State Recognition for New Jersey

Recognized? Yes – Licensure

Recognition Status: On January 21, 2020 Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law the Music Therapist Licensing Act, legislation to create a music therapy license under the newly established State Board of Creative Arts and Activities Therapies. Procedures for applying for licensure are currently being developed.

Active Task Force? Yes

Year Started: 2006

Task Force Status: NJ Music Therapist Licensing Act bill successful in both houses during the past 2016-2017 NJ Legislative Session with amendments; but pocket vetoed by Governor as he completed his term of office so process started again in 2018. Bill reintroduced in the 2018-2019 legislative session as A2183 and S1687 in the General Assembly and Senate respectively. Assembly bill A2183 released from committee and passed General Assembly April 12, 2018. Combined bills in Senate Commerce Committee awaiting hearing since June 2018. Bills enjoy bi-partisan support. The Music Therapist Licensing Act is now in its third legislative session. Previous sessions 2014-2015 A4353/S2971 not enough time to complete the process and 2016-2017 A783/S1601 pocket vetoed. On January 31, 2019 Governor Murphy sent the Drama/Dance Movement Therapist Licensing Act A1220 back to General Assembly with a conditional veto that would establish a new state board of Creative Arts Therapies. Music therapists would be represented on this proposed board. This will necessitate amendment to current music therapist licensing bills A2183/S1687 if new state board proposal is passed in General Assembly and Senate. As of June 30, 2019 the board has not received a vote. The Music Therapist Licensing Act was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy on January 21, 2020 requiring a license to practice music therapy in NJ. Procedures are for application are currently being developed and will be posted here when complete.

Task Force Contact Name: Paula Unsal

Task Force Contact Email:

Task Force Members: Lynn Coyle, Virginia Eulacio Cierniak, Melissa Santiago, Paula Unsal, Beth Walls, Brian Abrams (consulting), Lauren Carter (student representative)

Task Force Facebook: NJ Music Therapy Task Force

State Association:

State Association Facebook: NJ Association for Music Therapy

Regional Association:

State Legislative Activity:

Below you will find information and links to bills in the state that include the keyword “music therapy.” Some bills may have a direct impact on the profession (e.g. music therapy licensure legislation) while others may not (e.g. music therapy is included in a pre-existing list of healthcare providers). Information is provided by StateTrack, a subscription service that allows CBMT to follow state and federal legislative and regulatory developments. This resource is provided for informational purposes to help you stay informed on legislative and policy issues impacting music therapy practice. Please contact your task force chair with questions and before taking any action.

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