Monday, November 28, 2011

Human Service Ethics: Critical Evaluation Of The NOHSE Guidelines

Desdery J. Masao


Part one, confidentiality:

I believe that NOHSE statement 3 that “Human Service professionals protect the clients’ right to privacy and confidentiality expect when such confidentiality would cause harm to the client or others, when agency guidelines state otherwise, or under other stated conditions. Professional are to inform clients of the limits of confidentiality prior to the onset of the helping relationship”, as per Kenyon, page 63, is ambiguous and problematic. This statement can serve the very best purpose of clients and Human Service organization, at the same time can infringe the very rights of clients and cause case worker to be considered not following state, federal, local and or organization policies.

My fellow student Antoniette Polito said that “There are various state and federal laws that do recognize the confidential relationships between client and worker, but at the same time these laws require the workers to report abuse of children, senior citizens or people with disabilities. However, it is true that some states laws don’t carry out client’s privacy as others. However, the human service value is still to do the best interest of the clients, and some ethical dilemmas can occur. It is our duty to do what is best for the clients. According to Reamer, page 44, we social workers have to sacrifice something either way. Our choices sometimes can either to follow the law and endanger the clients or to break the law and save clients. In case of ethical dilemmas we are trusted to reduce what Popper 1966called “minimization of suffering”.

Part two, culture, values and spiritual beliefs:

Statement 19 as per NOHSE, Kenyon Page 67, state that HS “professionals are aware of their own cultural backgrounds, beliefs and values, recognizing the potential for impact on their relationships with others.” For the social worker to be aware of their own cultural backgrounds, beliefs and values, it does not necessarily provide them with potential for impact on their relationships with others, unless they are also aware of others’ cultures, values and spiritual beliefs. Hence, they need to apply HS values and ethics.

Social workers empower members of society to understand diversification and globalization and they are function for the better socioeconomic endeavors of their clients. For example, Reamer 2006, page 13, says that “Social work is not mere technology; rather, it is value-base and value-inspired effort designed to help vulnerable people through the use of sophisticated methods of intervention. By Timms 1983.”

Part three, adherence to employer:

Kenyon, page 73, statement 32, state that human service professionals adhere to commitments made to their employers. Employers and NASW values and ethics, obviously want social workers to respect clients’ rights to confidentiality and security; however, in some situations doing both simultaneously can be difficult. Some social workers chose actual duty from among conflicting prima face duties; explained by Ross 1930. Either way social workers in this case are to sacrifice something, either not adhere commitment to employers and serve best interest of clients or vis-à-vis. Hence they have to reduce what Popper 1966 called to minimize suffering.

Case workers have personal values and the way we believe them must be unique because we are all unique from one another. I believe that the way our values apply to our clients is unique as well. Therefore, there is no universal principle that can be applied exactly from clients to clients and develop the same kind of relationships to all clients. For example, statement 22, Kenyon, Page 69, state that, “Human service professionals avoid duplicating another professional’s helping relation with a client. “

For example social worker can decide not to adhere employer’s commitment by statement 22, Kenyon, Page 69. It state that, “Human service professionals avoid duplicating another professional’s helping relation with a client. “ Also Kenyon page 4 tells us that “it is acceptable for a social worker knowingly and willingly to violet a law,” so long that they are serving the best interest of the client and it was ethical dilemma and decision for a professional to make.


2.                                                      Kenyon, P. (1999). What would you do? : an ethical case workbook for human service professionals. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Pub.

3.                                                      Reamer, F. G. (2006). Social work values and ethics. New York: Columbia University Press

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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about unexpected emotions.