The election process took place in October and early November and the results were announced on Monday. New chair is going to be Andrew Samuels who won by a vast majority of 66%. The second candidate, Carmen Joanne Ablack, got 34%. As you can see, with a margin of 2 to 1 Andrew can call his a real victory.
According to Electoral Reform Services, the independent charity commissioned to administer the voting, the turnout was "tremendous", with almost 48% of registrants voting.
It appears that voters felt that something important was at stake, and decided to do their bit.
With the plans for statutory regulation of the various talking therapies on their way, and the consultation period with the HPC just over, the two main professional organisations for psychotherapists were not in agreement between themselves. One of them, the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) has already been quite critical of HPC and its plans; UKCP, on the other hand, has been ambivalent, to say the least. Although many registrants of UKCP were very clearly against HPC (I include myself here), UKCP was limiting itself to marginal comments and suggestions.
Some of us were against what was happening but we did not have a voice, within UKCP, and just did not know how many or how committed we were.
The two candidates for the post of the chair held opposite views. For Andrew Samuels opposition to the proposed plans was the single most crucial and urgent issue for UKCP, while the matter was not so high up in Carmen Ablack's agenda.
That's why the election results are so reassuring. It appears that many UKCP registrants understood that this was not the time to remain uninvolved, that the time for action had come.
The tremendous turnover of 48% (3189 registrants out of an electoral body of 6714 eligible voters) and the vast number of votes won by Andrew Samuels (2108 of 3189, or 66%) show that the "new" UKCP board will be much more active in voicing the concerns of all those who believe that statutory regulation by HCP is going to harm our professions and our practices.
A new wind is blowing.
The press release by the UKCP is here.