JOINT ANNOUNCEMENT OF ESTABLISHMENT OF NEW YORK
STATE SUBCOMMITTEE OF ACUPUNCTURE TRADE UNION
In recent thirty years, although acupuncture treatment has been widely accepted, yet the professional status of
acupuncturists has been sliding down, their income is constantly dropping resulting a great number of acupuncturists
have been either laid off or have shifted their profession to another trade or industry. The trend of existence of
acupuncture profession is even more difficult, especially due to the attempt of people from other trade to poke their
noses into acupuncture profession and the discrimination from insurance companies. Recalling the past and examining
the causes, we have finally found out it is mainly due to the fact that the acupuncturists do not know how to apply legal
method to protect their professional benefits and raise their professional status.
After repeated exploring and studying, we have come to know that union is a good form of organization. Union has more
than a hundred years of history in the United States of America. Traditionally, union is an organization for blue color
workers, who, according to the standard of the Constitution, united together to struggle against their employers for the
unreasonable and unequal treatment through the work of personnel in specific fields including lawyers, political talkers,
union activities and sometimes adopting the form of strikes permitted by the Constitution so as to protect their own
rights and benefits and to raise their political status. History has proved Union is the most efficient organization to
protect the right and benefit of the workers. In recent years, the white color figures, such as pharmacists, foot-doctors,
writers, musicians (including self-employed) have also adopted such forms to protect themselves, who have organized
unions of their own kind. Practice proves the unions of professional self-employed are extremely efficient to protect their
own right and benefit. Under such background, the New York State acupuncture preparatory group has born
The First Conference was held on June 22nd, 2003 with nine participants who have come from different acupuncture
teams. They discussed at the meeting the preparatory work of organizing the union and also dispatch representatives
to exchange points of views with acupuncturists from Acupuncture Society of New York. The second session was held
on August 17th, 2003 with 18 participants, at which a common view had reached and emphasized once again the
1, A formal preparatory group of acupuncturist union has formed. Professor Huang zi ming holds the post of convener.
Members who have engaged in the work of the preparatory group are in their own names. According to the future
development, acupuncturists who are capable and willing to work can be accepted at any time.
2, Series of advertising activities concerning the knowledge of union will be held.
3, To draft a common declaration, which will be distributed among all NYS licensed acupuncturists.
4, To strive for a large-scale of meeting to be held in October 2003 concerning the study, discussing and advertising of
This is not alarmist talk; the life and death of acupuncture cause has reached a dangerous edge. We do hope all our
acupuncturists are concerned about union, understand union. You should not only just “sit there & talk”, but also “stand
up & take actions”. We welcome our acupuncturists to join the union preparatory team so as to make it more
representative and lively.
Attached: A copy of “Brief introduction of union”
Union preparatory Team of Acupuncture of New York State
Address: 108-A E 38th Street
New York, NY 10016
Tel. (212) 889-4802
FAX (646) 742-1655
BRIEF INTRODUCTION OF THE UNION
1, What kind of the union is for professionals?
Union in English means people of the same trade are organized by union professionals to unite together to guarantee
their deserved benefits and to strive for more benefits using our rights provided by the Constitution.
Union is like a large net work. Acupuncturist has a position in the net work. Many different groups of people also have
positions in this net work. Every group of people who have joined this net work (union), they either have a common goal
or they have different professional characteristics of their own under the law.
2, What can the union do for us?
There are a number of lawyers, political talkers and union active figures in the union. They launch their work at different
levels of governmental organizations, for instance, the Federal, the State and the City. They will make use of their
political connection to go canvassing for the support from the government, members of House of Representatives and
senators. They can request motion legislation and also can carry out discussions with insurance companies on behalf of
the union members for their economical benefits in order to correct their unreasonable and unequal attitude towards
acupuncturists. They also can start working with other professional organizations like the Doctors Union and hold
meetings with professionals to exert influence on them. There is a wide range of work for the union to do, and the kind
of work they are to do have to be determined by the content of the contract signed. In order to fight for the right and
benefit of the acupuncture profession and to deal with the difficulties the acupuncturists facing during their clinical
practices, all the acupuncturists must unite together.
3, The relationship between the union workers and the acupuncture union members?
The relationship between the union workers and the union members is the relation between employers and employees.
The members of the union hire the union workers to work for them.
4, Does the union require the union members to sign agreement with the union?
The answer is YES. There will be annual meetings for the members, at which different suggestions and proposals will be
collected, requests and demand will be classified, representatives will be elected to hold discussions with the union and
finally to work out the content of the agreement. Such agreement will be signed every year according to different
conditions. In case of dissatisfied with the union’s work, people can stop extending their agreement or to join in another
union net work..
5, Can we trust the union?
Union conforms to the federal standard and every member of the union must have professional license. The Federal
law has strict requirements to the range of the union’s activities, personal integrity and working responsibilities. Union
members can select those whom they trust to supervise how the union will carry out the agreement. On the other hand,
the union also has the obligation to report to the members their work performances.
6, How to join the union?
Acupuncturists unite! You can join the union either collectively or personally.
7, The obligation of union members,
To pay your member fees in time (out of 60% will be used to Federal level, 30% to State level 10% to City level); elect
member representatives, put forward your requests and suggestions and finally check and supervise the work
performances of the union.
8, Does it mean that the union can satisfy all your requirements when you join the union?
To join the union means that acupuncturists can make good use of our right provided by law, to protect our right and
benefit, and raise our professional status through union. What is more important is that the union is the most efficient
and reliable form not only in our political field, but also in our economical and professional fields, which of course does
not mean union can do whatever we request. What union does must be in compliance with the law, the actual condition
and the national condition of the United States of America. For example, the union is unable to raise acupuncturists’
status that of the physicians’, but however the union can raise acupuncturists’ status so as to be respected by
physicians. The union can hardly stop foot doctors from obtaining acupuncture license following in physician’s
footsteps. Through discussion and compromise, foot doctors can obtain acupuncture license by increasing study hours
or through examination.
9, What advantages do you have after joining in the union?
1) After you have joined the union, you can speak in one voice and the aim is clear, which is easy for the
government to comprehend.
2) Union can rely on Federal laws and rules which provide reliable professional services.
3) Acupuncturist professional status will be raised after joining the union. The union is able to carry out dialogue
with the government, the Insurance Companies, professional organizations and members of House of Representatives
and senators and their strength will be greatly increased.
4) Union professionals are knowledgeable about law, legislation, government system, political operation and have
skilful negotiation abilities and are able to promote their efficiency.
5) Union members when they work in hospitals, schools and no-fault clinics, their right and benefit can be
guaranteed. Union can also oppose unequal treatment. Not only the employer, but also the employee of the union
member will be benefited.
6) Union members can work at ease and develop their business under the big protective umbrella of the union.
7) After having joined the union, every acupuncture groups can still exist and can bring their academic and contact
function into full play and the benefit will also be higher.
8) Joining the union will change completely the phase of the acupuncture professionals of being in a state of disunity
and allowing themselves to be ordered about
9) From long term point of view, if acupuncture union is established in the State of New York and become one big
unified nation wide union, this union will become to a huge political entity. Not only the Government will respect it,
political figures from different kinds of groups will rely on it and insurance companies will deal with it carefully. Any
organizations who intend to control the Chinese acupuncture business will find no way to do so. Later on, we can set up
our own standard for examination system and stipulate acupuncturists’ qualification requirement. Acupuncturists will
decide their own fate according to their own will.