Two Facebook pages for Ella Reeves, a “Somatic trauma therapist and Brainspotter”, seen on 8 April 2022:
a. A Facebook page for ‘Brainspotting and Somatic Trauma Therapy with Ella Reeves’ contained a section titled ‘About’. That section featured text stating “Ella Kate Reeves. BACP ACCREDITED, EUROPEAN ACCREDITATION”.
b. A Facebook page for Ella Reeves included the claim “BACP accredited”.
IssueThe British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), who stated that Ella Kate Reeves was not a member of their organisation, challenged whether the claim “BACP accredited” breached the Code.
ResponseElla Reeves said, although she was no longer a member of the BACP, she considered that she was BACP accredited because she had completed several BACP accredited courses.
The ASA considered that consumers would interpret the claim “BACP accredited” to mean that Ms Reeves was accredited by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy as a member.
We understood, however, that Ms Reeves was not currently a member of the BACP. We did not consider that having completed BACP courses in the past amounted to being accredited by the organisation, and we therefore concluded that the claim was misleading.
The ads breached CAP code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 3.1 Marketing communications must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising) 3.7 3.7 Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that consumers are likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. (Substantiation) and 3.50 3.50 Marketing communications must not display a trust mark, quality mark or equivalent without the necessary authorisation. Marketing communications must not claim that the marketer (or any other entity referred to), the marketing communication or the advertised product has been approved, endorsed or authorised by any public or other body if it has not or without complying with the terms of the approval, endorsement or authorisation. (Endorsements and testimonials).
The claim must not appear again in the form complained about. We told Ella Reeves not to claim in future that she was BACP accredited if that was not the case.