social work. practice. Social workers should develop and maintain the attitudes, knowledge, understanding and skills to provide quality services and accountable practice. Although social work is a profession laden with contradictions, the primary task within the social work profession is to ensure that the directives and principles enshrined in social work ethics, call on social workers to establish human rights and willingly be able to challenge unjust principles (Allan et al 2009). Email: policyadmin@basw.co.uk Respecting the right to self determination Social workers should respect, promote and support people’s dignity and right to make their own choices and decisions, irrespective of their values and life choices, provided this does not threaten the rights, safety and legitimate interests of others. They should respect people’s beliefs, values, culture, goals, needs, preferences, relationships and affiliations. There will be variations in interpretation and guidance in the different countries. Social workers should maintain clear, impartial and accurate records and provision of evidence to support professional judgements. Its clarity and accessibility make it an invaluable learning source. Ethical awareness is fundamental to the professional practice of social workers. Social workers should use the authority of their role in a responsible, accountable and respectful manner. The NASW Code of Ethics sets forth these values, principles, and standards to guide social workers’ conduct. Exceptions to this may only be justified on the basis of a greater ethical requirement such as evidence of serious risk or the preservation of life. These include counselling, clinical social work, group work, social pedagogical work, and family treatment and therapy as well as efforts to help people obtain services and resources in the community. Their ability and commitment to act ethically is an essential aspect of the quality of the service offered to those who engage with social workers. Social work is a service-based profession, your duties lie in helping others, so … Upholding the values and reputation of the profession Social workers should act at all times in accordance with the values and principles of the profession and ensure that their behaviour does not bring the profession into disrepute. Promoting the right to participation Social workers should promote the full involvement and participation of people using their services in ways that enable them to be empowered in all aspects of decisions and actions affecting their lives. Copyright © British Association of Social Workers The Association commends and promotes the Code of Ethics to all social workers, educators and employers of social workers in the UK. Underpinne… The British Association of Social Workers is the professional association for social workers in the United Kingdom (UK). These key documents were reviewed and agreed in 2010 by IFSW and IASSW. Professional social work is focused on problem solving and change. Implications for Social Work. Sections 1 and 2 of this document draw on the background, definition and statement of ethical principles of the IFSW/IASSW (2004) document, with amendments including the addition of ‘professional integrity’ as a value alongside human rights and social justice. They should contribute to social work education, including the provision of good quality placements, and ensure students are informed of their ethical responsibilities to use the Code in their practice. The Association has a duty to ensure as far as possible that its members discharge their ethical obligations and are afforded the professional rights necessary for the safeguarding and promotion of the rights of people who use social work services. The Code comprises statements of values and ethical principles relating to human rights, social justice and professional integrity, followed by practice principles that indicate how the ethical principles should be applied in practice. Ethical considerations for social workers The considerations for social workers are based on existing professional standards and codes. The NASW Code of Ethics is intended to serve as a guide to the everyday professional conduct of social workers. In everyday usage, ‘values’ is often used to refer to one or all of religious, moral, cultural, political or ideological beliefs, principles, attitudes, opinions or preferences. It is relevant to all social workers and social work students regardless of their specific functions or settings. This Code includes four sections: The first Section, "Preamble," summarizes the social work profession's mission and core values. Academic Michael Preston-Shoot points to the areas of learning that need improvement if child … Useful Tips. Correspondence to: Sarah Banks, Community and Youth Work Studies Unit, Durham University, 45, Old Elvet, Durham DH1 3HN, UK. Since its beginnings over a century ago, social work practice has focused on meeting human needs and developing human potential. Social workers should not collude with the erosion of human rights or allow their skills to be used for inhumane purposes such as systematic abuse, detention of child asylum seekers and threats to family life of those in vulnerable positions. The term ‘social work values’ refers to a range of beliefs about what is regarded as worthy or valuable in a social work context (general beliefs about the nature of the good society, general principles about how to achieve this through actions, and the desirable qualities or character traits of professional practitioners). Social workers should be prepared to report bad practice using all available channels including complaints procedures and if necessary use public interest disclosure legislation and whistleblowing guidelines. The Social Work Code of Ethics was last issued in 1994. This is to make sure that ethics and values are upheld by all social workers. Professional ethics are at the core of social work. What are the roles of a Social Worker? This is a method of qualitative research which varies markedly in its theoretical framework, structure, process and orientation from those employed in quantitative methodology (Sarantakos 1997). Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversities are central to social work. They should challenge and seek to address any actions of colleagues who demonstrate negative discrimination or prejudice. They should analyse and evaluate the quality and outcomes of their practice with people who use social work services. The Association has a duty to ensure as far as possible that its members discharge their ethical obligations and are afforded the professional rights necessary for the safeguarding and promotion of the rights of people who use social work services. BASW expects all employers to provide appropriate professional supervision for social workers and promote effective team work and communication. A workshop day aimed at those considering a move into independent social work or new to self employment. Rather, by outlining the general ethical principles, the aim is to encourage social workers across the UK to reflect on the challenges and dilemmas that face them and make ethically informed decisions about how to act in each particular case in accordance with the values of the profession. Principles are essential norms in a system of thought or belief, which form the basis of reasoning in that system. Social workers should strive to create conditions in employing agencies and in their countries where the principles of the Code are discussed, evaluated and upheld in practice. Senior Lecturer, Sheffield Hallam. Social workers should take responsibility for ensuring they have access to professional supervision and discussion which supports them to reflect and make sound professional judgements based on good practice. They should endeavour to seek changes in policies, procedures, improvements to services or working conditions as guided by the ethics of the profession. The Anti-Poverty Practice Guide for Social Work, IFSW and other international social work organisations, Influencing social work policy in the Commonwealth, Practice, policy and education groups (PPEGs), Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for Independents, Umbrella service companies & tax avoidance scheme investigations, Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF), Practice Educator Professional Standards (PEPS) 2020, Support for newly-qualified social workers, The international definition of social work (2014)*, Professional Support Service: Access support, Professional Support Service: Frequently Asked Questions, Copyright © 2021 British Association of Social Workers. Contact: Luke Geoghegan, Policy Team In an ethical dilemma, any of the possible actions or responses the social worker can make inevitably requires the breaching or compromise of a least one ethical principle. It offers a set of values, principles and standards to guide decision-making and everyday professional conduct of social workers. The National Social Work Competency Framework . First published: January 2012 Standards 3 and 5, The Professional Standards (Social Work England, 2019) state the ethical conduct that is expected of social workers in record keeping and technology use (including social media). The practice principles are not intended to be exhaustive as some ethical challenges and problems facing social workers in practice are common and others are specific to particular countries and settings. Social workers should communicate effectively and work in partnership with individuals, families, groups, communities and other agencies. The ethical practice principles apply across the UK but they are not intended to be exhaustive or to constitute detailed prescription. In social work, ‘values’ can be regarded as particular types of beliefs that people hold about what is regarded as worthy or valuable. They should engage in ethical debate with their colleagues and employers to share knowledge and take responsibility for making ethically informed decisions. Research Ethics for Counsellors, Nurses & Social Workers is designed to help you make the best start in your research career. The secondary research method I used was semi-structured interviews with social work professionals. The Code of Ethics states the values and ethical principles on which the profession is based. Social workers should be prepared to challenge discriminatory, ineffective and unjust policies, procedures and practice. E-mail: s.j.banks@durham.ac.uk. Standards can also be divided into two kinds, although often they are not clearly distinguished in codes of ethics: Ethical standards or rules – some general ‘do’s and don’ts’, sometimes framed as ‘standards’ for example: ‘do not permit knowledge to be used for discriminatory policies’; ‘protect all confidential information’. Ethics of social work don’t work in councils Help social workers serve the law, not their employers Academic Michael Preston-Shoot points to the areas of learning that need improvement if child... By Michael Preston-Shoot on June 18, 2010 in Child safeguarding, Children, Legal, Workforce. Aspects of control and dominance are inevitable in the work. Social workers should strive to carry out the stated aims of their employers or commissioners, provided they are consistent with the Code of Ethics. They should value and respect the contribution of colleagues from other disciplines. They help in making sound judgments and decisions when dealing with all segments of the population regardless of the clients’ religion, race, or ethnicity. In the context of professional practice, the use of the term ‘belief’ reflects the status that values have as stronger than mere opinions or preferences. The term ‘ethics’ may be used in a singular sense to refer to the study of right and wrong norms of behaviour, good and bad qualities of character; or in a plural sense, to refer to the actual norms and qualities. Social workers should recognise that people using social work services have the right to take risks and should enable them to identify and manage potential and actual risk, while seeking to ensure that their behaviour does not harm themselves or other people. People who use social work services may be individuals (children, young people or adults), families or other groups or communities. Social work in its various forms addresses the multiple, complex transactions between people and their environments. Ethics in Social Work, Statement of Principles This is the IASSW version of the Global Social Work Statement of Ethical Principles which was unanimously adopted at the General Assembly of IASSW on 5th July 2018 in Dublin, Ireland. Human rights and social justice serve as the motivation and justification for social work action. In social work one is forced to make decisions that involve ethical judgements. Ethical Case Studies. The profession has an obligation to articulate its basic values, ethical principles, and ethical standards. Social work grew out of humanitarian and democratic ideals, and its values are based on respect for the equality, worth, and dignity of all people. Share. The Association has a duty to ensure as far as possible that its members discharge their ethical obligations and are afforded the professional rights necessary for the safeguarding and promotion of the rights of people who use social work services. Social workers should reflect and critically evaluate their practice and be aware of their impact on others. * The definition was revised in 2014. Author: The Policy, Ethics and Human Rights Committee Ethical conflicts, and the moral distress which they may cause, can give rise to unease, guilt, and burnout (Raines 2000). The British Association of Social Workers is the professional association for social workers in the United Kingdom (UK). "Social work is a practice-based profession and an academic discipline that promotes social change and development, social cohesion, and the empowerment and liberation of people. They should act with integrity and treat people with compassion, empathy and care. Social workers have a responsibility to promote social justice, in relation to society generally, and in relation to the people with whom they work. The Code of Ethics for Social Work Social workers have a responsibility to promote and work to the Code of Ethics in carrying out their obligations to people who use social work services, to their employers, to one another, to colleagues in other disciplines and to society. As part of the social work values outlined in the NASW Code of Ethics, each social worker must practice within his or her scope of competence and avoid misrepresenting his or her skills or experience to potential clients. Social workers should ascertain and respect, as far as possible, each individual’s preferences, wishes and involvement in decision making, whether or not they or other persons have powers to make decisions on the person’s behalf. Social workers should give people the information they need to make informed choices and decisions. Interventions also include agency administration, community organisation and engaging in social and political action to impact social policy and economic development. Identifying and developing strengths Social workers should focus on the strengths of all individuals, groups and communities and thus promote their empowerment. Social workers should recognise the limits of their practice and seek advice or refer to another professional if necessary to ensure they work in a safe and effective manner. BASW expects employers to ensure social workers’ learning and development needs are met and seek adequate resources to do so. Her book, Ethics and Values in Social Work was published by Macmillan in 1995. Social workers need to acknowledge the impact of their own informal and coercive power and that of the organisations involved. Goldstein (1987) referred to this as the ‘neglected moral link’ in social work practice. Although the subject matter of ethics is often said to be human welfare, the bigger picture also includes the flourishing of animals and the whole ecosystem. They should challenge the abuse of power and the exclusion of people from decisions that affect them. The 1996 NASW Delegate Assembly approved the social work Code of Ethics, with revisions made in 2017.Codified as a resource for social work values and professional conduct, the code consists of four sections: a summary of the core values and mission of social work; a guide to navigating ethical dilemmas and issues; a description of the ethical principles that inform social work practice; … These decisions are not always easy – especially when two guiding principles come into conflict. The Routledge Handbook of Social Work Ethics and Values is a comprehensive exploration and assessment of current and future issues facing social work practice and education. Social workers should contribute to the education and training of colleagues and students by sharing knowledge and practice wisdom. It recognises the complexity of interactions between human beings and their environment, and the capacity of people both to be affected by and to alter the multiple influences upon them including biopsychosocial factors. They should ensure that services are offered and delivered in a culturally appropriate manner. The professional association for social work and social workers, The Anti-Poverty Practice Guide for Social Work, IFSW and other international social work organisations, Influencing social work policy in the Commonwealth, Practice, policy and education groups (PPEGs), Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for Independents, Umbrella service companies & tax avoidance scheme investigations, Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF), Practice Educator Professional Standards (PEPS) 2020, Support for newly-qualified social workers, Professional Support Service: Access support, Professional Support Service: Frequently Asked Questions, Copyright © 2021 British Association of Social Workers. The social workers Code of Ethics are at the core of the profession. Principles have a much broader scope than rules (or ‘standards’), tending to apply to all people in all circumstances (although in the case of social work, principles often refer to ‘all service users’). Social workers have a responsibility to respect and uphold the values and principles of the profession and act in a reliable, honest and trustworthy manner. Making considered professional judgements Social workers should make judgements based on balanced and considered reasoning, maintaining awareness of the impact of their own values, prejudices and conflicts of interest on their practice and on other people. Rationale: Social workers often practice within institutions or organizations that have goals, policies, or environments that are not driven by social work values. The following is an outline of the etiology of its creation and major points. Challenge ethics and values that negatively affect practice You should constructively challenge colleagues when you believe their ethics and values are negatively affecting their methods in social work practice. The Code is also supported by other BASW policy documents. This is an accessible and well-structured read. Ethics and values in social care research Ethics and values are a fundamental part of the way people work in social care, so much so that in social work they are one of the nine capabilities within the Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF). On the occasion of National Social Work Week 2005, the Canadian Association of Social Workers (CASW) adopted a new Code of Ethics and published Guidelines for Ethical Practice to serve as a companion document to the Code. Updated: October 2014. It is understood that social work in the 21st century is dynamic and evolving, and therefore no definition should be regarded as exhaustive. For good reasons, the ethics of care perspective is compatible with the social work profession's overriding concern about human well-being, relationships, and interdependency. In codes of ethics principles are often divided into two kinds: Ethical principles – general statements of ethical principles underpinning the work, relating to attitudes, rights and duties about human welfare, for example: ‘respect for the autonomy of service users’; ‘promotion of human welfare’. Social work utilises a variety of skills, techniques, and activities consistent with its holistic focus on persons and their environments. Social work relationships should be based on people’s rights to respect, privacy, reliability and confidentiality. BASW’s Code of Ethics first adopted in 1975, has been revised and updated on several occasions. Social workers should ensure the sharing of information is subject to ethical requirements in respect of privacy and confidentiality across agencies and professions, and within a multi-purpose agency. Its mission is to enable all people to develop their full potential, enrich their lives, and prevent dysfunction. Reflect on recent decisions you’ve made Social work is an interrelated system of values, theory and practice. The Code of Ethics states the values and ethical principles on which the profession is based. The full text is available at the NASW website. The Code is binding on all social workers who are BASW members in all roles, sectors and settings in the UK. Working in solidarity Social workers, individually, collectively and with others have a duty to challenge social conditions that contribute to social exclusion, stigmatisation or subjugation, and work towards an inclusive society. The social work profession draws on theories of human development and behaviour and social systems to analyse complex situations and to facilitate individual, organisational, social and cultural changes. Into conflict professional knowledge and experience to engage in ethical debate with their and. 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