My name is Robert A. Grigore, MCP, RCC #12316. I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor, Certified EMDR Therapist and Approved EMDR Consultant. I am a published author on EMDR, as well as the owner of Grigore Counselling. I have been featured in many different forms of media related to counselling and EMDR. You are the most important person in the world right at this second, because you have the power to help us save the lives of millions. I thank you for considering this petition. Please read on to see what's at stake and how you can help. After the COVID-19 curve has been flattened, there WILL be a second curve that MUST be flattened: The Post-Traumatic Curve.
BOTTOM LINE: People are going to NEED trauma-informed psychotherapists to be available immediately to intervene to lower the post-traumatic impact of COVID-19.
- There are almost 8 BILLION people on Earth.
- Every. Single. One. Of. Us. Are experiencing a shared trauma.
- Research shows that after experiencing a traumatic event, anywhere from 1-9% of survivors are likely to develop PTSD (that means approximately 80 Million to 720 Million!!!)
- Rates and severity of PTSD symptoms increase with the duration of a trauma - especially when there are other risk factors involved (financial pressures, domestic violence, other mental health conditions like depression, anxiety, bi-polar, personality disorders, etc.).
: Licensing and legal restrictions prevent qualified mental health professionals from working with a client who resides outside of the province/state/territory that they are registered to work within.
Not just any therapist will be a good fit for everyone. Psychotherapy is a highly personal and vulnerable undertaking that requires the right relationship, and people should be allowed to get the help they need from the licensed therapist they want to work with - regardless of where the therapist is located or which governing body the therapist belongs to.
I have had many clients reach out to me over the years from all over the world and unless they are able to fly out to work with me in-person, I have to say "no" to them. Many of these individuals lived in places where there was no viable alternative option for treatment.
Over the years in my practice, I have become convinced that every single person has experienced trauma. I haven't met a single person that "escaped childhood unscathed." The events of COVID-19 are very triggering for people because of the powerlessness we feel, the loss many of us undergo (loss of job or income, independence, etc.), the fear and uncertainty of the future, as well as the stress involved in living in (essentially) non-consensual isolation with others (even if they are family). The rates of domestic violence are likely to go up (including sexual abuse of minors as well as spouses), as will rates of alcohol and substance abuse, and suicide rates. This couldn't be MORE serious.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the numbers of individuals and their families who NEED us are going up, and even though there are many of us who have taken to conducting our practice online, we can face retaliation from our regulatory bodies, fines, and imprisonment if we provide (what could be) LIFE-SAVING psychotherapy to someone who lives outside of our professional boundaries. SOLUTION
: We need to lobby the World Health Organization (WHO), right now to enact a lifting of the restrictions for licensed psychotherapists
(in good-standing with their regulatory bodies), to provide psychotherapy to anyone who requests it, regardless of where they are in the world.
Naturally, all other behavioural conduct should fall within the guidelines of the therapist's regulating body as well as the American Psychological Association. Should any discrepancies exist between the two, the APA's ethical code should be used and followed.
Provincial/state and federal governments should allow the administration of psychotherapy to be considered as a special service and allow the psychotherapist to conduct psychotherapy online without cause for ethical or legal recourse.
Once the pandemic is over, the licensing restriction concerning location should remain lifted, and allow licensed psychotherapists to provide either online or in-person therapy as long as they are abiding by the ethical guidelines set forth by their regulatory body and the APA. RESULTS
: By intervening sooner rather than later, we can decrease the number of people who will go on to develop PTSD-like symptoms (many people can go 6 months before they develop "full PTSD", and many more display some symptoms of PTSD but do not meet the full diagnosis). This will flatten the most important curve after the COVID-19 curve.
People and their mental health are what drive the economy. Healthy-minded people will get us back on track faster, and when we're not responding to the traumatic stressors of COVID-19, we can utilize creative ways of helping the citizens of this planet utilize the pearls that actually came out of a global threat (like working together for a shared goal).
Your signature will get us one step closer to putting this in front of the WHO, and the more signatures we have the higher the likelihood of them taking this matter seriously!! Please help us help our clients!! (They could be your friend, your spouse, your co-worker, family member, or even you!!)
With Care and Respect,
Robert A. Grigore, MCP, RCC# 12316
PS: If you feel so inclined, please join our Facebook Group: FLATTEN the NEXT Curve.