December, 1997, issue of The Balanced Body (the AMTA Pennsylvania Chapter Newsletter) includes the following statement:

"I truly believe in Licensure because it promotes the highest degree of professionalism for practitioners, and I feel a state license is the most important credential that protects the public from those who have very little training, improper training, or no training at all."

I would appreciate it if you would  provide answers to the following questions about your above-mentioned statement. Also, please give me permission, in writing, to publish your reply to this inquiry in the Massage Law Newsletter. Thank you.

1. What is the "professionalism" to which you refer? Please define it.

2. What do you mean by the "degree of professionalism"?

3. How does the "highest degree of  professionalism" differ from lower degrees of  "professionalism"?

4. How do you measure "professionalism" objectively (quantitatively)? If you can't measure it quantitatively, how do you know what the "highest degree of professionalism" is?

5. What well-documented research justifies your allegation that "licensure ... promotes the highest degree of professionalism for practitioners"?

6. What well-documented evidence reveals that there is more of that "highest degree of professionalism" in states with licensure than in states without licensure?

With respect to the alleged need to protect the public from "those who have very little training, improper training, or no training at all," would you please provide the following information:

1.  Specifically, why (for what reasons) does the public need to be protected from "those who have very little training, improper training, or no training at all"?

2. What well-documented evidence do you have that "those who have very little training, improper training, or no training at all" have harmed people?

3. What is the nature of the harm that has occurred, and how serious has it been?

4. What research provides well-documented evidence that states with licensure provide the public with more of the protection, to which you refer, than states without licensure provide?

WHAT BENEFITS DOES SENATE BILL 1171 PROVIDE, AND FOR WHOM?

To: Nancy Porambo

Your article -  A Proud Volunteer (n the December, 1997, issue of The Balanced Body (the AMTA Pennsylvania Chapter Newsletter) alleges that Pennsylvania  Senate Bill 1171 is needed for various reasons.

I would appreciate it if you would provide answers to the following questions about statements in your article, from which I quote. Also, please give me permission, in writing, to publish your reply to this inquiry in the Massage Law Newsletter. Thank you.

Why is  Senate Bill 1171 needed to

"preserve the future of" your "profession"?

1. Hasn't your profession not only survived, but actually flourished in Pennsylvania, without state regulation?

2. If it has, why does it now need Senate Bill 1171 to "preserve" its "future"?

3. Is your profession in danger of becoming extinct in Pennsylvania? If so, why?

4, If your profession is not in danger of becoming extinct, why does it now need licensure to "preserve" its "future"?

5. In what states, that do not have licensure, has your profession  become extinct?

Why is Senate Bill 1171 needed to

 "protect "your "profession from

 unscrupulous practice"?

1. What unscrupulous practice are you talking about? Please define it.

2. How widespread and how serious is that unscrupulous practice in Pennsylvania? How many well-documented cases of that unscrupulous practice occurred in Pennsylvania during the five year period preceding the introduction of Senate Bill 1171 in the Senate in October, 1997?

3. To what extent and in what ways did those well-documented cases of that unscrupulous practice adversely affect your profession and  the public?

4. What well-documented evidence is there that Senate Bill 1171, if enacted, will "protect" your "profession" from that unscrupulous practice?

5. To what extent does that unscrupulous practice occur in states which regulate massage and in states which do not regulate massage.

6. What adverse effects has that unscrupulous practice produced in those other states?

Why is  Senate Bill 1171 needed to

"establish educational guidelines for" your "profession?

1. Why do you want Senate Bill 1171 to establish educational  guidelines for your profession?2. Why doesn't your profession establish self-regulation and define its educational guidelines? That's what the Canadian Provinces of Ontario and British Columbia have done.

 Why is  Senate Bill 1171 needed to

"define the scope of practice"

of  your profession?

1. Why does your profession want Senate Bill 1171 to establish its scope of practice?

2. Why doesn't your profession define its scope of practice for its members? AMTA has defined the scope of practice for its members without having any state do that.

Why is  Senate Bill 1171 needed for

"recognition of somatic practices, massage

therapy, and reflexology as health

care practices"?

What well-documented evidence do you  have that somatic practices, massage therapy, and reflexology are not presently recognized as health care practices?

How would  Senate Bill 1171 "protect

the interests of the therapists"?

1. What are the interests of the therapists to which you refer?

2. Do you want Senate Bill 1171 to provide monopoly control which would "protect the interests of the therapists" by eliminating competition, so that the therapists would make more money?

3.  If that's not the reason, what is?

WHY DOES REFLEXOLOGY NEED

A  200-HOUR TRAINING?

Unanswered questions

about reflexology

Why does Senate Bill 1171 require 4,900% MORE HOURS OF TRAINING for reflexology, than the  4-hour mini-workshop which Judy Dobbs offers?

Judy Dobbs is President of the Pennsylvania Reflexology Association. This Association was affiliated with the Pennsylvania Licensure Coalition that promoted licensure and wrote Senate Bill 1171.

Judy Dobbs did not reply to our inquiry in March, 1998, in which we requested the following information:

1. What well-documented information reveals that reflexologists have harmed people?

2. Why does Pennsylvania Senate Bill 1171 require a 200-hour training for reflexology?

200 hours of training

aren't needed for reflexology

In  April, 1998, I reported that people are certified in reflexology after taking a 7-hour workshop. Children and church parishioners learn reflexology in an hour or less. And parents  learn reflexology from books.

I have found no reports of harm caused by reflexology. On the contrary, one authority described reflexology as "harmless."

You can learn reflexology

in Philadelphia in only a few hours

The Sept./Oct./Nov./Dec. 1998 issue of the Mt. Airy Learning Tree lists a 4-hour mini-workshop on Foot and Hand Reflexology, offered by Judy Dobbs, in September and November of 1998.

The Mt. Airy Learning Tree is an organization, in the Mt Airy section of Philadelphia, which arranges workshops, lectures, and other activities for the public. The description of Judy Dobbs' 4-hour mini-workshop appears as follows:

"Foot and Hand Reflexology.  A 4,000-year-old Egyptian method of healing through points on the hands and feet can help you take control of your aches and pains,

"This mini-workshop will introduce you to easy, basic techniques to use on yourself, family, and friends. Find points that have helped other relieve themselves of headaches, back pain, nervousness and a variety of other common complaints.

"Judy Dobbs,  a resident of Mt. Airy with over twenty yeas experience, is President of the Pennsylvania Reflexology Association.

"A. Sunday 1:30 - 5:30, Sept. 2

"B. Sunday 1:30 - 5:30. Nov. 2

"Mt. Airy Presbyterian Church ......... $50.00"

WHO WANTS STATE REGULATION OF MASSAGE, AND WHY?

Consumer protection agencies have never lobbied for state regulation of massage.

If  you follow the money trail, you see that, special interest groups promote state regulation  because it provides them with monopoly control.

People who allege that regulation is  needed for one reason or another, have not provided well-documented evidence to justify the alleged need.

If they have such well-documented evidence, why don't they publish it ?

It is sufficient that a citizen enjoy his freedom. He isn't required to justify it. History does that for him. - Judge James C. Hill

Reference  

Schatz, A. Massage should be deregulated because it does not cause harm. Massage Law Newsletter. 5(2):1-18, 1998.

Schatz, A. Follow the money trail to find out why scare tactics tell us secular massage therapy is harmful. Journal of Spiritual Bodywork. Special Issue No. 4. pages 1-14. 1997.

Schatz, A., Do state massage laws and local massage ordinances violate U.S. constitutional law, U.S. Supreme Court Decisions, and the United Nations'  International Bill of Human Rights? Massage Law Newsletter. 4(3):1-6. 1998.

Schatz, A. Does PA Senate Bill 1171 violate laws that protect freedom of speech and freedom of the press? Prohibit discrimination and arbitrary governmental interference> Prohibit restraint of trade, monopolies, and unfair trade practices? Massage Law Newsletter. 4(2):1-3. 1998. 

Schatz, A., and Brewster, M. The corporatization of massage. An economic perspective. Massage Law Newsletter. 2(2):1-10. 1997.

Schatz, A.  Senate Bill 1171's 200-hour training for reflexology is absurd because: People are certified as reflexologists after taking a one-day (7-hour) workshop. Children and church parishioners learn reflexology in an hour or less. And parents can learn reflexology from books. Massage Law Newsletter 3(4):1-2. 1998.

Schatz, A. Pennsylvania Senate Bill 1171 is unreal. Memo to Judy Dobbs. Massage Law Newsletter. 3(2):1-2. 1998

Answers to questions about Scope of Practice. Hands On. (AMTA newsletter). 14(3):6. May/June 1998.

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