The AMTA – MN government relations committee and the ALMT have confirmed their commitment to keep all massage therapists in Minnesota updated on a regular basis on legislative activities.
AMTA – MN Seeking Licensure From Lawmakers – Not Voluntary Registration
In 2016, the American Massage Therapy Association – Minnesota chapter and a coalition of organizations introduced legislation which called for voluntary registration of massage and bodywork therapists. This past effort hoped to get massage and bodywork therapists to place their name on a registry to protect their title.
After careful review of this past effort, as well as, a survey of massage and bodywork therapists, in Minnesota, it has been determined that full licensure of massage and bodywork therapists better protects the public and provides a more consistent and superior form of regulation. The licensure bill is in the final stages of drafting and review. This licensure bill will bring Minnesota massage and bodywork therapists into the same regulatory structure of our neighboring states, as well as, 46 other states.
4 Reasons State Licensure for Massage Therapy is a MUST:
- Massage therapy is a legitimate professional career. When we pass statewide registration it allows for the practice of massage therapy to be seen as what it is: a professional allied health practice.
- Reduction of sex trafficking and sex crimes that hide using the term “massage” as their practice will be shut down and exposed.
- Visibility and easier access for the people of Minnesota to be able to find and locate a professional massage therapist gives us more choice, power and safety as consumers.
- Minnesota is one of the top states in the health care industry and we need to demonstrate an example for others to follow by being in compliance with safety laws to keep our practices up-to-date and current.
The Government Relations committee of the American Massage Therapy Association – Minnesota Chapter has been working very hard on a plan to introduce legislation for licensing massage therapists in the state of Minnesota. The first part of that plan is to refine the bill by drafting changes to address the concerns of all of the various interest groups both within our community and those outside of our community who have a stake in this effort. We have been distributing bill drafts to these various groups since February and asking for comments, redrafting and sending out new versions. Once we have a version that looks like it is getting close to a final version, we will be sending it to the full membership and posting it on our website.
In addition to refining the bill, we are working hard to put together our grass roots communication plan for how best to keep you fully informed as the bill is introduced and progresses through the process as well as helping you to get involved in advocating for the legislation with your House and Senate members. As you know, the bill will not be able to pass unless legislators hear from you. If you wish to be involved in helping with our grass roots activism on this issue, please contact Susan Tietjen at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Finally, it is important for you to know that we have been closely monitoring press activities as it relates to massage therapy and specifically those involving a particular situation that occurred in Roseville a few months ago. The story originally broke last fall in the Minneapolis Star Tribune and described a situation where a person reported being sexually assaulted by a massage therapist. The therapist was arrested and is currently out on bail. We were contacted by a TV news station about doing a follow up story on this a couple of weeks ago. We were interviewed for the story and you can view it here. One other news outlet (News 5) also did a story on this last week. We believe this situation illustrates the need for statewide licensure.