Professional Counseling Ethics: A Values Approach G502 Purpose

Professional Counseling Ethics: A Values Approach G502 Purpose

Professional Counseling Ethics: A Values Approach G502 Purpose of the Ethical Code Provide framework for ethical behavior Set standards for practice Protect clients, communities,

and the profession Ethics: Establish principles guiding behavior Are intentionally not specific Are not law -- they are created and followed voluntarily Origin of Ethical Codes

Created by flagship professional groups Are required to be followed by members of professional organizations Are requirements of most state licensing boards Major Ethical Codes:

American Counseling Association ASCA, AMHCA and several ACA divisions/partners NASW

AAMFT American Psychological Assoc APsyA (American Psychiatric) Most codes are similar in content The Ethics Committee Major organizations have ECs Serve as adjudicators of suspected ethics violations

Funded by organization's that created them No force of law Do not process state licensure law violations Ethics Committee Procedures

Step 1: work out with violator if possible Step 2: Contact ethics committee Committee investigates: Obtains written and oral evidence Meets to consider evidence

May conduct hearings with involved parties Process may from weeks to more than a year Committee Case Disposition Options

No violation No violation with conditions Warning Reprimand Censure Probation

Suspension Membership revocation (usually w/transmittal to state licensure board) State Licensure Board Creates, maintains, enforces state administrative law State administrative law is derived from 2 sources: Legal code

Professions ethical code State Board Procedures Complaints filed through state attorney general Investigation procedures as as for ethics committees Case dispositions same as for state ethics committees, except: Delicensure instead of expulsion

Board notifies professional organizations Values-Based Ethics Traditional ethics based on assumptions that: Ethics apply to professional behavior only Ethics are rules to be complied with for common good

Values-Based Ethics Values-based ethics assume: Ethical behavior is a lifestyle Ethics guides professionals work and personal life Common good emphasizes both client and social welfare Values-Based Ethics

The VBE practitioner: Develops ethical principles based on the current code as well as moral decisions about how the code is applied This professional reflects deeply on the impact of his/her behavior on various groups within society as well as the community as a whole

Values-Based Ethics VBE considers both current and future impact of professional decisions Decisions made using VBE may not always be consistent with law and, sometimes, may break the law found to be unjust

Values-Based Ethics Professionals making decisions according to VBE are willing to risk significant consequences (e.g., job termination) in order to follow their reasoned ethical conclusions

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