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Ethical Practice and Child Abuse Codes

All major helping professions throughout the world have codes outlining guidelines for ethical practice. The codes promote professional empowerment by assisting professionals to a) keep good practice b) protect their clients, c) safeguard their autonomy, and d) enhance the profession. Ethical codes would also be summarized by the words " keep the best interest of your clients in mind; do no harm to your clients; treat them responsibly with full awareness of the social context of helping" Counselors and therapists are responsible for the client before themselves and for society as well. At times these responsibilities conflict, and you will especially want to seek more detailed guidance and consultation from your supervisor and written ethical codes. Codes contain information on competence, informed consent, confidentiality and diversity. Issues of advocacy, power and social justice are implicit in all codes, but most explicitly in counseling, social work and human services.

What's one thing that stands out for you in the area of ethics? What's one thing that you consider most important? Ideas of social justice and action in the community are considered by some a controversial topic. What are your thoughts?

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Ethics and codes have a correlation to state law, particularly when it comes to reporting abuse such as elder abuse or child abuse. One issue of controversy is immunity for the person reporting abuse. In some cases, the protection provided allows for misuse of the law.

The Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment and Adoption Reform Act of 1990 was established in an attempt to make states enforce stringent protocols for reporting suspected child abuse. The California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act was established in 1990 following the guidelines set by the federal Act. However, some attorneys argue that the definitions of both violations and what are the parameters of immunity established for mandated reporters are still vague in the current California Act. (March, 1992) California Penal Code 1172 was written ...

Solution Summary

What's one thing that stands out for you in the area of ethics? What's one thing that you consider most important? Ideas of social justice and action in the community are considered by some a controversial topic. What are your thoughts?

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