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6 Ethical Principles in Counseling - PowerPoint Slideshow

Will your action assist the person in achieving his/her employment ...

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6 Ethical Principles in Counseling

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6 Ethical Principles in Counseling

(Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification)

  • Beneficence

  • Autonomy

  • Non-Maleficence

  • Fidelity

  • Justice

  • Veracity

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Beneficence“To do good to others”

Acting in a manner that promotes the welfare of the client

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Beneficence Factors and Risks

  • Will your action assist the person in achieving his/her employment goals?

  • Has the person assessed the benefits vs the harm, costs, or burdens that may occur?

  • Taken to the extreme, beneficence becomes paternalism – not partnership and collaboration.

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Autonomy“To honor the right to make individual decisions”

Acting in a manner that respects a person’s freedom to control his or her own life.

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Autonomy Factors and Risks

  • Competency to make specific decisions

  • Autonomous choice may be limited by restrictions of agency policy and/or state law

  • Autonomy, taken to its extreme, may compromise other ethical principles.

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Non-Maleficence“To do no harm to others”

Acting in a manner that does not cause harm or prevents harm to clients

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Non-Maleficence Factors and Risks

  • Levels of risk can be idiosyncratic

  • Your action has to be based on the scope of your expertise and knowledge

  • The need to protect society – or the person - can compromise other ethical principles like Autonomy (confidentiality)

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Fidelity“To be loyal and honest”

Keeping promises or commitments, both stated and implied.

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Fidelity Factors and Risks

  • You must understand your organization’s and the profession’s standards, principles, policies, and procedures.

  • It can be tough to:

    • Live up to a plan you inherit

    • Be loyal to a policy you don’t agree with

    • Stay current with developments in the field when you already have full hands

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Justice“To be fair and give equally to others”

Treating people fairly, especially in allocation of resources

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People must be treated individually and fairly

Professionals must advocate for the fair treatment of people with disabilities

Your method of allocating scarce resources may be perceived as unfair – no matter what it is

Justice Factors and Risks

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Allocating Scarce Resources

  • Equal shares – everyone gets the same

  • Needs – each according to his/her needs

  • Effort – people who put forth more get more resources

  • Contribution

    • Payback (before or after services)

    • Free market

    • Cost effectiveness

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Veracity“To be honest”

Not engaging in an act or omission of a dishonest, deceitful or fradulent nature

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Veracity of Electronic


Assisting clients in determining the validity and reliability of information found on the Internet and/or other technology applications.