A Christian counsellor who specialises in helping people with unwanted feelings of same-sex attraction has been “hounded out” of his professional body, the British Psychodrama Association (BPA).
Under the direction of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) the BPA this week removed Dr Mike Davidson from the psychotherapists’ register of trainee professional membership.
Mike has counselled for six years without professional objection and is recognised as an intelligent, empathetic and caring therapist.
But his professional bodies have removed his membership on the basis of two radio interviews he gave with the BBC in January 2012. During the interviews Mike carefully explained his evidence-backed opinions but this was followed by a letter from the chair of the BPA, telling him that his trainee membership was revoked with immediate effect pending investigation. This happened without Mike being given any right of explanation or defence.
The BPA tried him against a set of so-called “Ethical Principles” of the UKCP. These principles say: “It is not a sufficient defence for a therapist to argue that ... they were acting in the client’s best interests, or ... autonomy, as offering such therapy would be ... reinforcing their externalised and internalised oppression.”
So if someone asks a therapist for help to reduce unwanted same-sex attractions, they will be told that they are suffering from oppression and that it is unethical for a therapist to do what they ask.
Dr Di Hodgson, Chair of the UKCP’s Diversity, Equalities and Social Responsibility Committee, said on the BBC recently that the UKCP has “taken a view in a way which is regardless of the scientific findings” and that “whether or not something works doesn’t mean that it is ethical ...”
Dermot O’Callaghan, a trustee of Core Issues Trust, a trust established by Dr Davidson, commented:
“…Mike’s professional life has been ruined by ideology even though he has done nothing wrong.
“They have ruined the life of a caring and courageous counsellor. It is not that a bad therapist has been tried against good ethical principles; rather, a good man has been tried against bad principles.”
Please pray for Mike at this time. His case is supported by the Christian Legal Centre.
Core Issues Trust has helpfully posted some useful documents relevant to Mike's case. Just click on the links below to view them:
British Psychodrama Association Appeal Panel Outcome (5 October 2013)
“Defence of Practice” Document submitted as one of 31 documents (No response)
UKCP Guidance on the Practice of Psychological Therapies that Pathologise and/or Seek to Eliminate or Reduce Same Sex Attraction (word doc)