Social workers are cognizant of their dual responsibility to clients and to the broader society. With growth in the use of communication technology in various aspects of social work practice, social workers need to be aware of the unique challenges that may arise in relation to the maintenance of confidentiality, informed consent, professional boundaries, professional competence, record keeping, and other ethical considerations. Violation of standards in this Code does not automatically imply legal liability or violation of the law. This may include providing clients with a detailed verbal explanation or arranging for a qualified interpreter or translator whenever possible. Moreover, a code of ethics cannot resolve all ethical issues or disputes or capture the richness and complexity involved in striving to make responsible choices within a moral community. The extent to which each standard is enforceable is a matter of professional judgment to be exercised by those responsible for reviewing alleged violations of ethical standards.
Social workers draw on their knowledge, values, and skills to help people in need and to address social problems. The Social Work Code of Ethics was last issued in 1994. The Code offers a set of values, principles, and standards to guide decision making and conduct when ethical issues arise. For a complete listing of social work organizations. Social workers should use accurate and respectful language in all communications to and about clients. Ethical decision making is a process. This may involve consultation with an agency-based or social work organization's ethics committee, a regulatory body, knowledgeable colleagues, supervisors, or legal counsel.
If a reasonable resolution of the conflict does not appear possible, social workers should seek proper consultation before making a decision. Social workers completing this course receive 2 ethics Online continuing education credits. They should not fabricate or falsify results and should take steps to correct any errors later found in published data using standard publication methods. Value: Service Ethical Principle: Social workers' primary goal is to help people in need and to address social problems. Rather, a code of ethics sets forth values, ethical principles, and ethical standards to which professionals aspire and by which their actions can be judged. Appropriate institutional review boards should be consulted.
The profession has an obligation to articulate its basic values, ethical principles, and ethical standards. Social workers act honestly and responsibly and promote ethical practices on the part of the organizations with which they are affiliated. Sexual harassment includes sexual advances; sexual solicitation; requests for sexual favors; and other verbal, written, electronic, or physical contact of a sexual nature. Social workers should inform clients when a real or potential conflict of interest arises and take reasonable steps to resolve the issue in a manner that makes the clients' interests primary and protects clients' interests to the greatest extent possible. The mission of the social work profession is rooted in a set of core values.
Such determination can only be made in the context of legal and judicial proceedings. Social Workers' Ethical Responsibilities to the Social Work Profession 5. Social Workers' Ethical Responsibilities as Professionals 4. Both clients' requests and the rationale for withholding some or all of the record should be documented in clients' files. This agreement should include consideration of whether confidential information may be exchanged in person or electronically, among clients or with others outside of formal counseling sessions. If clients do not wish to use services provided through technology, social workers should help them identify alternate methods of service. Social workers should review with clients circumstances where confidential information may be requested and where disclosure of confidential information may be legally required.
Social workers seek to enhance clients' capacity and opportunity to change and to address their own needs. Professional ethics are at the core of social work. The primary mission of the social work profession is to enhance human well-being and help meet the basic human needs of all people, with particular attention to the needs and empowerment of people who are vulnerable, oppressed, and living in poverty. Social workers who accept goods or services from clients as payment for professional services assume the full burden of demonstrating that this arrangement will not be detrimental to the client or the professional relationship. These principles set forth ideals to which all social workers should aspire. The Code is relevant to all social workers and social work students, regardless of their professional functions, the settings in which they work, or the populations they serve.
Value: Integrity Ethical Principle: Social workers behave in a trustworthy manner. Dual or multiple relationships occur when social workers relate to clients in more than one relationship, whether professional, social, or business. A historic and defining feature of social work is the profession's focus on individual well-being in a social context and the well-being of society. For additional guidance social workers should consult the relevant literature on professional ethics and ethical decision making and seek appropriate consultation when faced with ethical dilemmas. It does not provide a set of rules that prescribe how social workers should act in all situations. When such conflicts occur, social workers must make a responsible effort to resolve the conflict in a manner that is consistent with the values, principles, and standards expressed in this Code. Social workers should explore and may participate in bartering only in very limited circumstances when it can be demonstrated that such arrangements are an accepted practice among professionals in the local community, considered to be essential for the provision of services, negotiated without coercion, and entered into at the client's initiative and with the client's informed consent.
This applies whether social workers disclose confidential information on the basis of a legal requirement or client consent. Social workers also seek to promote the responsiveness of organizations, communities, and other social institutions to individuals' needs and social problems. Social workers should be aware of the impact of the political arena on practice and should advocate for changes in policy and legislation to improve social conditions in order to meet basic human needs and promote social justice. Social workers should inform participants of any limits of confidentiality, the measures that will be taken to ensure confidentiality, and when any records containing research data will be destroyed. Value: Dignity and Worth of the Person Ethical Principle: Social workers respect the inherent dignity and worth of the person. Alleged violations of the Code would be subject to a peer review process. In general, all ethical standards in this Code of Ethics are applicable to interactions, relationships, or communications, whether they occur in person or with the use of technology.
In some cases, protecting clients' interests may require termination of the professional relationship with proper referral of the client. In general, clients' interests are primary. They should be aware of any conflicts between personal and professional values and deal with them responsibly. Social work administrators should take reasonable steps to eliminate any conditions in their organizations that violate, interfere with, or discourage compliance with the Code. Social workers who anticipate a conflict of interest among the individuals receiving services or who anticipate having to perform in potentially conflicting roles for example, when a social worker is asked to testify in a child custody dispute or divorce proceedings involving clients should clarify their role with the parties involved and take appropriate action to minimize any conflict of interest. Such processes are generally separate from legal or administrative procedures and insulated from legal review or proceedings to allow the profession to counsel and discipline its own members.
Value: Competence Ethical Principle: Social workers practice within their areas of competence and develop and enhance their professional expertise. Dual or multiple relationships can occur simultaneously or consecutively. Social workers should claim only those relevant professional credentials they actually possess and take steps to correct any inaccuracies or misrepresentations of their credentials by others. Bartering arrangements, particularly involving services, create the potential for conflicts of interest, exploitation, and inappropriate boundaries in social workers' relationships with clients. Reasonable differences of opinion exist among social workers concerning their primary obligation as professionals during an actual or threatened labor strike or job action.