Take a Stand for Yoga in Missouri
February 8, 2016
It’s an exciting time for Missouri’s yoga community! Our legislation, which will exempt yoga teacher training programs (YTTs) from unnecessary regulation by the Missouri Department of Higher Education, is moving full steam ahead in both the Missouri House of Representatives and Senate.
The House version of our legislation, HB 1681, passed through the Emerging Issues Committee and the Committee on General Laws – both by unanimous vote. Next, it will head to the House floor this week for a vote by the full House of Representatives! What’s more, the Senate version of the bill, SB 941, is also up for consideration by the Senate Education Committee at a hearing on Wednesday. A big thank you to all of the policymakers who supported this legislation for being champions of the Missouri yoga community!
As we move forward, your support will be crucial. Right now, we need your help to drum up support for HB 1681 before the big House vote this week. Make your voice heard by Thursday, February 11th; send a short email to your representative urging support for HB 1681.
Email Your Representative
A direct message to your representative is much more effective than blast emailing the entire House. We’ve provided quick and easy instructions for contacting your representative below:
- First, find your representative by typing your zip code into this website.
- You can also find your representative in the Directory of Representatives.
- Click on your representative and navigate to their homepage. The representative’s email address will be listed there. (Please note that we are only asking you to email your representative in the Missouri House. The legislation is not yet up for consideration by the full Senate.)
- Send your representative an email asking for their support on HB 1681. We have provided a draft email below, but feel free to write your own.
Subject Line: Vote YES on HB 1681!
Dear Representative ___________________,
As your constituent, I am asking for your support on HB 1681, an important bill which would protect the rights of yoga studios to operate in Missouri without unnecessary and burdensome regulation by the Missouri Department of Higher Education (MDHE). Recently, the bill passed unanimously by two committees: the House Emerging Issues Committee and the House Committee on General Laws.
HB 1681 would prevent MDHE from requiring advanced yoga programs – known as yoga teacher training programs (YTTs) – around the state to pay expensive fees and to comply with unnecessary requirements in order to continue operation.
MDHE is only supposed to license occupational/vocational schools in Missouri, but YTTs are not occupational/vocational programs. In fact, the vast majority of individuals who attend YTTs do not make a living teaching yoga, but rather, attend class for recreational and avocational reasons – like personal improvement or practicing yoga in a group setting. HB 1681 seeks to protect this activity.
Further, many yoga studios that offer teacher training programs are small businesses with tight budgets. The fees and administrative requirements imposed by MDHE are hefty and harmful to these small businesses. HB 1681 would support and grow Missouri’s vibrant yoga community.
Finally, there is no need for regulation. YTTs have been around for years, and we are not aware of a single complaint against these programs. As the saying goes, “if it’s not broken, why fix it?”
Please support Missouri small business and the yoga community by voting “Yes” on HB 1681.
If you are comfortable doing so, please include your mailing address to reinforce for your representative that you live in his or her district.
We will keep you posted on new developments as soon as they happen. Yoga Alliance® is proud to stand with you to protect Missouri’s yoga community.