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EMDRIA Policies
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EMDRIA Policies

EMDRIA Members, Certified Therapists, Approved Consultants, EMDRIA Credit Providers, and EMDR Training Providers must adhere to the following policies as a condition of membership and approval.


Professional Code of Conduct


EMDR International Association (EMDRIA) has adopted a Professional Code of Conduct in order to assure the highest standards of excellence and integrity in EMDR. By adopting this Code, EMDRIA creates guidelines to establish and uphold standards of practice, training, certification, and research. All members of EMDRIA, as a condition of membership, subscribe to the Code of Conduct.


Code of Conduct

  1. Members of EMDRIA shall observe the professional and ethical standards of their respective clinical professions. If members are not licensed or accountable to a particular discipline’s code of ethics, or if their Code of Ethics does not address the concern at hand, then the American Psychological Association (APA) Code of Ethics (APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, January 1, 2017) shall apply.

  2. Members shall continue to be in good standing with the professional organization with which they are affiliated and regulatory board (e.g., state or provincial licensure board or Ministry of Health) in their jurisdiction and have no confirmed findings of illegal, unprofessional or unethical conduct. Members shall report within 30 days to EMDRIA any problems and authorize EMDRIA to contact the appropriate licensing boards.

  3. Members shall adhere to the code of ethics of their respective clinical profession with regard to the advertising of services or EMDR training programs. If members are not licensed or accountable to a particular discipline’s code of ethics, then the APA Code of Ethics (APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, January 1, 2017) regarding ethics in advertising and public statements shall apply.

  4. Members or Non-Members serving in an EMDRIA-sanctioned position will follow all policies and guidelines related to that position.


Sexual Orientation Change Efforts & Reparative Therapy

In the United States, health and mental health associations have objected to sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), conversion therapy, reparative therapy, and other efforts that define non-heterosexual orientation as deviant and abnormal.1 A significant body of scholarly research and evidence indicates that a normal continuum of human sexuality, sexual orientation, and both gender identity and expression all exist beyond heterosexuality. Further, study findings indicate that SOCE, conversion therapy, and reparative therapy can be harmful, particularly to children and adolescents.


Considering this context, EMDRIA recognizes the need and responsibility to address the use of EMDR therapy approaches in any SOCE, conversion therapy, reparative therapy, and other efforts that pathologizes sexual and gender minority (LGBTQIA2) persons and communities. EMDRIA does not believe that representations of sexual orientation and gender identity result from unresolved trauma. An individual’s sexual orientation and gender identity are not matters of pathology, and thus, EMDRIA does not believe LGBTQIA individuals, by nature of their sexual orientation and gender identity, are in need of mental health treatment. EMDRIA states unequivocally that the use of EMDR therapy in any SOCE program, conversion therapy, reparative therapy, or other similar intervention is contraindicated and is fundamentally inappropriate. Use of EMDR therapy in such efforts is outside the norms and values of EMDRIA. EMDRIA objects to the efforts at sexual orientation change and reparative therapy. As a condition of membership and approval, EMDRIA prohibits the use of EMDR therapy for this purpose by its Members, Certified Therapists, Approved Consultants, Credit Providers, and Approved Training Providers. 

1For additional information about positions regarding SOCE, conversion therapy, and reparative therapy made by U.S. health and mental health organizations, and by governmental agencies and representatives, go to:

2LGBTQIA: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual



Diversity and Cultural Competence

EMDRIA acknowledges and promotes membership diversity for the purpose of fostering growth, learning, creativity and productivity in our professional organization. We value diversity and encourage inclusion, sharing and mutual respect for the multiple perspectives that foster a climate of understanding of the interdependence of multicultural humanity within our profession and in members’ service to the community. We foster diversity through education and the development of policies and practices that encompass multiple aspects of human differences, life experiences, and viewpoint, and further recognize their similarities and interrelationships. EMDRIA’s diversity perspective includes, but is not limited to, the influence of culture, race/ethnicity, nationality/citizenship, gender/gender identity, sexual/affectional orientation, socio-economic status, religion/spirituality, ability/disability, and/or age.


EMDRIA values cultural competence both as an organizational goal and as a core component of effective EMDR therapy. We seek to ally with and contribute to the general movement toward cultural competence within the fields of health service provision, education and elsewhere. We view culture as the common patterns of human behavior and overall meaning associated with particular social groups that can include thoughts and behaviors, language and communication patterns, customs, beliefs, values and other dimensions related to group identification and participation. Cultural groups include a wide range of socially salient groups, large and small, within a society. The impact of culture is both externally lived in a person's life through social interactions as well as being internally experienced within a person's sense of self. EMDRIA regards cultural competence as the capacity to understand and respect the importance of culture and to integrate that awareness into both organizational health and service delivery. 


EMDRIA strives to educate and support EMDR clinicians as they implement culturally attuned EMDR therapy in a multicultural world. EMDRIA believes that cultural competence includes a deep and evolving appreciation of the role that cultural forces play in the well-being of all people, both constructive and destructive. We encourage culturally competent clinicians to pursue knowledge and understanding regarding the general importance of culture as well as cultural awareness specific to service to each client; and to further adapt and maintain EMDR therapy skills that are culturally sensitive and effective. 

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