E9 professional and ethical practice boundaries
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E9 professional and ethical practice boundaries E9 professional and ethical practice boundaries Document Transcript

  • 2012 OCASIProfessional Development ConferenceProfessional and Ethical Practice:BoundariesJUNE 15, 2012(E9)FACILITATED BY:DEBORAH G. HEADLEY Email: nta@ca.inter.net Telephone: 416-691-1411 Shoppers World Postal Outlet 3003 Danforth Ave. Box 93590 Toronto, Ontario M4C 5R4 Copyright © 2012 Deborah G. Headley, Network for Therapeutic Alliances. All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced, used in any form, or distributed by any means without the written permission of Network for Therapeutic Alliances.
  • Professional and Ethical Practice: BoundariesGoalsDefine boundaries as part of ethical practice and professional responsibilityDistinguish between boundary blurring, crossings and violationsDescribe various types of boundaries and boundary breachesIdentify strategies for establishing and maintaining appropriate boundariesGuidelinesConfidentialityRespect & SensitivitySaying No/ParticipationMaking Mistakes/CompassionHaving FunAgendaWelcome and OverviewGoals/Guidelines/AgendaProfessional and Ethical PracticeBlurring, Crossings and ViolationsAddressing and preventing boundary breachesClosing and Evaluation 2
  • Professional and Ethical Practice: BoundariesOverviewProfessional boundaries are the lines of separation that distinguish clients fromcounsellors in the helping relationship. They include the concrete contractual aspects ofthe working relationship. They define the nature of the relationship between counselorand client. They address those areas of judgment that have the potential to do harm.RationaleProfessional boundaries are essential in the workplace, because they are meant toprevent problems such as unfair treatment, law suits, exploitation, etc, within thecompany and with business.Each counsellor at various points in her/his profession will be faced with defining andmaintaining appropriate boundaries with clients.Boundaries exist as part of the helping relationship. They provide for a safe therapeuticconnection and therefore should not left to chance.TypesA boundary is a dynamic line which, if crossed, may constitute unprofessional behaviourand misuse of power.There are three types of breaches: blurring, crossing and violation. 3
  • Professional and Ethical Practice: BoundariesBoundary BreachesBlurringThere are grey areas around professional boundaries that require the use of goodjudgment and careful consideration of the context (e.g. the appropriateness of hugginga client, attending a client function, giving a client a lift, giving a colleague advice abouttheir family member, etc.).While each situation may appear harmless, when put together they may form a patternindicating that a boundary has been crossed or is likely to be crossed in the future.CrossingBehaviours that raise the need to be cautious are considered crossings, because theymay distort the professional boundaries that are in place to protect the client.However, while lack of clarity may occur, these types of breaches may also be used in atherapeutic manner. Therapeutic use can only happen if the counsellor is conscientiousabout potential for harm and has the client’s best interest in mind. Some of thesebehaviours include: Gift giving Dual/multiple relationships Bartering/use of personal money Social contact/out of office contact Non-sexual touch/attractions Workplace friendships Excess counselling time Personal disclosureViolationBoundary violation is a deliberate behaviour by a counsellor or helping professional thatis recognizably inappropriate and in violation of the nature of therapeutic relationships,ethics and/or legal statutes. These types of breaches are those that lead to abuse,sexual relations or romantic encounters, inappropriate contact or relationship and abuseof power. They are never appropriate and are prohibited. They cross the line of decencyand violate or exploit clients. 4
  • Professional and Ethical Practice: BoundariesPreventionCodes of ethics on their own cannot prevent counselors from acting in unethical ways.Good judgment is nurtured and borne out of a willingness to be conscious of and reflectupon one’s competences, to critically analyze, to challenge personal motivations and toheed the warning signs that may lead from a boundary crossing to a violation.PrinciplesBoundaries are guidelines that are based on the basic principles ofcounsellor/practitioner codes of ethics and standards of practice. Corey (1996) brieflyoutlines five principles in which therapeutic boundaries are based upon:• Beneficence: a counsellor must accept responsibility for promoting what is good for the client with the expectation that the client will benefit from the counselling sessions.• Nonmaleficence: “doing no harm”. The counsellor must avoid at all times, (even inadvertently) any activities or situations with the client that could cause a conflict of interest.• Autonomy: the counsellor’s ethical responsibility to encourage client independent thinking and decision-making, and to deter all forms of client dependency.• Justice: the counsellor’s commitment to provide an equal and fair service to all clients regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, culture, disability and socio- economic status.• Fidelity: being honest with clients and faithfully honouring the counsellor’s commitment to the client’s progress. 5
  • Professional and Ethical Practice: BoundariesStrategiesEffective and diligent counsellors recognize that the intense feelings can arise in thecounselling relationship and how these can challenge personal and professionalboundaries.Understanding the serious effects of one’s own power and how the relationship can bemisinterpreted by the client is a necessary caution that comes with understanding theneed to continually establish and maintain safe and respectful relationships with clients.Steps:1. Set the stage with appropriate boundaries from the initial contact.2. Use judgment that puts the client’s well being and safety first.3. Interrupt or address these breaches immediately, seemingly harmless comments that can evolve into the uncomfortable territory of boundary crossings.4. Report and/or seek help for questions or lack of clarity about a potential boundary breach.5. It is the counsellor’s responsibility to re-establish the professional boundaries, regardless of who crossed the line.6. Document inappropriate behaviour as well as the measures taken to re-establish the professional boundaries.Action PlanWhat is a next step I will take as a result of this workshop?What are the resources I can access to achieve my next step? 6
  • References & ResourcesBooksLinzer, N. (1999). Resolving ethical dilemmas in social work practice. Toronto: Allynand Bacon.Murphy B.C. & Dillon, C. (2011) Interviewing In Action In A Multicultural World. 5thed. California: Brooks/Cole Cenage Learning.Schneider-Corey, M. (2007) Becoming a Helper. 5th ed. California: ThomsonBrooks/Cole.WebsitesPope, K. S. & Keith-Spiegel P. (2008). A practical approach to boundaries inpsychotherapy: making decisions, bypassing blunders, and mending fences. JournalOf Clinical Psychology, 64, 638-652. Retrieved from:http://kspope.com/ethics/boundary.php.Pope, K. S. & Vasquez, M. (2011). Steps in ethical decision-making in Ethics inpsychotherapy and counseling: a practical guide. 4th ed. Toronto: John Wiley.Retrieved from: http://kspope.com/memory/ethics/boundary.php.Zur, O. (2011). Dual Relationships, Multiple Relationships & Boundaries InPsychotherapy, Counseling & Mental Health. Retrieved fromhttp://www.zurinstitute.com/dualrelationships.html.ResourcesOntario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (2008) Code of Ethics& Standards of Practice. http://www.ocswssw.org/en/code_of_ethics.htm.Pope, K. S. Dual relationships, multiple relationships, & boundary decisions.Resources http://kspope.com/dual/index.php.Zur Institute. Ethics Codes of the Major Psychotherapy Professional AssociationsRetrieved from http://www.zurinstitute.com/codesofethics.html. 7
  • TRAINING & EDUCATIONNetwork for Therapeutic Alliances: For more information, call 416-691-1411 or emailnta@ca.inter.net Courses: Clinical Workshops: Clinical Cross Cultural Counselling for Understanding violence Against Women by Counsellors: Introduction; Intimate Partners Individuals & Family; Groups; Working with Abused Women: Overview Communities; Documentation; Working with Children Exposed to Violence Supervision The Impact of Violence on Child Development Feminist Group Development and Group Counselling Skills: Interviewing; Process Assessment, Community Services Values, Ethics & Professionalism and Referral; Theory, Methods & Working with Families and Children with Documentation Special Needs Workshops: Organizational Working with Youth/Transitional Understanding Identity and Workplace Aged/Newcomer Youth Dynamics Understanding Identity, Diversity and Inclusive Conflict Resolution Workplace Dynamics Principles, Policies and Practices in Welcoming Diversity in the Classroom Inclusive Organizational Change Cross Cultural Counselling: Competencies & Board Governance: Overview, ARAO Practice 101, Leading for Inclusive Documentation through a Cross Cultural Lens Organizational Change Inclusive Supervision Practices Staff Hiring and Recruitment Establishing Inclusive Group Norms Planning for Inclusive Organizational Development Leading Inclusive Organizational Development Strategies for setting up a Diversity Committee 8