Why they do for the public Professional associations maintain a valuable commitment to serve and work in the best interest of their members. They help educate the public about the profession and its value. They also provide resources to the public and its members to help with Quality Assurance. Associations are not supervised by a government authority. They are self-governing with a Board of Directors that is made up of members of the association. Most associations will promote the profession they represent. Membership in an association is voluntary. Members pay membership dues and volunteer for association tasks to carry out the needs of the association. Often, members of an association are also members of a Regulated College. Benefits of joining an Association Provides a voice: To the general public, referring health professionals, the media, the insurance industry, the government and other organizations on a regular and consistent basis regarding their scope of practice and the benefits of their professional services. Up-to-date Information for its members: Readily available information and trends that will affect their members’ practice, ie; changes in billing practices. Actively markets their profession: Pushes the value of the profession and counters any negative press that may harm it through multimedia venues. Creates Opportunities: Builds on current research that allows doors to open for their profession. Builds alliances to enhance their credibility and position. Professional Development: Associations are constantly creating and providing professional development opportunities for their members. This may be done through other institutes, associations, conferences and workshops with industry leaders. – in order for their members to maintain their membership privileges. They support their members in the achievement of competent and ethical practices by providing and promoting ongoing professional development and training in ethical practices. They work to ensure fair compensation for their members and continuously elevate their professional image across Ontario. Each association has requirements that members must meet yearly to maintain their certification. Professional development credits, hours performing the services under their scope of practice etc..