Addiction counseling originated in a service vacuum. In the 1960s, mental health professionals (psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers) avoided the substance abuse client population. As the addiction counseling profession grew in size and stature, state associations for addiction counselors became an important component of the profession. Considerable progress has been made in the counseling and addiction counseling professions. Licensed counselor laws exist in nearly all 50 states, and addiction counseling certification is being mandated by more states every year. For many years, the various treatment facilities have operated independently, often competing with each other for much-needed grant funding. However, the growth of state provider associations has fostered productive consortium relationships and supported yearly conferences with training in current practices.

At the present time, state associations offer organization, ...

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