Cette page n'est pas disponible en français.

2017-2018 Committee / Comité


Members / Membres

David Bourgeois (Chair)
Fern Stockdale Winder
Kerri Ritchie
Jo-Anne LeFevre
Jacky Chan
Karen Cohen (ex-officio)
Lisa Votta-Bleeker (ex-officio)
Meagan Hatch (ex-officio as Director, Public Affairs and Communications)

Contact the Committee / Contactez le comité


In 2012, the CPA Board voted to revisit the mandate and constitution of its Public Policy Committee (PPC). The Board voted to appoint a PPC that would be charged with a strategic function to recommend policy priorities to the CPA Board. Given the Board’s approval, a task force with relevant experts will be struck to develop any specific policy priority identified. While members of the PPC might serve on a task force if they have the necessary interest and expertise, their mandate will largely be to develop and recommend public policy priorities to the CPA Board and to review and recommend to the Board any work completed by a task force. The PPC is responsible for overseeing the development of identified policy papers and positions and for recommending them for approval by the CPA Board.

It is the vision of the Board that the PPC will have a proactive policy function – identifying those areas of science and practice about which the discipline and profession wants to advance its expertise for the benefit of the public and other stakeholders. Reactive policy work, work that responds to issues or legislation of public concern about which psychology has some expertise, remains largely a function of CPA’s leadership and senior staff. The PPC will be supported by CPA’s CEO and its Manager of Government Relations.


  1. To chart a strategic course for CPA’s proactive policy work by identifying topics for policy development and recommending these to the Board on an annual basis.
  2. Once strategic topics for development are approved by the Board, the PPC will appoint task forces as necessary whose members have the requisite expertise in the defined topic area. Given they have relevant expertise in the topic area, members of the PPC may also sit on a task force.
  3. The PPC should serve as a consultative body to each assigned task force and review their work products and generally ensure that positions developed are based on rigorous scientific findings and in compliance with the Canadian Code of Ethics.
  4. Policy positions developed by a task force appointed by the PPC go to the Board for approval upon the recommendation of the PPC.
  5. In addition to the foregoing proactive policy function, the PPC may be called upon for support and advice to CPA’s leadership in its response to requests by policy makers for scientific and professional psychology input into public policy.
  6. The PPC will work with CPA governance and senior staff in informing the Membership about the policy relevance of psychological research and practice and encouraging Members to participate in informing policy makers about their policy-relevant research. Means of communication may include articles in Psynopsis and workshops and presentations at the CPA Annual Convention.

Committee Membership, Size

  1. The PPC will have no fewer than four members, one of whom will serve as the Chair. 
  2. The CPA Board President will assign a Board liaison to the PPC. 
  3. The PPC and its task forces will be assisted by CPA’s Chief Executive Officer and by CPA’s Manager of Government Relations who will sit as ex-officio members.

Organizational Structure

  1. Chair is appointed by the President of CPA and normally serves as Chair for three years.
  2. The Chair of the PPC, in consultation with the Board liaison and CPA CEO, recruits members of the PPC when vacancies arise. Like all CPA Committees, memberships are submitted to to the CPA Board each fall.
  3. All positions of the PPC are voluntary. Members are normally appointed for a three year term, renewable once with the exception of the Board liaison who will be appointed annually.
  4. Composition of the PPC is made mindful of the range of CPA member constituencies (e.g. area of research expertise, applied specialty, language and geographic distribution).
  5. Task forces are recruited and appointed by the PPC.
  6. Recruitment procedures for task forces must include a call for interest from among CPA Sections whose subject matter expertise coincides with the identified policy topic.


The work of the PPC will be collaborative and generally by consensus. Decisions to recommend a statement, position paper or discussion paper to the CPA Board will be based on endorsement of the majority.

The collective input of CPA ex-officio members and the CPA Board liaison will be important when identifying and recommending policy priorities, assigning task forces and reviewing articulated positions. This is because, in accordance with CPA’s by-laws, only the President and CEO of CPA (or their designates) may officially represent CPA’s policies and positions.

Meetings and Reporting

The PPC will meet at least quarterly. One of these meetings will typically take place in person at CPA’s annual convention and the remaining meetings by conference call. Whenever possible, meetings will be scheduled in sufficient advance of each of the Board’s tri-annual Board meetings so that any work or recommendations from the PPC might be considered by the Board at their next meeting. PPC meetings will serve to identify the policy priorities for a given year to recommend to the Board for approval as well as to review any policy work in development by an appointed task force.

The Chair of the PPC will assign a recorder for minutes of meetings. Meeting minutes will be kept by CPA Head Office.


Approved by the CPA Board of Directors, June 2012