About ACA

About ACA

The American Counseling Association is a not-for-profit, professional and educational organization that is dedicated to the growth and enhancement of the counseling profession. Founded in 1952, ACA is the world's largest association exclusively representing professional counselors in various practice settings.


8 Ways ACA Helped Counselors Help Others in 2018

2018 ACA Annual Report Infographic

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What Is Counseling?

According to 20/20: A Vision for the Future of Counseling, the delegates comprised of 31 counseling organizations agreed upon a unified definition of counseling: Professional counseling is a professional relationship that empowers diverse individuals, families, and groups to accomplish mental health, wellness, education, and career goals.

Divisions, Branches, and Regions

There are 18 chartered divisions within the American Counseling Association. These divisions provide leadership, resources and information unique to specialized areas and/or principles of counseling.  ACA has four regions, which serves members in those regions.  Lastly, ACA has 56 chartered branches in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America.  Please click the following links to get more information about ACA's Divisions, Branches, and Regions.

Policies, Bylaws & Forms

ACA Articles of Incorporation and Amendments
ACA Articles of Incorporation - August 1952 

ACA Bylaws
Bylaws - March 2015

ACA Policies Manual
Policy Manual - May 2019

ACA Code of Ethics

2014 ACA Code of Ethics

ACA Nominations and Elections Handbook - February 2020
2020-2021 ACA Nominations and Election Handbook Feb 2020

Code of Leadership Conduct

ACA Code of Leadership Conduct

Past Meeting Minutes
APGA/AACD/ACA Governance Meeting Minutes

Governing Council Motions
Governing Council Motions - 2003-Present (August 2020)

IRS Form 1023, Exemption Application

IRS Tax Exemption Letter for ACA

IRS Tax Exemption Letter for ACA Group (ACA divisions that are listed)

IRS Form 990 - ACA 2018 Public Version

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  • Latest News

    President Biden’s COVID-19 Action Plan

    by Guila Todd | Sep 16, 2021
    On September 9, the Biden administration announced a six-pronged, comprehensive national strategy to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, entitled “Path out of the Pandemic.”

    On September 9, the Biden administration announced a six-pronged, comprehensive national strategy to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, entitled “Path out of the Pandemic.” An overview of that strategy has been provided below.

    Vaccinating the Unvaccinated

    The Biden administration will leverage its regulatory powers to substantially increase the number of Americans covered by vaccination requirements. Requirements under the plan are as follows:

    • Requiring all employers with 100+ employees to ensure their workers are vaccinated or tested
    • Requiring vaccinations for all federal workers and for millions of contractors that do business with the federal government
    • Requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for over 17 million health care workers at Medicare and Medicaid participating hospitals and other health care settings
    • Calling on large entertainment venues to require proof of vaccination or testing for entry
    • Requiring employers to provide paid time off to get vaccinated

    Further Protecting the Vaccinated

    Pending authorization of boosters by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and a formal recommendation from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the administration will be prepared to offer booster shots beginning the week of September 20, 2021. Boosters will be available across 80,000 locations and individuals will be able find vaccination sites on a newly launched federal website, Vaccines.gov. Driving this part of the plan will be a focus on:

    • Providing easy access to booster shots for all eligible Americans
    • Ensuring Americans know where to get a booster

    Keeping Schools Safely Open

    The administration is taking the following actions to ensure schools which have reopened can remain open:

    • Requiring staff in Head Start programs, Department of Defense schools, and Bureau of Indian Education-operated schools to be vaccinated
    • Calling on all states to adopt vaccine requirement for all school employees
    • Providing additional funding to school districts for safe school reopening, including backfilling salaries and other funding withheld by states for implementing COVID-19 safety measures
    • Using the Department of Education’s full legal authority to protect students’ access to in-person instruction
    • Getting students and school staff tested regularly
    • Providing every resource to the FDA to support timely review of vaccines for individuals under the age of 12

    Increasing Testing & Requiring Masking

    The administration is taking new actions to increase the amount of COVID-19 testing and ensuring strong mask requirements in the following ways:

    • Mobilizing industry to expand easy-to-use testing Production
    • Making at-home tests more affordable
    • Sending free rapid, at-home tests to food banks and community health centers
    • Expanding free pharmacy testing
    • Continuing to require masking for interstate travel and double fines for those not in compliance
    • Continuing to require masking on federal property

    Protecting Our Economic Recovery

    The administration is rolling out new support efforts for small businesses in the following ways:

    • New support for small businesses impacted by COVID-19
    • Streamlining the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness process
    • Launching the Community Navigator Program to connect small businesses to the help they need

    Improving Care for those with COVID-19

    The administration will bolster the Surge Response Team efforts in states experiencing the highest levels of COVID-19 infection. To that end, the Biden Administration commits to the following:

    • Increased support for COVID-19 burdened hospitals
    • Increased access to monoclonal antibody to those who need it
    • Expanding the pool of health care professionals providing treatment by deploying federal monoclonal antibody strike teams

    We expect agencies directed to develop rules under the plan to begin issuing final guidance in October, while the efforts to improve care for those with COVID-19 will be initiated more immediately. Additionally, the Biden administration has indicated it will announce further steps to build on the progress made under the plan in the coming weeks. We will continue to monitor progress on this issue and update you as things progress.

    Want to get involved in ACA’s advocacy efforts? Contact the ACA Government Affairs and Public Policy team at advocacy@counseling.org.