What is NYSPA PAC?
NYSPA PAC is the only nonpartisan political action committee formed and governed by psychologists for the sole purpose of advancing our profession's political agenda in New York. NYSPA PAC is the vehicle informed psychologists utilize collectively to exert their influence, politically. NYSPA PAC collects voluntary contributions from psychologists all around our state and then distributes them to the campaigns of candidates for the New York State Legislature.
Why do psychologists need a PAC?
Psychology is a regulated profession in New York State. This means that as a profession we are subject to the enactment of laws and regulations by state officials which can have a dramatic impact not only on the practice of psychology but on our ability to earn an income as well. Legislative policy typically gets constructed and then "hammered out" within the context of competing groups who have a "special interest" in the enactment (or not) of the policy in question. These special interest groups are organized into political action committees (PACs) for the expressed purpose of gaining access to legislators so that they can be heard and hence have a say in the legislation being proposed.
Why is a contribution through NYSPA PAC valuable?
A PAC can do things for us that a singular psychologist contributing to a campaign cannot. PAC contributions are perceived by legislators as being more valuable than a singular contribution because it does not cost them a cent to solicit for these contributions -- the PAC does that for them. The net affect is that the PAC magnifies your personal contribution by virtually doubling the actual impact of your donation. When a contribution comes from a PAC, the candidate knows what issues are important to you because you are part of the PAC and if they don't know they are highly motivated to find out, because PAC contributions have perceived value and credibility which matters to them. Of course, larger, more well-endowed PACs have a greater value than smaller ones.
Why doesn't NYSPA use dues money support candidates?
NYSPA is a tax exempt, professional organization and as such it is prohibited from using its revenues for political campaign purposes. NYSPA PAC was organized as a PAC so that it could give a voice to psychology in the political arena. This is why we need EVERY PSYCHOLOGIST throughout the state to contribute to NYSPA PAC so that by using our "common cents" we can grow into a PAC that will not only be heard, but listened to!