Professional Organizations' Codes of Ethics
On Supervision in Psychotherapy and Counseling
By Ofer Zur, Ph.D.
This article is part of online courses on Supervision.
It covers the aspects of supervision that are cited in the professional organizations' codes of ethics.
Table Of Contents
1. American Art Therapy Association (AATA) - (2003)
2. American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) - (2012)
3. American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC) -(2012)
4. American Counseling Association (ACA) - (2005)
5. American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) - (2010)
6. American Psychological Association (APA) - (2002)
7. Association of State And Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB) - (2005)
8. California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) - (2011)
9. Canadian Counseling Association (CCA) - (2007)
10. Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) - (2000)
11. Feminist Therapy Institute (FTI) - (1999)
12. National Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) - (2004)
13. National Association of Social Workers (NASW) - (2008)
14. National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) - (2005)
15. Northamerica Association of Masters in Psychology (NAMP) - (2000)
16. United States Association for Body Psychotherapy (USABP) - (2007)
17. A note on Supervision and Dual Relationships
The Current Codes of Ethics, Verbatim
1. American Art Therapy Association (AATA) - (2003)
Section 2 states:
2.3. Art therapists do not disclose confidential information for the purposes of consultation and supervision without client's explicit consent unless there is reason to believe that the client or others are in immediate, severe danger to health or life. Any such disclosure must be consistent with laws that pertain to the welfare of the client, family, and the general public.
Section 5 states:
5.5. Art therapists do not engage in any relationship with clients, students, interns, trainees, supervisees, employees, research participants, or colleagues that is exploitative by its nature.
Section 6 states:
6.5. When working with people from cultures different from their own, art therapists engage in culturally sensitive supervision, seek assistance from members of that culture, and make a referral to a professional who is knowledgeable about the culture when it is in the best interest of the client to do so.
Section 7 states:
7.0 RESPONSIBILITY TO STUDENTS AND SUPERVISEES
Art therapists instruct their students using accurate, current, and scholarly information and will foster the professional growth of students and advisees.
7.1. Art therapists as teachers, supervisors, and researchers maintain high standards of scholarship and present accurate information.
7.2. Art therapists are aware of their influential position with respect to students and supervisees, and they avoid exploiting the trust and dependency of such persons. Art therapists, therefore, shall not engage in a therapeutic relationship with their students or supervisees.
7.3. Art therapists take reasonable steps to ensure that students, employees or supervisees do not perform or present themselves as competent to perform professional services beyond their education, training, and level of experience.
7.4. Art therapists who act as supervisors are responsible for maintaining the quality of their supervision skills and obtaining consultation or supervision for their work as supervisors whenever appropriate.
7.5. Art therapists do not require students or supervisees to disclose personal information in course- or program-related activities, either orally or in writing, regarding sexual history, history of abuse and neglect, psychological treatment, and relationships with parents, peers, spouses or significant others, except when (1) the program or training facility has clearly identified this requirement in its admissions and program materials or (2) the information is necessary to evaluate or obtain assistance for students whose personal problems could reasonably be judged to be preventing them from performing their training or professional related activities in a competent manner or whose personal problems could reasonably be judged to pose a threat to the students or others.
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2. American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) - (2012)
The Preamble states:
Preamble: The Board of Directors of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) hereby promulgates, pursuant to Article 2, Section 2.01.3 of the Association's Bylaws, the Revised AAMFT Code of Ethics, effective July 1, 2012.
The AAMFT strives to honor the public trust in marriage and family therapists by setting standards for ethical practice as described in this Code. The ethical standards define professional expectations and are enforced by the AAMFT Ethics Committee. The absence of an explicit reference to a specific behavior or situation in the Code does not mean that the behavior is ethical or unethical. The standards are not exhaustive. Marriage and family therapists who are uncertain about the ethics of a particular course of action are encouraged to seek counsel from consultants, attorneys, supervisors, colleagues, or other appropriate authorities.
Both law and ethics govern the practice of marriage and family therapy. When making decisions regarding professional behavior, marriage and family therapists must consider the AAMFT Code of Ethics and applicable laws and regulations. If the AAMFT Code of Ethics prescribes a standard higher than that required by law, marriage and family therapists must meet the higher standard of the AAMFT Code of Ethics. Marriage and family therapists comply with the mandates of law, but make known their commitment to the AAMFT Code of Ethics and take steps to resolve the conflict in a responsible manner. The AAMFT supports legal mandates for reporting of alleged unethical conduct.
The AAMFT Code of Ethics is binding on members of AAMFT in all membership categories, all AAMFT Approved Supervisors and all applicants for membership or the Approved Supervisor designation. AAMFT members have an obligation to be familiar with the AAMFT Code of Ethics and its application to their professional services. Lack of awareness or misunderstanding of an ethical standard is not a defense to a charge of unethical conduct.
The process for filing, investigating, and resolving complaints of unethical conduct is described in the current AAMFT Procedures for Handling Ethical Matters. Persons accused are considered innocent by the Ethics Committee until proven guilty, except as otherwise provided, and are entitled to due process. If an AAMFT member resigns in anticipation of, or during the course of, an ethics investigation, the Ethics Committee will complete its investigation. Any publication of action taken by the Association will include the fact that the member attempted to resign during the investigation.
Section 2 states:
2.6 Marriage and family therapists, when consulting with colleagues or referral sources, do not share confidential information that could reasonably lead to the identification of a client, research participant, supervisee, or other person with whom they have a confidential relationship unless they have obtained the prior written consent of the client, research participant, supervisee, or other person with whom they have a confidential relationship. Information may be shared only to the extent necessary to achieve the purposes of the consultation.
Section 3 states:
3.5 Marriage and family therapists, as presenters, teachers, supervisors, consultants and researchers, are dedicated to high standards of scholarship, present accurate information, and disclose potential conflicts of interest.
3.8 Marriage and family therapists do not engage in sexual or other forms of harassment of clients, students, trainees, supervisees, employees, colleagues, or research subjects.
3.9 Marriage and family therapists do not engage in the exploitation of clients, students, trainees, supervisees, employees, colleagues, or research subjects.
Principle 4 states:
Principle IV: Responsibility to Students and Supervisees
Marriage and family therapists do not exploit the trust and dependency of students and supervisees.
4.1 Marriage and family therapists who are in a supervisory role are aware of their influential positions with respect to students and supervisees, and they avoid exploiting the trust and dependency of such persons. Therapists, therefore, make every effort to avoid conditions and multiple relationships that could impair professional objectivity or increase the risk of exploitation. When the risk of impairment or exploitation exists due to conditions or multiple roles, therapists take appropriate precautions.
4.2 Marriage and family therapists do not provide therapy to current students or supervisees.
4.3 Marriage and family therapists do not engage in sexual intimacy with students or supervisees during the evaluative or training relationship between the therapist and student or supervisee. If a supervisor engages in sexual activity with a former supervisee, the burden of proof shifts to the supervisor to demonstrate that there has been no exploitation or injury to the supervisee.
4.4 Marriage and family therapists do not permit students or supervisees to perform or to hold themselves out as competent to perform professional services beyond their training, level of experience, and competence.
4.5 Marriage and family therapists take reasonable measures to ensure that services provided by supervisees are professional.
4.6 Marriage and family therapists avoid accepting as supervisees or students those individuals with whom a prior or existing relationship could compromise the therapist’s objectivity. When such situations cannot be avoided, therapists take appropriate precautions to maintain objectivity. Examples of such relationships include, but are not limited to, those individuals with whom the therapist has a current or prior sexual, close personal, immediate familial, or therapeutic relationship.
4.7 Marriage and family therapists do not disclose supervisee confidences except by written authorization or waiver, or when mandated or permitted by law. In educational or training settings where there are multiple supervisors, disclosures are permitted only to other professional colleagues, administrators, or employers who share responsibility for training of the supervisee. Verbal authorization will not be sufficient except in emergency situations, unless prohibited by law.
Principle 7 states:
Principle VII: Financial Arrangements
Marriage and family therapists make financial arrangements with clients, third-party payors, and supervisees that are reasonably understandable and conform to accepted professional practices.
7.2 Prior to entering into the therapeutic or supervisory relationship, marriage and family therapists clearly disclose and explain to clients and supervisees: (a) all financial arrangements and fees related to professional services, including charges for canceled or missed appointments; (b) the use of collection agencies or legal measures for nonpayment; and (c) the procedure for obtaining payment from the client, to the extent allowed by law, if payment is denied by the third-party payor. Once services have begun, therapists provide reasonable notice of any changes in fees or other charges.
7.4 Marriage and family therapists represent facts truthfully to clients, third-party payors, and supervisees regarding services rendered.
7.5 Marriage and family therapists ordinarily refrain from accepting goods and services from clients in return for services rendered. Bartering for professional services may be conducted only if: (a) the supervisee or client requests it; (b) the relationship is not exploitative; (c) the professional relationship is not distorted; and (d) a clear written contract is established.
Section 8 states:
8.7 Marriage and family therapists make certain that the qualifications of their employees or supervisees are represented in a manner that is not false, misleading, or deceptive.
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3. American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC) -(2012)
PRINCIPLE V SUPERVISEE, STUDENT & EMPLOYEE RELATIONSHIPS:
As members of AAPC we have an ethical concern for the integrity and welfare of our supervisees, students and employees. These relationships are maintained on a professional and confidential basis. We recognize our influential position with regard to both current and former supervisees, students and employees, and avoid exploiting their trust and dependency. We make every effort to avoid dual relationships with such persons that could impair our judgment or increase the risk of personal and/or financial exploitation.
We do not engage in ongoing counseling relationships with current supervisees, students and employees.
- We do not engage in sexual or other harassment of supervisees, students, employees, research subjects or colleagues.
- All forms of sexual behavior, as defined in Principle III.G, with our supervisees, students, research subjects and employees (except in employee situations involving domestic partners) are unethical.
- We advise our students, supervisees, and employees against offering or engaging in, or holding themselves out as competent to engage in, professional services beyond their training, level of experience and competence.
- Supervisors have a responsibility to provide timely and fair evaluations of their supervisees and employees.
- We do not harass or dismiss an employee who has acted in a reasonable, responsible and ethical manner to protect, or intervene on behalf of, a client or other member of the public or another employee.
- To protect the public, employers and supervisors who have dismissed employees and supervisees for ethical cause must report that fact as part of any official report of service or enrollment in a pastoral counseling center or training program.
- We are sensitive to the requirements of an organization with which we are affiliated or for whom we are working. In case of conflict with the Code of Ethics and the organization, we clarify the nature of the conflict, make known our commitment to the Code of Ethics, and to the extent feasible, resolve the conflict in a way that permits adherence to the Code.
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4. American Counseling Association (ACA) - (2005)
Section A states:
Section A: The Counseling Relationship: Introduction
Counselors encourage client growth and development in ways that foster the interest and welfare of clients and promote formation of healthy relationships. Counselors actively attempt to understand the diverse cultural backgrounds of the clients they serve. Counselors also explore their own cultural identities and how these affect their values and beliefs about the counseling process. Counselors are encouraged to contribute to society by devoting a portion of their professional activity to services for which there is little or no financial return (pro bono publico).
A.2. Informed Consent in the Counseling Relationship
(See A.12.g., B.5., B.6.b., E.3., E.13.b.,F.1.c., G.2.a.)
A.2.b. Types of Information Needed
Counselors explicitly explain to clients the nature of all services provided. They inform clients about issues such as, but not limited to, the following: the purposes, goals, techniques, procedures, limitations, potential risks, and benefits of services; the counselor's qualifications, credentials, and relevant experience; continuation of services upon the incapacitation or death of a counselor; and other pertinent information.
Counselors take steps to ensure that clients understand the implications of diagnosis, the intended use of tests and reports, fees, and billing arrangements.
Clients have the right to confidentiality and to be provided with an explanation of its limitations (including how supervisors and/or treatment team professionals are involved); to obtain clear information about their records; to participate in the ongoing counseling plans; and to refuse any services or modality change and to be advised of the consequences of such refusal.
A.4. Avoiding Harm and Imposing Values
A.4.a. Avoiding Harm
Counselors act to avoid harming their clients, trainees, and research participants and to minimize or to remedy unavoidable or unanticipated harm.
A.9. End-of-Life Care for Terminally Ill Clients
Counselors who provide services to terminally ill individuals who are considering hastening their own deaths have the option of breaking or not breaking confidentiality, depending on applicable laws and the specific circumstances of the situation and after seeking consultation or supervision from appropriate professional and legal parties. (See B.5.c., B.7.c.)
A.12. Technology Applications
A.12.g. Technology and Informed Consent
As part of the process of establishing informed consent, counselors do the following:
1. Address issues related to the difficulty of maintaining the confidentiality of electronically transmitted communications.
2. Inform clients of all colleagues, supervisors, and employees, such as Informational Technology (IT) administrators, who might have authorized or unauthorized access to electronic transmissions.
3. Urge clients to be aware of all authorized or unauthorized users including family members and fellow employees who have access to any technology clients may use in the counseling process.
4. Inform clients of pertinent legal rights and limitations governing the practice of a profession over state lines or international boundaries.
5. Use encrypted Web sites and email communications to help ensure confidentiality when possible.
6. When the use of encryption is not possible, counselors notify clients of this fact and limit electronic transmissions to general communications that are not client specific.
7. Inform clients if and for how long archival storage of transaction records are maintained.
8. Discuss the possibility of technology failure and alternate methods of service delivery.
9. Inform clients of emergency procedures, such as calling 911 or a local crisis hotline, when the counselor is not available.
10. Discuss time zone differences, local customs, and cultural or language differences that might impact service delivery.
11. Inform clients when technology-assisted distance counseling services are not covered by insurance. (See A.2.)
Section B- Confidentiality, Privileged Communication, and Privacy states:
Counselors recognize that trust is a cornerstone of the counseling relationship. Counselors aspire to earn the trust of clients by creating an ongoing partnership, establishing and upholding appropriate boundaries, and maintaining confidentiality. Counselors communicate the parameters of confidentiality in a culturally competent manner.
B.3. Information Shared With Others
Counselors make every effort to ensure that privacy and confidentiality of clients are maintained by subordinates, including employees, supervisees, students, clerical assistants, and volunteers. (See F.1.c.)
B.6.c. Permission to Observe
Counselors obtain permission from clients prior to observing counseling sessions, reviewing session transcripts, or viewing recordings of sessions with supervisors, faculty, peers, or others within the training environment.
B.7. Research and Training
B.7.e. Agreement for Identification
Identification of clients, students, or supervisees in a presentation or publication is permissible only when they have reviewed the material and agreed to its presentation or publication. (See G.4.d.)
Section C- Professional Responsibility states:
Counselors aspire to open, honest, and accurate communication in dealing with the public and other professionals. They practice in a nondiscriminatory manner within the boundaries of professional and personal competence and have a responsibility to abide by the ACA Code of Ethics. Counselors actively participate in local, state, and national associations that foster the development and improvement of counseling. Counselors advocate to promote change at the individual, group, institutional, and societal levels that improve the quality of life for individuals and groups and remove potential barriers to the provision or access of appropriate services being offered. Counselors have a responsibility to the public to engage in counseling practices that are based on rigorous research methodologies. In addition, counselors engage in self-care activities to maintain and promote their emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual well-being to best meet their professional responsibilities.
C.2. Professional Competence
C.2.a. Boundaries of Competence
Counselors practice only within the boundaries of their competence, based on their education, training, supervised experience, state and national professional credentials, and appropriate professional experience. Counselors gain knowledge, personal awareness, sensitivity, and skills pertinent to working with a diverse client population. (See A.9.b., C.4.e., E.2., F.2., F.11.b.)
C.2.b. New Specialty Areas of Practice
Counselors practice in specialty areas new to them only after appropriate education, training, and supervised experience. While developing skills in new specialty areas, counselors take steps to ensure the competence of their work and to protect others from possible harm. (See F.6.f.)
C.2.c. Qualified for Employment
Counselors accept employment only for positions for which they are qualified by education, training, supervised experience, state and national professional credentials, and appropriate professional experience. Counselors hire for professional counseling positions only individuals who are qualified and competent for those positions.
C.2.d. Monitor Effectiveness
Counselors continually monitor their effectiveness as professionals and take steps to improve when necessary. Counselors in private practice take reasonable steps to seek peer supervision as needed to evaluate their efficacy as counselors.
Counselors are alert to the signs of impairment from their own physical, mental, or emotional problems and refrain from offering or providing professional services when such impairment is likely to harm a client or others. They seek assistance for problems that reach the level of professional impairment, and, if necessary, they limit, suspend, or terminate their professional responsibilities until such time it is determined that they may safely resume their work. Counselors assist colleagues or supervisors in recognizing their own professional impairment and provide consultation and assistance when warranted with colleagues or supervisors showing signs of impairment and intervene as appropriate to prevent imminent harm to clients. (See A.11.b., F.8.b.)
C.3. Advertising and Soliciting Clients
C.3.d. Recruiting Through Employment
Counselors do not use their places of employment or institutional affiliation to recruit or gain clients, supervisees, or consultees for their private practices.
C.3.f. Promoting to Those Served
Counselors do not use counseling, teaching, training, or supervisory relationships to promote their products or training events in a manner that is deceptive or would exert undue influence on individuals who may be vulnerable. However, counselor educators may adopt textbooks they have authored for instructional purposes.
Counselors do not condone or engage in discrimination based on age, culture, disability, ethnicity, race, religion/ spirituality, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status/ partnership, language preference, socioeconomic status, or any basis proscribed by law. Counselors do not discriminate against clients, students, employees, supervisees, or research participants in a manner that has a negative impact on these persons.
Section E- Evaluation, Assessment, and Interpretation states:
Counselors use assessment instruments as one component of the counseling process, taking into account the client personal and cultural context. Counselors promote the
well-being of individual clients or groups of clients by developing and using appropriate
educational, psychological, and career assessment instruments.
E.2. Competence to Use and Interpret Assessment Instruments E.2.a. Limits of Competence
Counselors utilize only those testing and assessment services for which they have been trained and are competent. Counselors using technology-assisted test interpretations are trained in the construct being measured and the specific instrument being used prior to using its technology-based application. Counselors take reasonable measures to ensure the proper use of psychological and career assessment techniques by persons under their supervision. (See A.12.)
Section F- Supervision, Training, and Teaching states:
Counselors aspire to foster meaningful and respectful professional relationships and to maintain appropriate boundaries with supervisees and students. Counselors have theoretical and pedagogical foundations for their work and aim to be fair, accurate, and honest in their assessments of counselors-in-training.
F.1. Counselor Supervision and Client Welfare
F.1.a. Client Welfare
A primary obligation of counseling supervisors is to monitor the services provided by other counselors or counselors-in-training. Counseling supervisors monitor client welfare and supervisee clinical performance and professional development. To fulfill these obligations, supervisors meet regularly with supervisees to review case notes, samples of clinical work, or live observations. Supervisees have a responsibility to understand and follow the ACA Code of Ethics.
F.1.b. Counselor Credentials
Counseling supervisors work to ensure that clients are aware of the qualifications of the supervisees who render services to the clients. (See A.2.b.)
F.1.c. Informed Consent and Client Rights
Supervisors make supervisees aware of client rights including the protection of client privacy and confidentiality in the counseling relationship. Supervisees provide clients with professional disclosure information and inform them of how the supervision process influences the limits of confidentiality. Supervisees make clients aware of who will have access to records of the counseling relationship and how these records will be used. (See A.2.b., B.1.d.)
F.2. Counselor Supervision Competence
F.2.a. Supervisor Preparation
Prior to offering clinical supervision services, counselors are trained in supervision methods and techniques. Counselors who offer clinical supervision services regularly pursue continuing education activities including both counseling and supervision topics and skills. (See C.2.a., C.2.f.)
F.2.b. Multicultural Issues/Diversity in Supervision
Counseling supervisors are aware of and address the role of multiculturalism/diversity in the supervisory relationship.
F.3. Supervisory Relationships
F.3.a. Relationship Boundaries with Supervisees
Counseling supervisors clearly define and maintain ethical professional, personal, and social relationships with their supervisees. Counseling supervisors avoid nonprofessional relationships with current supervisees. If supervisors must assume other professional roles (e.g., clinical and administrative supervisor, instructor) with supervisees, they work to minimize potential conflicts and explain to supervisees the expectations and responsibilities associated with each role. They do not engage in any form of nonprofessional interaction that may compromise the supervisory relationship.
F.3.b. Sexual Relationships
Sexual or romantic interactions or relationships with current supervisees are prohibited.
F.3.c. Sexual Harassment
Counseling supervisors do not condone or subject supervisees to sexual harassment. (See C.6.a.)
F.3.d. Close Relatives and Friends
Counseling supervisors avoid accepting close relatives, romantic partners, or friends as supervisees.
F.3.e. Potentially Beneficial Relationships
Counseling supervisors are aware of the power differential in their relationships with supervisees. If they believe nonprofessional relationships with a supervisee may be potentially beneficial to the supervisee, they take precautions similar to those taken by counselors when working with clients. Examples of potentially beneficial interactions or relationships include attending a formal ceremony; hospital visits; providing support during a stressful event; or mutual membership in a professional association, organization, or community.
Counseling supervisors engage in open discussions with supervisees when they consider entering into relationships with them outside of their roles as clinical and/or administrative supervisors. Before engaging in nonprofessional relationships, supervisors discuss with supervisees and document the rationale for such interactions, potential benefits or drawbacks, and anticipated consequences for the supervisee. Supervisors clarify the specific nature and limitations of the additional role(s) they will have with the supervisee.
F.4. Supervisor Responsibilities
F.4.a. Informed Consent for Supervision
Supervisors are responsible for incorporating into their supervision the principles of informed consent and participation. Supervisors inform supervisees of the policies and procedures to which they are to adhere and the mechanisms for due process appeal of individual supervisory actions.
F.4.b. Emergencies and Absences
Supervisors establish and communicate to supervisees procedures for contacting them or, in their absence, alternative on-call supervisors to assist in handling crises.
F.4.c. Standards for Supervisees
Supervisors make their supervisees aware of professional and ethical standards and legal responsibilities. Supervisors of postdegree counselors encourage these counselors to adhere to professional standards of practice. (See C.1.)
F.4.d. Termination of the Supervisory Relationship
Supervisors or supervisees have the right to terminate the supervisory relationship with adequate notice. Reasons for withdrawal are provided to the other party. When cultural, clinical, or professional issues are crucial to the viability of the supervisory relationship, both parties make efforts to resolve differences. When termination is warranted, supervisors make appropriate referrals to possible alternative supervisors.
F.5. Counseling Supervision Evaluation, Remediation, and Endorsement
Supervisors document and provide supervisees with ongoing performance appraisal and evaluation feedback and schedule periodic formal evaluative sessions throughout the supervisory relationship.
Through ongoing evaluation and appraisal, supervisors are aware of the limitations of supervisees that might impede performance. Supervisors assist supervisees in securing remedial assistance when needed. They recommend dismissal from training programs, applied counseling settings, or state or voluntary professional credentialing processes when those supervisees are unable to provide competent professional services.
Supervisors seek consultation and document their decisions to dismiss or refer supervisees for assistance. They ensure that supervisees are aware of options available to them to address such decisions. (See C.2.g.)
F.5.c. Counseling for Supervisees
If supervisees request counseling, supervisors provide them with acceptable referrals. Counselors do not provide counseling services to supervisees. Supervisors address interpersonal competencies in terms of the impact of these issues on clients, the supervisory relationship, and professional functioning. (See F.3.a.)
Supervisors endorse supervisees for certification, licensure, employment, or completion of an academic or training program only when they believe supervisees are qualified for the endorsement. Regardless of qualifications, supervisors do not endorse supervisees whom they believe to be impaired in any way that would interfere with the performance of the duties associated with the endorsement.
F.6. Responsibilities of Counselor Educators
F.6.a. Counselor Educators
Counselor educators who are responsible for developing, implementing, and supervising educational programs are skilled as teachers and practitioners. They are knowledgeable regarding the ethical, legal, and regulatory aspects of the profession, are skilled in applying that knowledge, and make students and supervisees aware of their responsibilities. Counselor educators conduct counselor education and training programs in an ethical manner and serve as role models for professional behavior. (See C.1., C.2.a., C.2.c.)
F.6.b. Infusing Multicultural Issues/Diversity
Counselor educators infuse material related to multiculturalism/diversity into all courses and workshops for the development of professional counselors.
F.6.c. Integration of Study and Practice
Counselor educators establish education and training programs that integrate academic study and supervised practice.
F.6.d. Teaching Ethics
Counselor educators make students and supervisees aware of the ethical responsibilities and standards of the profession and the ethical responsibilities of students to the profession. Counselor educators infuse ethical considerations throughout the curriculum. (See C.1.)
F.6.e. Peer Relationships
Counselor educators make every effort to ensure that the rights of peers are not compromised when students or supervisees lead counseling groups or provide clinical supervision. Counselor educators take steps to ensure that students and supervisees understand they have the same ethical obligations as counselor educators, trainers, and supervisors.
F.6.f. Innovative Theories and Techniques
When counselor educators teach counseling techniques/procedures that are innovative, without an empirical foundation, or without a well-grounded theoretical foundation, they define the counseling techniques/procedures as "unproven" or "developing" and explain to students the potential risks and ethical considerations of using such techniques/procedures.
F.6.g. Field Placements
Counselor educators develop clear policies within their training programs regarding field placement and other clinical experiences. Counselor educators provide clearly stated roles and responsibilities for the student or supervisee, the site supervisor, and the program supervisor. They confirm that site supervisors are qualified to provide supervision and inform site supervisors of their professional and ethical responsibilities in this role.
F.6.h. Professional Disclosure
Before initiating counseling services, counselors-in-training disclose their status as students and explain how this status affects the limits of confidentiality. Counselor educators ensure that the clients at field placements are aware of the services rendered and the qualifications of the students and supervisees rendering those services. Students and supervisees obtain client permission before they use any information concerning the counseling relationship in the training process. (See A.2.b.)
F.7. Student Welfare
Counselor educators recognize that orientation is a developmental process that continues throughout the educational and clinical training of students. Counseling faculty provide prospective students with information about the counselor education program's expectations:
1. the type and level of skill and knowledge acquisition required for successful completion of the training;
2. program training goals, objectives, and mission, and subject matter to be covered;
3. bases for evaluation;
4. training components that encourage self-growth or self-disclosure as part of the training process;
5. the type of supervision settings and requirements of the sites for required clinical field experiences;
6. student and supervisee evaluation and dismissal policies and procedures; and
7. up-to-date employment prospects for graduates.
F.7.b. Self-Growth Experiences
Counselor education programs delineate requirements for self-disclosure or self-growth experiences in their admission and program materials. Counselor educators use professional judgment when designing training experiences they conduct that require student and supervisee self-growth or self-disclosure. Students and supervisees are made aware of the ramifications their self-disclosure may have when counselors whose primary role as teacher, trainer, or supervisor requires acting on ethical obligations to the profession. Evaluative components of experiential training experiences explicitly delineate predetermined academic standards that are separate and do not depend on the student's level of self-disclosure. Counselor educators may require trainees to seek professional help to address any personal concerns that may be affecting their competency.
F.8. Student Responsibilities
F.8.a. Standards for Students
Counselors-in-training have a responsibility to understand and follow the ACA Code of Ethics and adhere to applicable laws, regulatory policies, and rules and policies governing professional staff behavior at the agency or placement setting. Students have the same obligation to clients as those required of professional counselors.
(See C.1., H.1.)
Counselors-in-training refrain from offering or providing counseling services when their physical, mental, or emotional problems are likely to harm a client or others. They are alert to the signs of impairment, seek assistance for problems, and notify their program supervisors when they are aware that they are unable to effectively provide services. In addition, they seek appropriate professional services for themselves to remediate the problems that are interfering with their ability to provide services to others. (See A.1., C.2.d., C.2.g.)
F.9. Evaluation and Remediation of Students
Counselors clearly state to students, prior to and throughout the training program, the levels of competency expected, appraisal methods, and timing of evaluations for both didactic and clinical competencies. Counselor educators provide students with ongoing performance appraisal and evaluation feedback throughout the training program.
Counselor educators, throughout ongoing evaluation and appraisal, are aware of and address the inability of some students to achieve counseling competencies that might impede performance.
1. assist students in securing remedial assistance when needed,
2. seek professional consultation and document their decision to dismiss or refer students for assistance, and
3. ensure that students have recourse in a timely manner to address decisions to require them to seek assistance or to dismiss them and provide students with due process according to institutional policies and procedures. (See C.2.g.)
F.9.c. Counseling for Students
If students request counseling or if counseling services are required as part of a remediation process, counselor educators provide acceptable referrals.
F. 10. Roles and Relationships Between Counselor Educators and Students
F.10.a. Sexual or Romantic Relationships
Sexual or romantic interactions or relationships with current students are prohibited.
F.10.b. Sexual Harassment
Counselor educators do not condone or subject students to sexual harassment. (See C.6.a.)
F.10.c. Relationships With Former Students
Counselor educators are aware of the power differential in the relationship between faculty and students. Faculty members foster open discussions with former students when considering engaging in a social, sexual, or other intimate relationship. Faculty members discuss with the former student how their former relationship may affect the change in relationship.
F.10.d. Nonprofessional Relationships
Counselor educators avoid nonprofessional or ongoing professional relationships with students in which there is a risk of potential harm to the student or that may compromise the training experience or grades assigned. In addition, counselor educators do not accept any form of professional services, fees, commissions, reimbursement, or remuneration from a site for student or supervisee placement.
F.10.e. Counseling Services
Counselor educators do not serve as counselors to current students unless this is a brief role associated with a training experience.
F.10.f. Potentially Beneficial Relationships
Counselor educators are aware of the power differential in the relationship between faculty and students. If they believe a nonprofessional relationship with a student may be potentially beneficial to the student, they take precautions similar to those taken by counselors when working with clients. Examples of potentially beneficial interactions or relationships include, but are not limited to, attending a formal ceremony; hospital visits; providing support during a stressful event; or mutual membership in a professional association, organization, or community. Counselor educators engage in open discussions with students when they consider entering into relationships with students outside of their roles as teachers and supervisors. They discuss with students the rationale for such interactions, the potential benefits and drawbacks, and the anticipated consequences for the student. Educators clarify the specific nature and limitations of the additional role(s) they will have with the student prior to engaging in a nonprofessional relationship. Nonprofessional relationships with students should be time-limited and initiated with student consent.
F.11. Multicultural/Diversity Competence in Counselor Education and Training Programs
F.11.a. Faculty Diversity
Counselor educators are committed to recruiting and retaining a diverse faculty.
F.11.b. Student Diversity
Counselor educators actively attempt to recruit and retain a diverse student body. Counselor educators demonstrate commitment to multicultural/diversity competence by recognizing and valuing diverse cultures and types of abilities students bring to the training experience. Counselor educators provide appropriate accommodations that enhance and support diverse student well-being and academic performance.
F.11.c. Multicultural/Diversity Competence
Counselor educators actively infuse multicultural/diversity competency in their training and supervision practices. They actively train students to gain awareness, knowledge, and skills in the competencies of multicultural practice. Counselor educators include
case examples, role-plays, discussion questions, and other classroom activities that promote and represent various cultural perspectives.
Section G- Research and Publication states:
Counselors who conduct research are encouraged to contribute to the knowledge base of the profession and promote a clearer understanding of the conditions that lead to a healthy and more just society. Counselors support efforts of researchers by participating fully and willingly whenever possible. Counselors minimize bias and respect diversity in designing and implementing research programs.
G.2. Rights of Research Participants (See A.2, A.7.)
G.2.c. Student/Supervisee Participation
Researchers who involve students or supervisees in research make clear to them that the decision regarding whether or not to participate in research activities does not affect one's academic standing or supervisory relationship. Students or supervisees who choose not to participate in educational research are provided with an appropriate alternative to fulfill their academic or clinical requirements.
G.5.e. Agreement of Contributors
Counselors who conduct joint research with colleagues or students/ supervisees establish agreements in advance regarding allocation of tasks, publication credit, and types of acknowledgment that will be received.
Section H- Resolving Ethical Issues states:
Counselors behave in a legal, ethical, and moral manner in the conduct of their professional work. They are aware that client protection and trust in the profession depend on a high level of professional conduct. They hold other counselors to the same standards and are willing to take appropriate action to ensure that these standards are upheld. Counselors strive to resolve ethical dilemmas with direct and open communication among all parties involved and seek consultation with colleagues andsupervisors when necessary. Counselors incorporate ethical practice into their daily professional work. They engage in ongoing professional development regarding current topics in ethical and legal issues in counseling.
H.2.e. Organizational Conflicts
If the demands of an organization with which counselors are affiliated pose a conflict with the ACA Code of Ethics, counselors specify the nature of such conflicts and express to their supervisors or other responsible officials their commitment to the ACA Code of Ethics. When possible, counselors work toward change within the organization to allow full adherence to the ACA Code of Ethics.In doing so, they address any confidentiality issues.
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5. American Mental Health Counselors Association - (AMHCA) - (2010)
Principle III. Commitment to Students, Supervisees and Employee Relationships
Mental health counselors have an ethical concern for the integrity and welfare of supervisees, students, and employees. These relationships typically include an evaluative component and therefore need to be maintained on a professional and confidential basis. Mental health counselors recognize the influential position they have with regard to both current and former supervisees, students and employees and avoid exploiting their trust and dependency.
a) Mental health counselors do not engage in ongoing counseling relationships with current supervisees, students and employees.
b) All forms of sexual behavior with supervisees, students and employees are unethical.
c) Mental health counselors do not engage in any form of harassment of supervisees, students, employees or colleagues.
d) Mental health counselor supervisors advise their supervisees, students and employees against holding themselves out to be competent to engage in professional services beyond their training, experience, or credentials.
e) With supervisees, students and employees, mental health counselors make every effort to avoid dual/multiple relationships that could bias their judgment or increase the risk of personal or financial exploitation. When a dual/multiple relationship cannot be avoided, mental health counselors take appropriate professional precautions to make sure that detrimental effects are minimized. Examples of such dual/multiple relationships include, but are not limited to, a supervisee who receives supervision as a benefit of employment.
f) Mental health counselors do not disclose supervisee confidences regarding client information except:
- ) To prevent clear and eminent danger to a person or persons.
- ) As mandated by law,
- ) as in mandated child or senior abuse reporting or
- ) where the counselor is a defendant in a civil, criminal or disciplinary action.
- ) or where there is a waiver of confidentiality obtained in writing prior to sucha release of information.
- ) In educational or training settings where only other professionals who will shareresponsibility for the training of the supervisee are present and formal writtenclient consent has been obtained for such disclosures for training purposes.
g) In the informed consent statement, students and mandated supervisees notify the client they are in supervision and provide their clients with the name and credentials of their supervisor, if requested.
h) Students and supervisees have the same ethical obligations to clients as those required of mental health counselors.
i) The primary obligation of supervisors is to monitor services provided by supervisees to ensure client welfare.
j) Supervisors are expected to monitor clinical performance of supervisees; including but not limited to regular meetings, review of case notes and records, direct observation of supervisee's clinical work via audio/video records, or live supervision.
k) Supervisors provide written informed consent prior to beginning a supervision relationship that documents business address and telephone number; list of degrees, license, and credentials/certifications held; areas of competence in clinical mental health counseling; training in supervision and experience providing supervision; model of or approach to supervision, including the role, objectives and goals of supervision, and modalities; evaluation procedures in the supervisory relationship; the limits and scope of confidentiality and privileged communication within the supervisory relationship; procedures for supervisory emergencies and supervisor absences; use of supervision agreements; and procedures for supervisee endorsement for certification and/or licensure, or employment to those whom are competent, ethical, and qualified.
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6. American Psychological Association (APA) - (2010)
The INTRODUCTION AND APPLICABILITY Section states:
This Ethics Code applies only to psychologists' activities that are part of their scientific, educational, or professional roles as psychologists. Areas covered include but are not limited to the clinical, counseling, and school practice of psychology; research; teaching; supervision of trainees; public service; policy development; social intervention; development of assessment instruments; conducting assessments; educational counseling; organizational consulting; forensic activities; program design and evaluation; and administration. This Ethics Code applies to these activities across a variety of contexts, such as in person, postal, telephone, internet, and other electronic transmissions. These activities shall be distinguished from the purely private conduct of psychologists, which is not within the purview of the Ethics Code.
Membership in the APA commits members and student affiliates to comply with the standards of the APA Ethics Code and to the rules and procedures used to enforce them. Lack of awareness or misunderstanding of an Ethical Standard is not itself a defense to a charge of unethical conduct.
The PREAMBLE states:
Psychologists are committed to increasing scientific and professional knowledge of behavior and people's understanding of themselves and others and to the use of such knowledge to improve the condition of individuals, organizations, and society. Psychologists respect and protect civil and human rights and the central importance of freedom of inquiry and expression in research, teaching, and publication. They strive to help the public in developing informed judgments and choices concerning human behavior. In doing so, they perform many roles, such as researcher, educator, diagnostician, therapist, supervisor, consultant, administrator, social interventionist, and expert witness. This Ethics Code provides a common set of principles and standards upon which psychologists build their professional and scientific work.
This Ethics Code is intended to provide specific standards to cover most situations encountered by psychologists. It has as its goals the welfare and protection of the individuals and groups with whom psychologists work and the education of members, students, and the public regarding ethical standards of the discipline.
Section 2 states:
2.01 Boundaries of Competence
(a) Psychologists provide services, teach, and conduct research with populations and in areas only within the boundaries of their competence, based on their education, training, supervised experience, consultation, study, or professional experience.
(b) Where scientific or professional knowledge in the discipline of psychology establishes that an understanding of factors associated with age, gender, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, language, or socioeconomic status is essential for effective implementation of their services or research, psychologists have or obtain the training, experience, consultation, or supervision necessary to ensure the competence of their services, or they make appropriate referrals, except as provided in Standard 2.02, Providing Services in Emergencies.
(c) Psychologists planning to provide services, teach, or conduct research involving populations, areas, techniques, or technologies new to them undertake relevant education, training, supervised experience, consultation, or study.
(e) In those emerging areas in which generally recognized standards for preparatory training do not yet exist, psychologists nevertheless take reasonable steps to ensure the competence of their work and to protect clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, organizational clients, and others from harm.
2.05 Delegation of Work to Others
Psychologists who delegate work to employees, supervisees, or research or teaching assistants or who use the services of others, such as interpreters, take reasonable steps to (1) avoid delegating such work to persons who have a multiple relationship with those being served that would likely lead to exploitation or loss of objectivity; (2) authorize only those responsibilities that such persons can be expected to perform competently on the basis of their education, training, or experience, either independently or with the level of supervision being provided; and (3) see that such persons perform these services competently. (See also Standards 2.02, Providing Services in Emergencies; 3.05, Multiple Relationships; 4.01, Maintaining Confidentiality; 9.01, Bases for Assessments; 9.02, Use of Assessments; 9.03, Informed Consent in Assessments; and 9.07, Assessment by Unqualified Persons.)
Section 3 states:
3. Human Relations
3.04 Avoiding Harm
Psychologists take reasonable steps to avoid harming their clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, organizational clients, and others with whom they work, and to minimize harm where it is foreseeable and unavoidable.
3.08 Exploitative Relationships
Psychologists do not exploit persons over whom they have supervisory, evaluative, or other authority such as clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, and employees. (See also Standards 3.05, Multiple Relationships; 6.04, Fees and Financial Arrangements; 6.05, Barter With Clients/Patients; 7.07, Sexual Relationships With Students and Supervisees; 10.05, Sexual Intimacies With Current Therapy Clients/Patients; 10.06, Sexual Intimacies With Relatives or Significant Others of Current Therapy Clients/Patients; 10.07, Therapy With Former Sexual Partners; and 10.08, Sexual Intimacies With Former Therapy Clients/Patients.)
Section 7 states:
7. Education and Training
7.04 Student Disclosure of Personal Information
Psychologists do not require students or supervisees to disclose personal information in course- or program-related activities, either orally or in writing, regarding sexual history, history of abuse and neglect, psychological treatment, and relationships with parents, peers, and spouses or significant others except if (1) the program or training facility has clearly identified this requirement in its admissions and program materials or (2) the information is necessary to evaluate or obtain assistance for students whose personal problems could reasonably be judged to be preventing them from performing their training- or professionally related activities in a competent manner or posing a threat to the students or others.
7.06 Assessing Student and Supervisee Performance
(a) In academic and supervisory relationships, psychologists establish a timely and specific process for providing feedback to students and supervisees. Information regarding the process is provided to the student at the beginning of supervision.
(b) Psychologists evaluate students and supervisees on the basis of their actual performance on relevant and established program requirements.
7.07 Sexual Relationships with Students and Supervisees
Psychologists do not engage in sexual relationships with students or supervisees who are in their department, agency, or training center or over whom psychologists have or are likely to have evaluative authority. (See also Standard 3.05, Multiple Relationships.)
Section 8 states:
8. Research and Publication
8.09 Humane Care and Use of Animals in Research
(c) Psychologists ensure that all individuals under their supervision who are using animals have received instruction in research methods and in the care, maintenance, and handling of the species being used, to the extent appropriate to their role. (See also Standard 2.05, Delegation of Work to Others.)
Section 9 states:
9.01 Bases for Assessments
(c) When psychologists conduct a record review or provide consultation or supervision and an individual examination is not warranted or necessary for the opinion, psychologists explain this and the sources of information on which they based their conclusions and recommendations.
Section 10 states:
10.01 Informed Consent to Therapy
(c) When the therapist is a trainee and the legal responsibility for the treatment provided resides with the supervisor, the client/patient, as part of the informed consent procedure, is informed that the therapist is in training and is being supervised and is given the name of the supervisor.
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7. Association of State And Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB) - (2005)
The Definitions section states:
Supervisee. "Supervisee" means any person who functions under the extended authority of the psychologist to provide, or while in training to provide, psychological services.
The Section on Multiple Relationships states:
Definition of multiple relationships. Psychologists recognize that multiple relationships may occur because of the psychologist's present or previous familial, social, emotional, financial, supervisory, political, administrative or legal relationship with the client or a relevant person associated with or related to the client. Psychologists take reasonable steps to ensure that if such a multiple relationship occurs, it is not exploitative of the client or a relevant person associated with or related to the client.
In the Rules of Conduct (Competence section) it states:
Providing supervision. The psychologist shall exercise appropriate supervision over supervisees, as set forth in the rules and regulations of the Boards.
In the section addressing the Welfare of Supervisees, Research Participants and Students it states:
Welfare of supervisees. The psychologist shall not engage in any verbal or physical behavior with supervisees which is seductive, demeaning or harassing or exploit a supervisee in any way -- sexually, financially or otherwise
2. Welfare of research participants. The psychologist shall respect the dignity and protect the welfare of his/her research participants, and shall comply with all relevant statutes and administrative rules concerning treatment of research participants.
3. Welfare of students. The psychologist shall not engage in any verbal or physical behavior with students which is seductive, demeaning or harassing or exploit a student in any way - sexually, financially or otherwise.
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8. California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) - (2011)
1.15 NON-THERAPIST ROLES:
When marriage and family therapists engage in professional roles other than treatment or supervision (including, but not limited to, managed care utilization review, consultation, coaching, adoption service, or behavior analysis), they act solely within that role and clarify, when necessary to avoid confusion with consumers and employers, how that role is distinguished from the practice of marriage and family therapy.
Marriage and family therapists take appropriate steps to ensure, insofar as possible, that the confidentiality of patients is maintained by their employees, supervisees, assistants, and volunteers.
3.5 STAYING CURRENT:
Marriage and family therapists remain abreast of developments in their field through educational activities or clinical experiences. Marriage and family therapists, when acting as teachers, supervisors, and researchers, stay abreast of changes in the field, maintain relevant standards of scholarship, and present accurate information.
3.8 HARASSMENT OR EXPLOITATION:
Marriage and family therapists do not engage in sexual or other harassment or exploitation of patients, students, supervisees, employees, or colleagues.
3.9 SCOPE OF COMPETENCE: Marriage and family therapists do not assess, test, diagnose, treat, or advise on problems beyond the level of their competence as determined by their education, training, and experience. While developing new areas of practice, marriage and family therapists take steps to ensure the competence of their work through education, training, consultation, and/or supervision.
4. RESPONSIBILITY TO STUDENTS AND SUPERVISEES
Marriage and family therapists do not exploit the trust and dependency of students and supervisees.
4.1 DUAL RELATIONSHIPS: Marriage and family therapists are aware of their influential position with respect to students and supervisees, and they avoid exploiting the trust and dependency of such persons. Marriage and family therapists therefore avoid dual relationships that are reasonably likely to impair professional judgment or lead to exploitation. Provision of therapy to students or supervisees is unethical. Provision of marriage and family therapy supervision to clients is unethical. Sexual intercourse, sexual contact or sexual intimacy and/or harassment of any kind with students or supervisees is unethical. Other acts which could result in unethical dual relationships include, but are not limited to, borrowing money from a supervisee, engaging in a business venture with a supervisee, or engaging in a close personal relationship with a supervisee. Such acts with a supervisee's spouse, partner or family member may also be considered unethical dual relationships.
4.2 COMPETENCE OF SUPERVISEES: Marriage and family therapists do not permit students, employees, or supervisees to perform or to hold themselves out as competent to perform professional services beyond their training, level of experience, competence, or unlicensed status.
4.3 MAINTAINING SKILLS OF SUPERVISORS: Marriage and family therapists who act as supervisors are responsible for maintaining the quality of their supervision skills and obtaining consultation or supervision for their work as supervisors whenever appropriate.
4.4 KNOWLEDGE OF SUPERVISORS: Supervisors and educators are knowledgeable about supervision, relevant laws and regulations, and the practice of marriage and family therapy. Supervisors and educators are knowledgeable about and abide by the laws and regulations governing the conduct of supervisors and supervisees.
4.5 CHANGES IN LAWS AND ETHICS: Supervisors and supervisees are aware of and stay abreast of changes in professional and ethical standards and legal requirements, and supervisors ensure that their supervisees are aware of professional and ethical standards and legal responsibilities.
4.6 CULTURAL DIVERSITY: Supervisors and educators are aware of and address the role that culture and diversity issues play in the supervisory relationship, including, but not limited to, evaluating, terminating, disciplining, or making decisions regarding supervisees or students.
4.7 POLICIES AND PROCEDURES: Supervisors and educators create policies and procedures that are clear and that are disclosed to supervisees and students at the commencement of supervision or education.
4.8 PERFORMANCE APPRAISALS: Supervisors and educators provide supervisees with periodic performance appraisals and evaluative feedback throughout the supervisory relationship and identify and address the limitations of supervisees and students that might impede their performance.
4.9 BUSINESS PRACTICES: Supervisors follow lawful business practices and employer policies when employing and/or supervising interns, trainees, applicants, and associates.
4.10 PERFORMANCE ASSISTANCE: Supervisors and educators guide supervisees and students in securing assistance when needed for the supervisee to maintain or improve performance, such as personal psychotherapy, additional education, training, or consultation.
4.11 DISMISSAL: Supervisors shall document their decisions to dismiss supervisees.
4.12 REVIEW OF TRAINEE AGREEMENTS: Supervisors are aware of and review any trainee agreements with qualified educational institutions.
4.13 PATIENTS ARE PATIENTS OF EMPLOYER: Supervisees understand that the patients seen by them are the patients of their employers.
4.14 KNOWLEDGE OF LAWS AND REGULATIONS: Supervisees have a responsibility to be knowledgeable about relevant laws and regulations pertaining to the license and practice of marriage and family therapy.
4.15 MAINTAIN REGISTRATIONS:Supervisees maintain registrations when required by law and/or regulation and function within this limited role as permitted by the licensing law and/or regulations.
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9. Canadian Counseling Association (CCA) - (2007)
Section D states:
Evaluation and Assessment
D4. Administrative and Supervisory Conditions
Counsellors ensure that evaluation and assessment instruments and procedures are administered and supervised under established conditions consistent with professional standards. They note any departures from standard conditions and any unusual behaviour or irregularities which may affect the interpretation of results.
Section F- Counsellor Education, Training and Supervision states:
F3. Ethical Orientation
Counsellors who are responsible for counsellor education, training and supervision have an obligation to make their students, trainees, and supervisees aware of the ethical responsibilities as expressed in the CCA Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice for Counsellors.
F4. Clarification of Roles and Responsibilities
Counsellors who engage in counselling supervision of students or trainees take responsibility for clarifying their respective roles and obligations.
F5. Welfare of Clients
Counsellors who engage in counselling supervision of students or trainees take steps to ensure the welfare of clients during the supervised practice period, and intervene, when necessary, to ensure that this obligation is met.
F6. Program Orientation
Counsellors responsible for counsellor education programs and training activities take responsibility to orient prospective Students and trainees to all core elements of such programs and activities, including to a clear policy with respect to all supervised practice components, both those simulated and real.
F7. Relational Boundaries
Counsellors who work as counsellor educators, trainers, and supervisors establish relationships with their students, trainees and supervisees such that appropriate relational boundaries are clarified and maintained, and dual relationships avoided.
F8. Obligation to Inform
Counsellors who work as counsellor educators, trainers, and supervisors take steps to inform students, trainees, and supervisees, at the beginning of activities associated with these roles, of all reasonably foreseeable circumstances under which confidentiality may be breached during such activities.
F9. Self-Development and Self-Awareness
Counsellors who work as counsellor educators, trainers and supervisors, encourage and facilitate the self-development and self-awareness of students, trainees and supervisees, so that they learn to integrate their professional practice and personal insight.
F10. Dealing with Personal Issues
Counsellors responsible for counsellor education, training, and supervision recognize when such activities evoke significant personal issues for students, trainees, and supervisees and refer to other sources when necessary to avoid counselling those for whom they hold administrative or evaluative responsibility.
F11. Self-Growth Activities
Counsellors who work as counsellor educators, trainers, and supervisors, ensure that any professional experiences which require self-disclosure and engagement in self-growth activities are managed in a manner consistent with the principles of informed consent, confidentiality, and safeguarding against any harmful effects.
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10. Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) - (2000)
Canadian Code of Ethics for Psychologists, Third Edition
The Preamble & Introduction state:
This Code articulates ethical principles, values, and standards to guide all members of the Canadian Psychological Association, whether scientists, practitioners, or scientist practitioners, or whether acting in a research, direct service, teaching, student, trainee, administrative, management, employer, employee, supervisory, consultative, peer review, editorial, expert witness, social policy, or any other role related to the discipline of psychology.
Definition of Terms
For the purposes of this Code:
d) "Others" means any persons with whom psychologists come in contact in the course of their work. This may include, but is not limited to: clients seeking help with individual, family, organizational, industrial, or community issues; research participants; employees; students; trainees; supervisees; colleagues; employers; third party payers; and, members of the general public.
i) The "discipline of psychology" refers to the scientific and applied methods and knowledge of psychology, and to the structures and procedures used by its members for conducting their work in relationship to society, to members of the public, to students or trainees, and to each other.
Principle I states:
Principle I: Respect for the Dignity of Persons
In the course of their work as scientists, practitioners, or scientist-practitioners, psychologists come into contact with many different individuals and groups, including: research participants; clients seeking help with individual, family, organizational, industrial, or community issues; students; trainees; supervisees; employees; business partners; business competitors; colleagues; employers; third party payers; and, the general public.
In these contacts, psychologists accept as fundamental the principle of respect for the dignity of persons; that is, the belief that each person should be treated primarily as a person or an end in him/herself, not as an object or a means to an end. In so doing, psychologists acknowledge that all persons have a right to have their innate worth as human beings appreciated and that this worth is not dependent upon their culture, nationality, ethnicity, colour, race, religion, sex, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, physical or mental abilities, age, socio-economic status, or any other preference or personal characteristic, condition, or status.
Although psychologists have a responsibility to respect the dignity of all persons with whom they come in contact in their role as psychologists, the nature of their contract with society demands that their greatest responsibility be to those persons in the most vulnerable position. Normally, persons directly receiving or involved in the psychologist's activities are in such a position (e.g., research participants, clients, students). This responsibility is almost always greater than their responsibility to those indirectly involved (e.g., employers, third party payers, the general public).
Adherence to the concept of moral rights is an essential component of respect for the dignity of persons. Rights to privacy, self-determination, personal liberty, and natural justice are of particular importance to psychologists, and they have a responsibility to protect and promote these rights in all of their activities. As such, psychologists have a responsibility to develop and follow procedures for informed consent, confidentiality, fair treatment, and due process that are consistent with those rights.
As individual rights exist within the context of the rights of others and of responsible caring (see Principle II), there might be circumstances in which the possibility of serious detrimental consequences to themselves or others, a diminished capacity to be autonomous, or a court order, would disallow some aspects of the rights to privacy, self-determination, and personal liberty. Indeed, such circumstances might be serious enough to create a duty to warn or protect others (see Standards I.45 and II.39).
However, psychologists still have a responsibility to respect the rights of the person(s) involved to the greatest extent possible under the circumstances, and to do what is necessary and reasonable to reduce the need for future disallowances.
Psychologists recognize that, although all persons possess moral rights, the manner in which such rights are promoted, protected, and exercised varies across communities and cultures. For instance, definitions of what is considered private vary, as does the role of families and other community members in personal decision making. In their work, psychologists acknowledge and respect such differences, while guarding against clear violations of moral rights.
In addition, psychologists recognize that as individual, family, group, or community vulnerabilities increase, or as the power of persons to control their environment or their lives decreases, psychologists have an increasing responsibility to seek ethical advice and to establish safeguards to protect the rights of the persons involved. For this reason, psychologists consider it their responsibility to increase safeguards to protect and promote the rights of persons involved in their activities proportionate to the degree of dependency and the lack of voluntary initiation. For example, this would mean that there would be more safeguards to protect and promote the rights of fully dependent persons than partially dependent persons, and more safeguards for partially dependent than independent persons.
Respect for the dignity of persons also includes the concept of distributive justice. With respect to psychologists, this concept implies that all persons are entitled to benefit equally from the contributions of psychology and to equal quality in the processes, procedures, and services being conducted by psychologists, regardless of the person's characteristics, condition, or status. Although individual psychologists might specialize and direct their activities to particular populations, or might decline to engage in activities based on the limits of their competence or acknowledgment of problems in some relationships, psychologists must not exclude persons on a capricious or unjustly discriminatory basis.
By virtue of the social contract that the discipline has with society, psychologists have a higher duty of care to members of society than the general duty of care all members of society have to each other.
However, psychologists are entitled to protect themselves from serious violations of their own moral rights (e.g., privacy, personal liberty) in carrying out their work as psychologists.
In adhering to the Principle of Respect for the Dignity of Persons, psychologists would:
I.8 Respect the right of research participants, clients, employees, supervisees, students, trainees, and others to safeguard their own dignity.
I.40 Respect the right of research participants, employees, supervisees, students, and trainees to reasonable personal privacy.
Confidentiality I.43 Be careful not to relay information about colleagues, colleagues' clients, research participants, employees, supervisees, students, trainees, and members of organizations, gained in the process of their activities as psychologists, that the psychologist has reason to believe is considered confidential by those persons, except as required or justified by law. (Also see Standards IV.17 and IV.18.)
I.47 Assume overall responsibility for the scientific and professional activities of their assistants, employees, students, supervisees, and trainees with regard to Respect for the Dignity of Persons, all of whom, however, incur similar obligations.
Principle II states:
Principle II: Responsible Caring Values Statement
A basic ethical expectation of any discipline is that its activities will benefit members of society or, at least, do no harm. Therefore, psychologists demonstrate an active concern for the welfare of any individual, family, group, or community with whom they relate in their role as psychologists. This concern includes both those directly involved and those indirectly involved in their activities. However, as with Principle I, psychologists' greatest responsibility is to protect the welfare of those in the most vulnerable position. Normally, persons directly involved in their activities (e.g., research participants, clients, students) are in such a position. Psychologists' responsibility to those indirectly involved (e.g., employers, third party payers, the general public) normally is secondary.
As persons usually consider their own welfare in their personal decision making, obtaining informed consent (see Principle I) is one of the best methods for ensuring that their welfare will be protected.
However, it is only when such consent is combined with the responsible caring of the psychologist that there is considerable ethical protection of the welfare of the person(s) involved.
Responsible caring leads psychologists to take care to discern the potential harm and benefits involved, to predict the likelihood of their occurrence, to proceed only if the potential benefits outweigh the potential harms, to develop and use methods that will minimize harms and maximize benefits, and to take responsibility for correcting clearly harmful effects that have occurred as a direct result of their research, teaching, practice, or business activities.
In order to carry out these steps, psychologists recognize the need for competence and self-knowledge. They consider incompetent action to be unethical per se, as it is unlikely to be of benefit and likely to be harmful. They engage only in those activities in which they have competence or for which they are receiving supervision, and they perform their activities as competently as possible. They acquire, contribute to, and use the existing knowledge most relevant to the best interests of those concerned.
In adhering to the Principle of Responsible Caring, psychologists would:
General caring II.1 Protect and promote the welfare of clients, research participants, employees, supervisees, students, trainees, colleagues, and others.
II.2 Avoid doing harm to clients, research participants, employees, supervisees, students, trainees, colleagues, and others.
Competence and selfknowledge II.6 Offer or carry out (without supervision) only those activities for which they have established their competence to carry them out to the benefit of others.
II.25 Facilitate the professional and scientific development of their employees, supervisees, students, and trainees by ensuring that these persons understand the values and ethical prescriptions of the discipline, and by providing or arranging for adequate working conditions, timely evaluations, and constructive consultation and experience opportunities.
II.28 Not encourage or engage in sexual intimacy with students or trainees with whom the psychologist has an evaluative or other relationship of direct authority. (Also see Standard III.31.)
II.41 Act also to stop or offset the consequences of harmful activities carried out by another psychologist or member of another discipline, when the harm is not serious or the activities appear to be primarily a lack of sensitivity, knowledge, or experience, and when the activities have come to their attention outside of a confidential client relationship between themselves and the psychologist or member of another discipline. This may include talking informally with the psychologist or member of the other discipline, obtaining objective information and, if possible and relevant, the assurance that the harm will discontinue and be corrected. If in a vulnerable position (e.g., employee, trainee) with respect to the other psychologist or member of the other discipline, it may include asking persons in less vulnerable positions to participate in the meeting(s).
II.50 Assume overall responsibility for the scientific and professional activities of their assistants, employees, supervisees, students, and trainees with regard to the Principle of Responsible Caring, all of whom, however, incur similar obligations.
In adhering to the Principle of Integrity in Relationships, psychologists would:
Accuracy/honesty III.22 Make no attempt to conceal the status of a trainee and, if a trainee
is providing direct client service, ensure that the client is informed of that fact.
III.31 Not exploit any relationship established as a psychologist to further personal, political, or business interests at the expense of the best interests of their clients, research participants, students, employers, or others. This includes, but is not limited to: soliciting clients of one's employing agency for private practice; taking advantage of trust or dependency to encourage or engage in sexual intimacies (e.g., with clients not included in Standard II.27, with clients' partners or relatives, with students or trainees not included in Standard II.28, or with research participants); taking advantage of trust or dependency to frighten clients into receiving services; misappropriating students' ideas, research or work; using the resources of one's employing institution for purposes not agreed to; giving or receiving kickbacks or bonuses for referrals; seeking or accepting loans or investments from clients; and, prejudicing others against a colleague for reasons of personal gain.
III.33 Avoid dual or multiple relationships (e.g.. with clients, research participants, employees, supervisees, students, or trainees) and other situations that might present a conflict of interest or that might reduce their ability to be objective and unbiased in their determinations of what might be in the best interests of others.
III.34 Manage dual or multiple relationships that are unavoidable due to cultural norms or other circumstances in such a manner that bias, lack of objectivity, and risk of exploitation are minimized. This might include obtaining ongoing supervision or consultation for the duration of the dual or multiple relationship, or involving a third
party in obtaining consent (e.g., approaching a client or employee about becoming a research participant).
III.40 Assume overall responsibility for the scientific and professional activities of their assistants, employees, supervisees, students, and trainees with regard to the Principle of Integrity in Relationships, all of whom, however, incur similar obligations.
Society is used here in the broad sense of a group of persons living as members of one or more human communities, rather than in the limited sense of state or government.
In adhering to the Principle of Responsibility to Society, psychologists would: Development of knowledge IV.31 Assume overall responsibility for the scientific and professional activities of their assistants, employees, supervisees, students, and trainees with regard to the Principle of Responsibility to Society, all of whom, however, incur similar obligations.
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11. Feminist Therapy Institute (FTI) - (1999)
[Authors' note: While the Code of Ethics for the Feminist Therapy Institute does not address issues specific to supervision and the interaction with trainees, the Code itself provides general guidelines for those who wish to best represent Feminist therapy. As such, the entire Code is presented below.]
Feminist therapy evolved from feminist philosophy, psychological theory and practice, and political theory. In particular feminists recognize the impact of society in creating and maintaining the problems and issues brought into therapy.
Briefly, feminists believe the personal is political. Basic tenets of feminism include a belief in the equal worth of all human beings, a recognition that each individual's personal experiences and situations are reflective of and an influence on society's institutionalized attitudes and values, and a commitment to political and social change that equalizes power among people. Feminists are committed to recognizing and reducing the pervasive influences and insidious effects of oppressive societal attitudes and society.
Thus, a feminist analysis addresses the understanding of power and its interconnections among gender, race, culture, class, physical ability, sexual orientation, age, and anti-Semitism as well as all forms of oppression based on religion, ethnicity, and heritage. Feminist therapists also live in and are subject to those same influences and effects and consistently monitor their beliefs and behaviors as a result of those influences.
Feminist therapists adhere to and integrate feminist analyses in all spheres of their work as therapists, educators, consultants, administrators, writers, editors, and/or researchers. Feminist therapists are accountable for the management of the power differential within these roles and accept responsibility for that power. Because of the limitations of a purely intrapsychic model of human functioning, feminist therapists facilitate the understanding of the interactive effects of the client's internal and external worlds. Feminist therapists possess knowledge about the psychology of women and girls and utilize feminist scholarship to revise theories and practices, incorporating new knowledge as it is generated.
Feminist therapists are trained in a variety of disciplines, theoretical orientations, and degrees of structure. They come from different cultural, economic, ethnic, and racial backgrounds. They work in many types of settings with a diversity of clients and practice different modalities of therapy, training, and research. Feminist therapy theory integrates feminist principles into other theories of human development and change.
The ethical guidelines that follow are additive to, rather than a replacement for, the ethical principles of the profession in which a feminist therapist practices. Amid this diversity, feminist therapists are joined together by their feminist analyses and perspectives. Additionally, they work toward incorporating feminist principles into existing professional standards when appropriate.
Feminist therapists live with and practice in competing forces and complex controlling interests. When mental health care involves third-party payers, it is feminist therapists' responsibility to advocate for the best possible therapeutic process for the client, including short or long term therapy. Care and compassion for clients include protection of confidentiality and awareness of the impacts of economic and political considerations, including the increasing disparity between the quality of therapeutic care available for those with or without third-party payers.
Feminist therapists assume a proactive stance toward the eradication of oppression in their lives and work toward empowering women and girls. They are respectful of individual differences, examining oppressive aspects of both their own and clients' value systems. Feminist therapists engage in social change activities, broadly defined, outside of and apart from their work in their professions. Such activities may vary in scope and content but are an essential aspect of a feminist perspective.
This code is a series of positive statements that provide guidelines for feminist therapy practice, training, and research. Feminist therapists who are members of other professional organizations adhere to the ethical codes of those organizations. Feminist therapists who are not members of such organizations are guided by the ethical standards of the organization closest to their mode of practice.
These statements provide more specific guidelines within the context of and as an extension of most ethical codes. When ethical guidelines are in conflict, the feminist therapist is accountable for how she prioritizes her choices.
These ethical guidelines, then, are focused on the issues feminist therapists, educators, and researchers have found especially important in their professional settings. As with any code of therapy ethics, the well being of clients is the guiding principle underlying this code. The feminist therapy issues that relate directly to the client's well being include cultural diversities and oppressions, power differentials, overlapping relationships, therapist accountability, and social change. Even though the principles are stated separately, each interfaces with the others to form an interdependent whole. In addition, the code is a living document and thus is continually in the process of change.
The Feminist Therapy Institute's Code of Ethics is shaped by economic and cultural forces in North America and by the experiences of its members. Members encourage an ongoing international dialogue about feminist and ethical issues. It recognizes that ethical codes are aspirational and ethical behaviors are on a continuum rather than reflecting dichotomies. Additionally, ethical guidelines and legal requirements may differ. The Feminist Therapy Institute provides educational interventions for its members rather than disciplinary activity.
Ethical Guidelines for Feminist Therapists
I. Cultural Diversities and Oppressions
A. A feminist therapist increases her accessibility to and for a wide range of clients from her own and other identified groups through flexible delivery of services. When appropriate, the feminist therapist assists clients in accessing other services and intervenes when a client's rights are violated.
B. A feminist therapist is aware of the meaning and impact of her own ethnic and cultural background, gender, class, age, and sexual orientation, and actively attempts to become knowledgeable about alternatives from sources other than her clients. She is actively engaged in broadening her knowledge of ethnic and cultural experiences, non-dominant and dominant.
C. Recognizing that the dominant culture determines the norm, the therapist's goal is to uncover and respect cultural and experiential differences, including those based on long term or recent immigration and/or refugee status.
D. A feminist therapist evaluates her ongoing interactions with her clientele for any evidence of her biases or discriminatory attitudes and practices. She also monitors her other interactions, including service delivery, teaching, writing, and all professional activities. The feminist therapist accepts responsibility for taking action to confront and change any interfering, oppressing, or devaluing biases she has.
II. Power Differentials
A. A feminist therapist acknowledges the inherent power differentials between client and therapist and models effective use of personal, structural, or institutional power. In using the power differential to the benefit of the client, she does not take control or power which rightfully belongs to her client.
B. A feminist therapist discloses information to the client which facilitates the therapeutic process, including information communicated to others. The therapist is responsible for using self-disclosure only with purpose and discretion and in the interest of the client.
C. A feminist therapist negotiates and renegotiates formal and/or informal contacts with clients in an ongoing mutual process. As part of the decision-making process, she makes explicit the therapeutic issues involved.
D. A feminist therapist educates her clients regarding power relationships. She informs clients of their rights as consumers of therapy, including procedures for resolving differences and filing grievances. She clarifies power in its various forms as it exists within other areas of her life, including professional roles, social/governmental structures, and interpersonal relationships. She assists her clients in finding ways to protect themselves and, if requested, to seek redress.
III. Overlapping Relationships
A. A feminist therapist recognizes the complexity and conflicting priorities inherent in multiple or overlapping relationships. The therapist accepts responsibility for monitoring such relationships to prevent potential abuse of or harm to the client.
B. A feminist therapist is actively involved in her community. As a result, she is aware of the need for confidentiality in all settings. Recognizing that her client's concerns and general well-being are primary, she self-monitors both public and private statements and comments. Situations may develop through community involvement where power dynamics shift, including a client having equal or more authority than the therapist. In all such situations a feminist therapist maintains accountability.
C. When accepting third party payments, a feminist therapist is especially cognizant of and clearly communicates to her client the multiple obligations, roles, and responsibilities of the therapist. When working in institutional settings, she clarifies to all involved parties where her allegiances lie. She also monitors multiple and conflicting expectations between clients and caregivers, especially when working with children and elders.
D. A feminist therapist does not engage in sexual intimacies nor any overtly or covertly sexualized behaviors with a client or former client.
IV. Therapist Accountability
A. A feminist therapist is accountable to herself, to colleagues, and especially to her clients.
B. A feminist therapist will contract to work with clients and issues within the realm of her competencies. If problems beyond her competencies surface, the feminist therapist utilizes consultation and available resources. She respects the integrity of the relationship by stating the limits of her training and providing the client with the possibilities of continuing with her or changing therapists.
C. A feminist therapist recognizes her personal and professional needs and utilizes ongoing self-evaluation, peer support, consultation, supervision, continuing education, and/or personal therapy. She evaluates, maintains, and seeks to improve her competencies, as well as her emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual well being. When the feminist therapist has experienced a simila r stressful or damaging event as her client, she seeks consultation.
D. A feminist therapist continually re-evaluates her training, theoretical background, and research to include developments in feminist knowledge. She integrates feminism into psychological theory, receives ongoing therapy training, and acknowledges the limits of her competencies.
E. A feminist therapist engages in self-care activities in an ongoing manner outside the work setting. She recognizes her own needs and vulnerabilities a s well as the unique stresses inherent in this work. She demonstrates an ability to establish boundaries with the client that are healthy for both of them. She also is willing to self-nurture in appropriate and self-empowering ways.
V. Social Change
A. A feminist therapist seeks multiple avenues for impacting change, including public education and advocacy within professional organizations, lobbying for legislative actions, and other appropriate activities.
B. A feminist therapist actively questions practices in her community that appear harmful to clients or therapists. She assists clients in intervening on their own behalf. As appropriate, the feminist therapist herself intervenes, especially when other practitioners appear to be engaging in harmful, unethical, or illegal behaviors.
C. When appropriate, a feminist therapist encourages a client's recognition of criminal behaviors and also facilitates the client's navigation of the criminal justice system.
D. A feminist therapist, teacher, or researcher is alert to the control of information dissemination and questions pressures to conform to and use dominant mainstream standards. As technological methods of communication change and increase, the feminist therapist recognizes the socioeconomic aspects of these developments and communicates according to clients' access to technology.
E. A feminist therapist, teacher, or researcher recognizes the political is personal in a in a world where social change is a constant.
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12. National Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) - (2004)
[Authors' note: The Code of Ethics of NAADAC is composed of a set of personal statements to which each counselor must subscribe. While the Code does not specifically address issues pertaining to supervision and the training of counselors, it does provide general guidelines and rules for conduct. As such, the entire code is presented below]
NAADAC Code of Ethics
Principle 1: Non-Discrimination
I shall affirm diversity among colleagues or clients regardless of age gender, sexual orientation, ethnic/racial background, religious/spiritual beliefs, marital status, political beliefs, or mental/physical disability.
- I shall strive to treat all individuals with impartiality and objectivity relating to all based solely on their personal merits and mindful of the dignity of all human persons. As such, I shall not impose my personal values on my clients.
- I shall avoid bringing personal or professional issues into the counseling relationship. Through an awareness of the impact of stereotyping and discrimination, I shall guard the individual rights and personal dignity of my clients.
- I shall relate to all clients with empathy and understanding no matter what their diagnosis or personal history.
Principle 2: Client Welfare
I understand that the ability to do good is based on an underlying concern for the well being of others. I shall act for the good of others and exercise respect, sensitivity, and insight. I understand that my primary professional responsibility and loyalty is to the welfare of my clients, and I shall work for the client irrespective of who actually pays his/her fees.
- I shall do everything possible to safeguard the privacy and confidentiality of client information except where the client has given specific, written, informed, and limited consent or when the client poses a risk to himself or others.
- I shall provide the client his/her rights regarding confidentiality, in writing, as part of informing the client of any areas likely to affect the client's confidentiality.
- I understand and support all that will assist clients to a better quality of life, greater freedom, and true independence.
- I shall not do for others what they can readily do for themselves but rather, facilitate and support the doing. Likewise, I shall not insist on doing what I perceive as good without reference to what the client perceives as good and necessary.
- I understand that suffering is unique to a specific individual and not of some generalized or abstract suffering, such as might be found in the understanding of the disorder. I also understand that the action taken to relieve suffering must be uniquely suited to the suffering individual and not simply some universal prescription.
- I shall provide services without regard to the compensation provided by the client or by a third party and shall render equally appropriate services to individuals whether they are paying a reduced fee or a full fee.
Principle 3: Client Relationship
I understand and respect the fundamental human right of all individuals to self-determination and to make decisions that they consider in their own best interest. I shall be open and clear about the nature, extent, probable effectiveness, and cost of those services to allow each individual to make an informed decision of their care.
- I shall provide the client and/or guardian with accurate and complete information regarding the extent of the potential professional relationship, such as the Code of Ethics and professional loyalties and responsibilities.
- I shall inform the client and obtain the client's participation including the recording of the interview, the use of interview material for training purposes, and/or observation of an interview by another person.
Principle 4: Trustworthiness
I understand that effectiveness in my profession is largely based on the ability to be worthy of trust, and I shall work to the best of my ability to act consistently within the bounds of a known moral universe, to faithfully fulfill the terms of both personal and professional commitments, to safeguard fiduciary relationships consistently, and to speak the truth as it is known to me.
- I shall never misrepresent my credentials or experience.
- I shall make no unsubstantiated claims for the efficacy of the services I provide and make no statements about the nature and course of addictive disorders that have not been verified by scientific inquiry.
- I shall constantly strive for a better understanding of addictive disorders and refuse to accept supposition and prejudice as if it were the truth.
- I understand that ignorance in those matters that should be known does not excuse me from the ethical fault of misinforming others.
- I understand the effect of impairment on professional performance and shall be willing to seek appropriate treatment for myself or for a colleague. I shall support peer assistance programs in this respect.
- I understand that most property in the healing professions is intellectual property and shall not present the ideas or formulations of others as if they were my own. Rather, I shall give appropriate credit to their originators both in written and spoken communication.
- I regard the use of any copyrighted material without permission or the payment of royalty to be theft.
Principle 5: Compliance with Law
I understand that laws and regulations exist for the good ordering of society and for the restraint of harm and evil, and I am aware of those laws and regulations that are relevant both personally and professionally and follow them, while reserving the right to commit civil disobedience.
- I understand that the determination that a law or regulation is unjust is not a matter of preference or opinion but a matter of rational investigation, deliberation, and dispute.
- I willingly accept that there may be a penalty for justified civil disobedience, and I must weigh the personal harm of that penalty against the good done by civil protest.
Principle 6: Rights and Duties
I understand that personal and professional commitments and relationships create a network of rights and corresponding duties. I shall work to the best of my ability to safeguard the natural and consensual rights of each individual and fulfill those duties required of me.
- I understand that justice extends beyond individual relationships to the community and society; therefore, I shall participate in activities that promote the health of my community and profession.
- I shall, to the best of my ability, actively engage in the legislative processes, educational institutions, and the general public to change public policy and legislation to make possible opportunities and choice of service for all human beings of any ethnic or social background whose lives are impaired by alcoholism and drug abuse.
- I understand that the right of confidentiality cannot always be maintained if it serves to protect abuse, neglect, or exploitation of any person or leaves another at risk of bodily harm.
Principle 7: Dual Relationships
I understand that I must seek to nurture and support the development of a relationship of equals rather than to take unfair advantage of individuals who are vulnerable and exploitable.
- I shall not engage in professional relationships or commitments that conflict with family members, friends, close associates, or others whose welfare might be jeopardized by such a dual relationship.
- Because a relationship begins with a power differential, I shall not exploit relationships with current or former clients for personal gain, including social or business relationships.
- I shall not under any circumstances engage in sexual behavior with current or former clients.
- I shall not accept substantial gifts from clients, other treatment organizations, or the providers of materials or services used in my practice.
Principle 8: Preventing Harm
I understand that every decision and action has ethical implication leading either to benefit or harm, and I shall carefully consider whether any of my decisions or actions has the potential to produce harm of a physical, psychological, financial, legal, or spiritual nature before implementing them.
- I shall refrain from using any methods that could be considered coercive such as threats, negative labeling, and attempts to provoke shame or humiliation.
- I shall make no requests of clients that are not necessary as part of the agreed treatment plan.
- I shall terminate a counseling or consulting relationship when it is reasonably clear that the client is not benefiting from the relationship.
- I understand an obligation to protect individuals, institutions, and the profession from harm that might be done by others. Consequently, I am aware that the conduct of another individual is an actual or likely source of harm to clients, colleagues, institutions, or the profession, and that I have an ethical obligation to report such conduct to competent authorities.
Principle 9: Duty of Care
I shall operate under the principle of Duty of Care and shall maintain a working/therapeutic environment in which clients, colleagues, and employees can be safe from the threat of physical, emotional or intellectual harm.
- I respect the right of others to hold opinions, beliefs, and values different from my own.
- I shall strive for understanding and the establishment of common ground rather than for the ascendancy of one opinion over another.
- I shall maintain competence in the area of my practice through continuing education, constantly improving my knowledge and skills in those approaches most effective with my specific clients.
- I shall scrupulously avoid practicing in any area outside of my competence.
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13. National Association of Social Workers (NASW) - (2008)
3. SOCIAL WORKERS' ETHICAL RESPONSIBILITIES IN PRACTICE SETTINGS
3.01 Supervision and Consultation
(a) Social workers who provide supervision or consultation should have the necessary knowledge and skill to supervise or consult appropriately and should do so only within their areas of knowledge and competence.
(b) Social workers who provide supervision or consultation are responsible for setting clear, appropriate, and culturally sensitive boundaries.
(c) Social workers should not engage in any dual or multiple relationships with supervisees in which there is a risk of exploitation of or potential harm to the supervisee.
(d) Social workers who provide supervision should evaluate supervisees' performance in a manner that is fair and respectful.
3.02 Education and Training
(a) Social workers who function as educators, field instructors for students, or trainers should provide instruction only within their areas of knowledge and competence and should provide instruction based on the most current information and knowledge available in the profession.>
(b) Social workers who function as educators or field instructors for students should evaluate students' performance in a manner that is fair and respectful.
(c) Social workers who function as educators or field instructors for students should take reasonable steps to ensure that clients are routinely informed when services are being provided by students.
(d) Social workers who function as educators or field instructors for students should not engage in any dual or multiple relationships with students in which there is a risk of exploitation or potential harm to the student. Social work educators and field instructors are responsible for setting clear, appropriate, and culturally sensitive boundaries.
3.03 Performance Evaluation
Social workers who have responsibility for evaluating the performance of others should fulfill such responsibility in a fair and considerate manner and on the basis of clearly stated criteria.
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14. National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) - (2013)
11. NCCs who act as counselor educators, field placement or clinical supervisors shall not engage in sexual or romantic intimacy with current students or supervisees. They shall not engage in any form of sexual or romantic intimacy with former students or supervisees for two years from the date of last supervision contact.
12. NCCs who provide clinical supervision services shall keep accurate records of supervision goals and progress and consider all information gained in supervision as confidential except to prevent clear, imminent danger to the client or others or when legally required to do so by a court or government agency order. In cases in which the supervisor receives a court or governmental agency order requiring the production of supervision records, the NCC shall make reasonable attempts to promptly notify the supervisee. In cases in which the supervisee is a student of a counselor education program, the supervisor shall release supervision records consistent with the terms of the arrangement with the counselor education program.
13. NCCs who provide clinical supervision services shall intervene in situations where supervisees are impaired or incompetent and thus place client(s) at risk.
14. NCCs who provide clinical supervision services shall not have multiple relationships with supervisees that may interfere with supervisors’ professional judgment or exploit supervisees. Supervisors shall not supervise relatives.
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15. Northamerican Association of Masters in Psychology (NAMP) - (2000)
Section 3 states:
3.3 DUAL RELATIONSHIPS
Master's Psychologists shall exercise all possible precautions regarding "dual-relations" of any kind, and should avoid social contact with individuals such as clients, students, and supervisees in order to avoid actual or apparent exploitation. When, due to unanticipated circumstances, the provider discovers that a dual-relationship[s] exist, the provider exercises all possible care within the guidelines set forth in these ethical principles.
Master's Psychologists should also abstain from entering into dual-relationships within business or research relationships, which might violate these ethical principles or establish an unethical atmosphere.
Section 5 states:
5.2 REFERRALS and CONSULTATIONS
Master's Psychologists shall, when appropriate, refer clients to applicable supplementary specialists or other medical, legal, social, educational, etc. providers of requisite assessment and/or treatment techniques and services. When required, the Master's Psychologists shall consult and collaborate with professionals from various fields, or use supervisory support from appropriate professional[s], in planning the best program of services to furnish clients with the best alternative[s] of qualified treatment.
PRINCIPLE 10: SUPERVISION
The Master's Psychologists shall maintain proper supervision of their employees, subordinates, supervisees, and research assistants in the delegation of duties and shall make every ethically appropriate effort to ensure that only those individuals competent to perform such services do so.
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16. United States Association for Body Psychotherapy (USABP) - (2007)
In the Introduction, it states:
The United States Association for Body Psychotherapy (USABP) is an association of body-oriented psychotherapists, allied somatic practitioners, and interns trained in related modalities. The purpose of the USABP is to support the practice and further evolution of the field of body psychotherapy.
Body psychotherapists recognize the intrinsic unity of the human being in our somatic nature. Body psychotherapists, therefore, work in ways that foster the integration of bodily sensation, thought, affect, and movement to promote more integral human functioning and the resolution of psychotherapeutic concerns. Body psychotherapeutic methods, including language, gesture and touch, when used in responsible, ethical and competent ways, make an essential contribution to the psychotherapeutic process by including the missing and often alienated aspects of our being which are rooted in our bodily nature and experience.
These ethical guidelines set forth the principles and standards which guide the practice of this profession. These principles and standards represent a cumulative lived wisdom in the field of body psychotherapy. They are not meant to be all-inclusive. The principles in this code are intended to be aspirational, while the standards are directive. Members of the USABP seek consultation with health care and other professionals, and consider cultural and contextual factors, other certification and licensure regulations for their professions, state and federal laws, and the dictates of their own consciences when determining ethical conduct.
Body psychotherapists recognize their ethical responsibility to maintain the standards of conduct and care, and of personal and professional development. Thus, body psychotherapists commit themselves to the continual examination of their actions, motives and attitudes in their professional relationships to support the safety and welfare of their clients and to nurture the effective practice of their profession. Body psychotherapists likewise expect, encourage and support ethical behavior and self-examination from their students, supervisees, employees, and colleagues.
Principle E states:
Principle E: Concern for Others' Welfare
Body psychotherapists seek to contribute to the welfare of those with whom they interact professionally. In their professional actions, they weigh the welfare and rights of their patients or clients, students, supervisees, human research participants, and other affected persons and the welfare of animal subjects of research. Body psychotherapists are sensitive to real and ascribed differences in power between others and themselves and they strive not to exploit or mislead people before, during or after professional relationships.
The ETHICAL STANDARDS (COMPETENCE) section states:
5. As teachers/supervisors/researchers dedicated to high standards of scholarship and the presentation of accurate information, body psychotherapists make every effort to present accurate and cogent information to students, supervisees, colleagues, and the public and to prevent the distortion or misuse of their clinical and research findings. They rely on scientifically and professionally derived knowledge in their teaching practice. They present themselves and the field accurately and professionally to the public.
The Ethical Standards (Multiple Relationships) section states:
2. Body Psychotherapists are aware of the differences in power that may exist in their relationships with clients, students and supervisees. Body Psychotherapists will be sensitive to the real and ascribed differences in power, be responsible for bringing potential issues into the awareness of those involved, and be available for reasonable processing with those involved.
6. As teachers, Body Psychotherapists acknowledge that their relationships with students and/or supervises include factors which often make avoiding multiple relationships difficult. They monitor their teaching and supervision relationships to ensure that they do not become exploitive and/or damaging. Body Psychotherapists do not have sexual relations with students or supervisees and do not subject them to sexual harassment.
Section VII states:
VII. PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIALITY
11. Body psychotherapists take appropriate steps to ensure, as far as possible, that employees, supervisees, assistants, and volunteers maintain the confidentiality of clients. They take appropriate steps to protect the client's identity or to obtain prior, written authorization for the use of any identifying clinical materials in teaching, writing and public presentations.
Section IX states:
IX. EDUCATION AND TRAINING
Body psychotherapists who are responsible for education and training programs seek to ensure that the
programs are competently designed and provide appropriate experiences and training to fulfill the stated objectives. They recognize the power they hold over students and supervisees and therefore make reasonable efforts to engage in conduct that is personally affirming and respectful toward students and supervisees.
1. Body psychotherapists attempt to ensure that any education and training programs for which they are responsible have accurate descriptions of the program content, training goals, objectives, and requirements that must be met for satisfactory admission to and completion of the program. This information is made readily available to all interested parties.
2. When engaged in teaching or training, educators present pertinent information accurately and objectively with respectful critiques when appropriate. The educational content in their programs is based on information that has some form of valid, publicly available evidence and/or investigation behind it. Educational programs provide exposure to varied theoretical positions as well as scientifically and professionally derived knowledge.
3. Body psychotherapists establish appropriate processes for providing feedback to students and supervisees. They evaluate students and supervisees on the basis of their actual performance on relevant and established program requirements. Additionally, they seek, encourage and utilize feedback from students and supervisees. This feedback may be written, verbal, formal, or informal.
4. When performing the role of teacher or trainer, body psychotherapists maintain a level of confidentiality appropriate for the teaching environment. Teachers and trainers discuss trainees and supervisees only in accord with publicly stated policy or mutual agreement and for the purpose of enriching the educational opportunities of the individual.
5. Body psychotherapists inform trainees and supervisees of the legal/ethical prohibition against representing themselves as competent to perform professional services beyond their level of training, experience or competence.
6. Educators must be able to present adequate credentials that demonstrate that their teaching is within their scope of learning and expertise.
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17. A Note on Supervision and Dual Relationships
A dual relationship between a supervisor and supervisee exists when the supervisor has an additional role/s or relationship/s with the supervisee. Examples are when the supervisor is also a teacher, therapist or fellow congregational member of the supervisee. While sexual dual relationships are always unethical, non-sexual dual relationships are not always unethical. Some dual relationships, such as in rural, military or small communities, are unavoidable. Due to the fact that all forms of boundary crossing, including non-sexual touch, have often been mistakenly associated with dual relationships, following is a detailed description of the sections of professional organizations' codes of ethics on dual relationships.
Supervision as a mandatory dual relationships: Supervision relationships present a more complex situation when it comes to the analysis of the ethics, as related to dual relationships. The supervisor-supervisee relationship, like the duty to warn or child reporting law, presents an inherent duality. These situations introduce legally mandated duality. The dual relationship occurs, in such cases, when the therapist has a therapeutic relationship with their patient and, at the same time, has a legal and ethical responsibility to other people who are not patients. In the cases of Psychological Assistants and MFT or LCSW interns, the law mandates a complex dual relationship where the therapist has a supervisory obligation to the supervisee or intern and has a clinical, ethical and legal responsibility to the clients seen by the psychological assistant, MFT intern or LCSW intern. Even though the clients are being seen by the supervisees, from a legal point of view they are the supervisors clients. The California Business and Professional Codes 2910/11/13 and 1387, for example, cover the regulations for psychological assistants and 4980 discusses the intern status of MFTs. The codes clearly mandate the supervisor's responsibility for the welfare of the supervisee's clients, thus creating inevitable dual relationships, as described above.
For a further analysis of this issue, please go to Law Imposed Dual Relationships.
For details of the professional organizations' codes of ethics on dual relationships, click here.
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