RASP Application Process

Applying for a Position on the RASP

ACT, in conjunction with our Advisory Council & Board of Directors, works with the professional community and MCFD to clarify qualifications for behavior consultants who wish to be added to the RASP. In the summer of 2006 this collaboration resulted in the development by the Ministry of a new application form, which includes significant changes to Category A and B consultant qualifications. Further changes were made in August of 2008. We urge all consultants to review the application form carefully prior to applying to the RASP. Email questions to lbroadley@actcommunity.ca.

Note: The process for adding professionals to the RASP is more complex for behavior consultants. As there is no accreditation process for behavior consultants in British Columbia, ACT will continue to monitor developments in the field of ASD internationally for relevant information, and to receive advice from members of its Advisory Council. We also welcome input on this complex subject. Please contact Louise Broadley at lbroadley@actcommunity.ca.

In the meantime, please be aware that we will continue to caution families to carefully check qualifications of individual behavior consultants they may be interested in hiring. And, although we cannot and do not endorse the expertise of any professional on the RASP, we will continue to assist parents to make informed choices by providing information such as Assessing Qualifications – Tips for Parents; or our Program Evaluation Checklist and by asking professionals to keep their information current.

Points of Clarification

  • There is no equivalent list for professionals who provide services for children with autism who are 6 and over because the MCFD requirements are not as stringent. (See chapter 5, MCFD-Funded services for Children with ASD, in the ACT Autism Manual for B.C.). However, parents of children six and over can use the RASP as a useful tool.
  • Although it is advisable to do so, a family is not required to hire a behavior consultant in order to use MCFD funding to hire speech language pathologists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, or behavior interventionists.
  • Behavior interventionists are not included on the RASP (MCFD does not have specific requirements for this group). Parents are responsible for ensuring that BIs are at least 19 years old and have a valid criminal record check.
  • There are many qualified SLPs, OTs and PTs with extensive ASD-related experience working in public and non-profit agencies; however, the RASP is only for those who work in private practice with children under 6 with ASD.

Criminal Record Checks

The Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) requires that all professionals listed on the RASP provide a Criminal Record Check (CRC) These must be resubmitted every five years, when ACT requests an update.

ACT sends out letters to every individual on the RASP whose CRC is either due or will soon be due for renewal, asking them to submit a new CRC. If you have received such a letter, please be aware that if you do not meet the stated deadline we will have no choice but to remove you from the list. You may reapply but this could take some time and you will not be compensated by the Autism Funding Branch for work you do during this period.

Criminal Record Check (CRC) Process for Residents of Canada

To help facilitate the CRC process for both new applicants and current members of the RASP, ACT has made arrangements with the BC Ministry of Justice (MOJ) to utilize its eCRC online service. The fee is $28 payable to the MOJ.

Please contact the Administrative Assistant. Ruby Bhandal (raspadmin@actcommunity.ca),  for instructions to complete the online criminal record check application.

CRCs From US Residents

RASP applicants who are US residents are advised to go to the Bureau of Consular Affairs, U.S. Department of State which provides information about several ways to obtain a criminal record check.

The type of criminal record check required is comparable to one that is required to work in the public school system in the US.

It is important to note that all applicants, including those who reside outside Canada, must submit a criminal record check directly from the screening agency to ACT – Autism Community Training Society, addressed to the attention of Louise Broadley – Manager of Autism Information Services. CRCs are not accepted when submitted directly to ACT by applicants themselves. In exceptional circumstances in which this is not possible, non-residents of Canada must have their document legally authenticated.

To find information about how to obtain a criminal background check for individuals living in the specific states within the US we suggest that the applicant enter in a search engine (e.g. Google, Yahoo, etc.) the name of the state where they reside followed by the words ‘obtain criminal background check’ (e.g. Wyoming obtain criminal background check). This will yield the information about the state’s procedure for the applicant to have a background check forwarded to ACT – Autism Community Training Society, addressed to the attention of Louise Broadley – Manager of Autism Information Services.

Addressing Concerns: A Note of Caution for Behavior Consultants

Prior to applying for inclusion on the RASP, we ask behavior consultants to keep in mind the following important considerations:

  • By placing yourself on the list, you are formally stating that you are qualified to design, supervise, and oversee the implementation of intensive, comprehensive, and effective behavioral treatment programs for children under 6 with ASD. Please note that treatment programs should be individualized and based on published research and methodologies.
  • Behavioral consultants who are registered members of professional colleges are required by their regulatory bodies to work within the prescribed boundaries of their competence based on their education, training, and supervised professional experience. They are also required to maintain awareness of new scientific and professional developments in their field of practice and to engage in ongoing professional development. As necessary, professionals are expected to request technical support, consultations, and/or supervision from more experienced colleagues in order to develop new skills and/or deal with unfamiliar or challenging situations.
  • Behavioral consultants who are not registered members of professional colleges should nevertheless be prepared to uphold these same standards. Any applicant to the RASP who does not have the education, training, and supervised experience required to be a registered member of a regulatory body or who over-states his or her level of competence, could be open to future legal challenges from parents who are dissatisfied with services received or who feel they have been misled about the professional’s qualifications.
  • Inclusion on the RASP as a behavior consultant does not guarantee that one’s current qualifications will be considered sufficient over the long-term. Category A and B qualifications will continue to evolve, in order to reflect ongoing developments internationally in the field of ASD. Behavior consultants who do not qualify under Category A of the RASP application are also strongly advised to upgrade their qualifications.
  • Professionals who provide services to children over age 6 with ASD do not have to be on the RASP list in order for parents to use their government funding to pay for their services. However, ACT urges these professionals to also upgrade their qualifications, as per national and international trends in this area of ASD research and treatment.

Guidelines on Ethical Conduct

As many behavior consultants are providing service without the oversight of a professional body, the Behavior Analyst Certification Board Guidelines for Responsible Conduct For Behavior Analysts provides helpful guidelines for ethical practice relevant to practitioners in British Columbia.

Professional Development Opportunities

The Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) offers two certifications, one for individuals with a Bachelors degree (Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst™, BCaBA™) and one for individuals with a Masters or higher degree (Board Certified Behavior Analyst™, BCBA™). The University of British Columbia is offering courses for those who wish to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.    BCBA™ certification is increasingly being recognized internationally as an important means for improving one’s credentials as a behavior consultant.   Capilano University and Douglas College both offer courses to become a Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst™.

This certification means that an individual has met a number of degree, coursework, and experience requirements and has passed an examination administered by the BACB.  To find out more about course availability, eligibility, costs, enrolment, and other important details visit ACT’s page on post secondary programs for professionals.

ACT will continue to provide information about continuing educational opportunities from accredited institutions, as well as the presentations we and other BC organizations offer. Please note that, while they do demonstrate a commitment to upgrading one’s professional knowledge base, presentations that offer certificates of attendance but not a formal certification process, are not considered sufficient to demonstrate mastery of a subject area.

Appeal Process for RASP applicants

ACT is contracted by the Ministry of Children and Family Development to adjudicate RASP applications and manage the RASP list. If your application is declined and you feel your application was not fairly reviewed you may appeal to ACT – Autism Community Training.

The process is as follows:

  1. Contact Louise Broadley, ACT’s Manager of Autism Information Services at lbroadley@actcommunity.ca or 604-205-5467 to discuss further the reason your application was declined. Should you wish to continue with an appeal, proceed to Step 2.
  2. Appeals can be made to ACT’s Executive Director, Deborah Pugh at dpugh@actcommunity.ca.

It is important to note that the requirements around education, experience and supervision, are set by the Ministry of Children and Family Development in collaboration with members of the RASP Advisory Panel. The Panel includes representatives of the professions covered by the RASP and parents of children with ASD. ACT has no authority to change MCFD policy but we do listen carefully to concerns around RASP policy that are shared with us by both parents and professionals. We will bring them forward for discussion with the RASP Panel which meets twice a year.

The name of the Qualified Service Provider (QSP List) list has been formally changed to the Registry of Autism Service Providers (RASP); the revised Ministry for Children and Family Development application form for the RASP is available from the MCFD website.

Please submit the original application by mail to ACT – Autism Community Training, Suite 150 – 2250 Boundary Road, Burnaby, BC V5M 3Z3. Faxed applications are not acceptable and will delay your application.

NOTE: If you plan to submit an application to be included in the Registry of Autism Service Providers, be sure to pay attention to the Criminal Record Check requirements described above.