Committee Reports

Council of Representatives Report

Sally Barlow, Ph.D.
Sally Barlow, Ph.D.

Council of Representative Report

As of June 2016 the only thing to report is that Council continues to wait for an updated report from Hoffman et al (promised weeks ago) regarding the inconsistencies as well as possibly left-out information in the original Hoffman report. This original report, as you will no doubt recall, was leaked to the New York Times last July causing a firestorm. The CoR list serve is currently active with denunciations of the original Hoffman report, not least because the members who have been linked to support for torture have not had any opportunity to reclaim their reputations, and most because clearly inconsistencies do exist. Of late a small minority has also called into question the Good Governance Project (GGP) that has taken Council 5 years to bring to pass. As your Council Representative for The Society of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy, I must admit I cannot imagine trying to undo all this hard work on the GGP, which was instigated in order to make the Council and the BOT more nimble. I do however support the move to obtain more answers from Hoffman. I am including a recent email from Jean Maria Arrigo who continues to be our conscience.

COR Colleagues:

The current Div. 42 Board’s vote of no confidence in the APA Board brings to mind the 2012 Div. 42 Board’s historical support of the PENS process and PENS Report.  Div. 42 members on both boards include Armand Cerbone, June Ching, Gerry Koocher, Michael Schwartz, Lori Thomas, Robert Woody, and Jeffrey Younggren.

The Gerwehr emails and PENS listserv constitute documentary evidence for the manipulation of PENS process and the PENS Report, in addition to documentation provided by the Hoffman Report.  In 2012, in advance of the Hoffman Report, the Coalition for an Ethical Psychology had called for annulment of the PENS Report.

The 2012 Div. 42 Board “vehemently oppose[d]” the Coalition’s call for annulment. In the attached letter (URL:, the Div. 42 Board insisted there was nothing wrong with the PENS process nor with APA’s related policies.  The Div. 42 Board particularly enjoined the Coalition to mind the reputation of the APA:

Therefore, our Board makes the following response to your Coalition;

  1. We request that your Coalition stop using the press to spread all negative information about its dissatisfaction with APA. You are harming our practice of psychology by giving false and biased information and therefore, impacting negatively on the ability of people who need psychological services to receive them from ethical and competent psychologists in independent practice.
  2. By distributing copies of this letter, we will ask APA to maintain a vigorous response to any further complaints publicized by the Coalition in the media that may damage our members’ independent practice of psychology. We believe that by giving only a partial story to the media, the Coalition is damaging the entire field of psychology.