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Dear Section I Member,

I am writing to up-date you on Section I efforts at refining its By-laws to better reflect the realities of the Section and to inaugurate some of the changes promised following board discussions, and which were summarised in an end-of-the-year letter from Past-President Allan Scholom, PhD and myself. 

Attached, you will find the proposed revisions to the By-laws of the Section, which have been passed by our Board of Directors.  You will note from the start that we propose to change the name of the Section to better reflect its Mission, as the only one primarily devoted to the preservation and development of adult psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy [also at the top of this letter].  This announces that Section I continues to represent pluralism and innovation in psychoanalytic theory and practice, as well as paradigmatic diversity, in achieving its Mission.  Thus, the uniqueness of the Section is unambiguously amplified from the start.

As previously noted, at our last Board meeting in October, we agreed to create an Affiliate category, Inter-disciplinary category, International category, and a Student category of membership that will allow educators, researchers, scholars, early career professionals and students to become members.  This is in response to our ageing and declining membership which is reflective of the field in general. As noted in our original letter, the Section has gone from a high of around 700 members in the 1990s when the Section was THE organisational home for psychologists to approximately 175 today.

Broadening the categories for membership and opportunities to participate in the life of the Section permits the Section to reach out and be more inclusive and again claim the high ground for quality treatment for new generations of psychoanalytically-orientated clinicians [and, of course, psychoanalysts!].  Furthermore, this reaffirms the rich and profound legacy of psychoanalysis to which we committed ourselves to transmitting.

This new set of By-Laws also builds upon the efforts of the Division to simplify and make clearer all governing documents, efforts at greater transparency, and opening up opportunities for early career professionals – without, of course, compromising our founding principles.  Please vote!, to renew and recommit to our Section and, of course, to approve the new membership categories. This can stand as one of the legacies we can offer to the field that has provided us with so very much.

Please give a ‘yea’ vote to these proposed By-Laws.

Sincerely yours,

David L Downing, PsyD, ABPP


(c) Copyright 2018 Section I - Psychoanalyst Practitioners of Division 39, American Psychological Association

Psychoanalyst Practitioners

PO Box 41668

Phoenix, AZ  85080

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