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TOPIC 7

CODE OF ETHICS
IN
COUNSELING
ETHICAL PRINCIPLES
• THE EXPECTATIONS FOR ETHICAL
CONDUCT AS EXPRESSED IN THIS CODE
ARE BASED ON THE FOLLOWING
FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES:
- respect for the dignity of persons.
- not willing fully harming others.
- integrity in relationship.
- responsible caring.
- responsibility to society.
- respect for self- determination.
THE CODE OF ETHIC IN COUNSELING
PROFESSION

PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY

• General responsibility
• Respect for rights
• Boundaries of competence
• Supervision and consultation
• Representation of professional qualification
PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY

• Responsibility to counselors and


professionals
• Unethical behavior by other counselors
• Sexual harassment
• Sensitivity to diversity
• Extension of ethical responsibilities
COUNSELING RELATIONSHIP

• Primary responsibility
• Confidentiality
• Duty to warn
• Client’s right and informed consent
• Children and persons with diminished capacity
• Maintenance of records
CODE OF ETHICS
1. Confidentiality
2. Volunteer (self awareness of the client to seek
help)
3. To respect the dignity and to promote the
welfare of clients (counselors inform clients of
the purposes, goals, procedures and limitation,
potential risks of services to be performed and
other pertinent information).
4. R e p o r t c l i e n t s w h o a r e d a n g e r o u s t o
themselves or others that could harm society
to the proper authority.
5. Refer to other professionals if the cases are
beyond the counselor’s competencies.
PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION IN
COUNSELING

• A strong professional association (counseling)


has an important role to promote and represent
counseling to the community.

• The Malaysian Counselling Association was


registered in 1982 (PERKAMA).
• The main objective:
– To provide a common professional base for
Malaysian counselors and professionals in related
areas and professionals in, from the points of
view of both professional orientation of fellowship.

• has proposed a code of ethics for it members but


adherence to the code is not guaranteed and a
system of accountability is not developed.
• Very little that can be done if negligence is
caused to clients in counseling relationship
because the laws relating to that is not clear.
• Some degree of control over the practitioner who
provides the counseling services is necessary in
order to safeguard public interest.
• Therefore: The Counselor’s Act was
established (1998) to:

– Safeguard the public against irresponsible


“counselors”.
– Streamline counseling activities and provide
“an umbrella” for counselors who are
dedicated to promote counseling.
WHY THE COUNSELOR’S ACT 580
IS NEEDED?
Due to the increasing of the problems such as:
1. The misconduct issues of professional
counselors:
– “counselor’s duty of care”
– Professional negligence
– Confidentiality
– Privileged and confidentiality
– Confidentiality and public interest
2.The effect and the consequences issues upon
the client. (eg: rape cases, sexual harassment,
child abuse etc).

3. The effect and the consequences issues to third


parties (parents, peers, friends, society, etc.).
THE COUNSELOR ACT 580
1. As a mechanism for at least assuring some minimum
quality standards that should be of value in protecting
the public interest.
2. To ensure and monitor that the practitioner is qualified
as a professional counselor.
3. Maintaining and keeping-up it’s high professional
standard to the community.

Therefore, the counselor act ensures that the field of


counseling is fully committed and protected in taking
care of the well- being of the society.
THE COUNSELOR ACT 580

1. Establishment of a counseling council


2. A board of counselors
3. A registrar
4. Disciplinary and investigation committee
5. A provision for penalty for offences
6. Certificate of practice
7. Registration as counselors
ETHICAL AND LEGAL ASPECTS OF
COUNSELING

Reasons for ethical codes:

1. Ethical standards protect the profession from government.


They allow the profession to regulate itself and function
autonomously instead of being controlled by legislation.
2. Ethical standards help control internal disagreements and
bickering, thus promoting stability within the profession.
3. Ethical standards protect practitioners from the public,
especially in regard to malpractice suits. If professionals
behave according to ethical guidelines, the behavior is judge
to be in compliance with accepted standards.
UNETHICAL BEHAVIOR
1. Violation of confidentiality
2. Exceeding one’s level of professional
competence
3. Negligent practice
4. Claiming expertise one does not possess
5. Imposing one’s values on a client
6. Creating dependency in a client
7. Sexual activity with a client
8. Certain conflicts of interest, such as dual
relationships
9. Questionable financial arrangements, such as
charging excessive fees
10. Improper advertising
Limitations of ethical codes

1. Some issues cannot be resolved by a code of


ethics
2. There are difficulties in enforcing ethical codes
3. There may be conflicts within the standards
delineated by the code
4. There are legal and ethical issues that codes do
not cover
5. Ethical codes are historical documents. Thus, what may
be acceptable practice one time may be considered
unethical later

6. There are sometimes conflicts between ethical and


legal codes

5. Ethical codes do not address cross-cultural issues

6. Ethical codes do not address every possible situation

7. There is often difficulty in bringing the interest of all


parties involved in an ethical dispute together
systematically

8. Ethical codes are not proactive documents for helping


counselors decide what to do in new situations.
THREE ETHICAL ISSUES

1. Confidentiality
2. Sexual conduct
3. Professional limits

Confidentiality
• The importance of confidentiality derives from
the ethical principles.
• Trust need too be established within the clients,
to be successful in counseling relationship.
• Violations of confidentiality are automatically
disrespectful to the dignity of the person and
constitute invasions of privacy.
• Confidentiality also based on the principle of
fidelity
• Counselors must promise not to disclose what
clients reveal to them (when we disclose
information without a client’s consent, we are
unfaithful to our promise).
• We keep confidential.
THE LIMITS OF CONFIDENTIALITY

(some exceptional to this rule):


1. Cases in which there is clear and imminent
danger to the client or to other people (eg:
bomb, drug, violent action, etc)
2. Actual or suspected child abuse
3. Records of a counselor who is not covered by
concept of privileged communication (the
records are subject to subpoena).
ISSUE OF SEXUAL CONDUCTS

• The counseling relationship can be intimate


relationship.
• The codes are clear: the relationship should not
include sexual intimacies (to be harmful to the
parties involved so to the counseling profession).
• The use of sexist language or types of sexual
harassment also is not condoned.
ISSUE OF PROFESSIONAL LIMIT
• Counselor should only accept positions for which
she/he is qualified (eg: counselor cannot be a
psychiatrist).

• Even though, he/she has MA degrees in


counseling does not certify as proficient in all
areas of counseling. (eg: a client seeking help in
sex therapy, and you had no training in this field
so, making appropriate referral would be
required here).
BASIC MORAL PRINCIPLES IN MAKING
ETHICAL DECISION
• Kitchener (1984), Meara (1996), describe six
basic moral principles that form the foundation
of functioning at the highest ethical level as a
professional:
- autonomy.
- non-maleficence.
- beneficence.
- justice.
- fidelity.
- veracity.
AUTONOMY:
• Refer to the promotion of self-determination or the
freedom of clients to choose their own direction.
• Acknowledging the right of another to choose and act in
accordance with his or her wishes
• Counselors encourage client growth and development in
ways that foster (encourage/promote) the clients’ interest
and welfare; counselors avoid fostering dependent on
counseling relationship.
• As a counselor we have to be aware that not all cultures
place a high priority on the value of being autonomous
but they stress a different set of values.
NONMALEFICENCE:

• Means avoiding doing harm, which include refraining (non-


participation) from actions that risk hurting clients, either
intentionally or unintentionally.
• Professional have a responsibility to avoid engaging in
practices that cause harm or have the potential to result in
harm.
• In counseling relationship, counselors are aware of
intimacy and responsibilities inherent in the counseling
relationship, maintain respect for clients and avoid actions
that seek to meet their personal needs at the expense of
client.
BENEFICENCE:

• Refer to promoting good for others.


• Ideally counseling contributes to the growth and
development of the client, and whatever counselors do
should not be judged against this criteria.
• The primary responsibility of counselors is to respect
dignity (pride) and to promote the welfare of client.
• Even though counselors may be operating with good
intentions and may think they are being beneficent, they
may not always be doing what is in the best interest of
the client.
JUSTICE:

• Means fairness or providing equal treatment to


all people.
• Everyone regardless of age, sex, race, ethnicity,
disability, socio-economic status, cultural
background, religious, or sexual orientation, is
entitled to equal access to mental-health
services.
• If intervention strategies are not relevant to
some segments of the population, justice is
being violated.
FIDELITY:
• Means that professionals make honest promises and
honor their commitments to those they serve.
• This entails fulfilling one’s responsibilities of trust in a
relationship.
• It is necessary for the counselors to inform the clients of
the purposes, goals, techniques, procedures, limitations,
potential risks and benefits of services to be performed
and other pertinent (relevant/related) information.

• Fidelity involves creating a trusting and therapeutic


relationship.
VERACITY:

• Means truthfulness.
• Practitioners are truthful with their clients, the
trust required to form a good working
relationship.
• Informed consent is part of being truthful with
clients.
• Client have to understand the implications of the
use of test and reports, fees and billing
arrangements.
CONCLUSION
• The development of professional codes of ethic
done by group or committee of member of
professional organization.
• Codes of ethic serves to protect client or the
public from harmful activity.
• Relevant consideration includes the welfare of
student , the competency of educator , the right
to informed consent , the right to expect
confidentiality , responsibility to terminate a
relationship and the suggestion practice of
consulting with knowledgeable colleague.
CONCLUSION ……CONTINUE

• This is offer the guidelines & raise some


issue relevant directly services to student

• The action of professional may be defined


overtly in job description or term of expect
that parent & others have of educator &
support the professionals especially at
school