From: C’Rai Weeden Shannon, M.A., CCC-SLP, MSHA Interim President
Hello MSHA Community,
We are moving into the fall; the season of change. The year 2020 has thrust countless shifts upon us. Due to COVID-19, many of us have transitioned to providing services via telepractice - attending virtual staff meetings, training, professional development events and even social events. In addition, those of us that are working in-person are now wearing PPE. There are new safety protocols that must be followed to ensure the health and safety of ourselves and our clients. We have made changes in how we are communicating, as well as adjusting to navigating in the workplace and in public with social distancing, masks, etc. MSHA has been, and will continue to be here to address those changes and any challenges that come with it head on. We will provide you with the necessary training or connections that are needed so that you can be effective in your work. For example, in May we provided a week of telepractice-focused webinars to support this new need for our clinicians and clients.
MSHA has also undergone changes. In July 2020, I was nominated and voted into the role of Interim President, a position that I take on with immense gratitude and honor. As Interim President of MSHA, I am committed to keeping you informed and connecting you to our ongoing work and actions. The MSHA Executive Board is actively advocating for your needs, as well as supporting the clients and communities we serve.
Below you will find a summary of MSHA’s actions during the months of July and August:
- MSHA Listening Session and Community Forum on Racism in CSD
Following the murder of George Floyd, MSHA committed to doing our part to dismantle racism. In July, a joint subcommittee of the MSHA Board of Directors and the MSHA Multicultural Affairs Committee held a listening session and community forum focused on racism in our fields. At this forum, we provided a safe space for students, clinicians and faculty to share their past experiences with racism and microaggressions. We also provided information about allyship and trauma-informed care.
As detailed in the MSHA statement “Our Commitment to Action”, MSHA is committed to holding formal and informal listening and learning events focused on anti-racism in our field as well as ethical, culturally and linguistically appropriate service delivery to all of our clients. Resources from the listening session have been compiled and can be accessed at this link.
- MSHA Board Reviews the Maryland Board of Examiners for Audiologists, Hearing Aid Dispensers & Speech-Language Pathologists Current Regulations
In response to the Board of Examiners invitation, the MSHA Executive Board reviewed the current regulations as it pertains to our practitioners. The MSHA Board has recommended review, modifications, or further explanation regarding the following regulations and topics.
- MSHA Executive Board Updates our By-Laws
In August of 2020, our Executive Board met to make updates to our by-laws for clarity and equity.
In addition to a summer of change, we have exciting upcoming events and ways that you can be involved with MSHA. Please see below for information about Clinical Connections and various opportunities for engagement.
- Clinical Connections
MSHA will host our first virtual Clinical Connections Conference on October 16, 2020. Dr. Eric Raj, Ph.D., CCC-SLP will present creative ideas using iPad apps in therapy. He will provide strategies for in-person services as well as adaptations for use with teletherapy. Registration for the Clinical Connections Conference is open now.
- We Invite You to Get Involved
MSHA has a number of ways that you can get involved! Contact Lisa, our Association Administrator, at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about the role that fits you best! We are actively seeking volunteers to support the following committees and roles:
- Public Policy Committee
- Multicultural Affairs Committee
- Supporting the Continuing Education Administrator
- Website Content ContributionsConsider running for a position on the Executive Board
- Joining MSHA and Membership Renewal
The Maryland Speech-Language-Hearing Association is the
professional association in the state of Maryland representing the needs of speech-language pathologists and audiologists. If you are not currently a member, we invite you to join MSHA now! Renewal for existing members will open in September 2020.
Your input is valued! I encourage you to contact MSHA to provide feedback on any of the above mentioned matters or other topics that concern our profession, clients, and/or the community we serve.
C’Rai Weeden Shannon, M.A., CCC-SLP
MSHA Interim President