Basingstoke Counselling

Ethical Framework

Ethical Framework Used In Counselling

Know how an ethical framework relates to the use of counselling skills

Identify an ethical framework

The importance of an ethical framework is to provide standards. It is also important to have a moral framework for the clients. I would identify an ethical framework in organisation such as the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) or UKCP (United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy) or the NAADAC (National association of alcoholism and drug abuse counsellors) These ethical frameworks are for counsellors, but also people in a listening capacity.

Identify key aspects of the ethical framework

The key aspects of the ethical framework are:
Values:  the ability to respect people’s human rights and clients safety. This will enhance the quality of a counselling relationship.
Integrity:  “commitment to being moral in dealings with others, personal straightforwardness, honesty and coherence.”  BCAP
Principles:   are important. To remain trustworthy, autonomy and beneficence.
Empathy: “ the ability to communicate understanding of another person’s experience from that person’s perspective.”  BCAP
Sincerity:  “a personal commitment to consistency between what is professed and what is done. BCAP
Resilience:   “the capacity to work with the client’s concerns without being personally diminished.” BCAP
Respect:   “showing appropriate esteem to others and their understanding of themselves.” BCAP
Humility:   “the ability to assess accurately and acknowledge one’s own strengths and weaknesses.” BCAP
Competence:  “the effective deployment of the skills and knowledge needed to do what is required.”  BCAP
Fairness:   “the consistent application of appropriate criteria to inform decisions and actions.“ BCAP
Wisdom:  “possession of sound judgement that informs practice.” BCAP
Courage: “the capacity to act in spite of known fears, risks and uncertainty.” BCAP

Describe how the ethical framework informs own use of counselling skills

An ethical framework helps me to use my counselling skills as it gives me a basis to work from.
Respecting human rights and dignity I commonly use. I seem to get told a lot in confidence which I assure the speaker I would not tell anyone.
Active listening is important to me as the speaker needs to know you are interested in what they are saying. Good eye contact is important for this. I find I use this lot in everyday life especially with my girlfriend.
Reflecting is the ability to repeat keywords to get a better understanding or go into more depth on a subject matter. I tend to use reflecting when talking to my girlfriend especially if she is cross.
Sincerity is best performed whilst listening. I find I can be sincere face to face or on the phone. 
Paraphrasing is great for checking for clear understanding. This is done by repeating a whole sentence. I find myself doing this at work with rehab centers especially when we are talking about people I have referred. 
Empathy, I find I tend to use my body language to establish empathy.
Silence is to me the greatest tool in counselling. It keeps the speaker talking. Again I use this with my girlfriend as she does not like to be interrupted and it enables her to get her point across. 
Ethical principles are important. These are obtained through a good ethical framework such as the BACP’s ethical framework. My girlfriend and I have ethical principles which we pass on to the children. 
Fidelity is faithfulness to a person, cause, or belief, demonstrated by continuing loyalty and support.
Resilience, I find if you use reflecting with someone who is angry, its stops you taking on or being a target for that anger. 
Non-verbal is more to do with head nodding, good eye contact etc. I tend to use the non-verbal when out with friends as it shows I am interested in what they are talking about without taking over the conversation.
Autonomy, I tend not to push my own agenda. When doing triad work there has been times I have wanted to ask things for my own curiosity, but haven’t.
Questions, it’s always good to ask a few questions, especially if you need things clarified. Again I use this a lot when talking to rehab centers to know the progress of clients.
Beginning and ending. There should be a clear beginning when starting a listening session. Such as “so where would you like to start today?”  This I use all the time in everyday life when starting pretty much all conversations.     

Know what discrimination means

Outline ways in which people experience discrimination

The ways in which people experience discrimination can vary from being disabled to having ginger hair. So what is discrimination? It can be summed up as to treat one particular group of people less favourably than others because of their race, gender, colour, age, nationality, or ethnic or national origin, sexuality etc. Here are a few examples;
Gender, men are being discriminated by women only gyms for example.
Race, a policy that requires all employees to be clean-shaven, as this would put Sikhs at a major disadvantage.
Age, an employer may refuse to employ people under the age of 30 years old.
Sexuality, this could include being bullied or harassed by your employer / work colleague on the grounds of your sexuality.
Other points to look at are:
Direct discrimination, eg, a university only shortlists male job applicants for an interview because they assume women will not fit in
Indirect discrimination, eg, This occurs when an organisation makes a decision, or puts in place a particular policy or practice, which, on the face of it appears to treat everyone equally, but which actually, in practice, leads to people from a protected group being treated less favourably than other people.
Associative discrimination, eg, Associative discrimination means direct discrimination against someone because they are ‘associated’ with another person who possesses a protected characteristic. For example, refusing to employ someone because their partner is a Muslim, even though the prospective employee is not themselves a Muslim.
Perceptive discrimination, eg, where someone is verbally abused because he is perceived to be a homosexual, even though he is actually heterosexual.
Harassment, The standard definition for harassment is unwanted conduct on the grounds of race, gender, sexual orientation etc. which has the purpose or effect of either violating the claimant’s dignity, or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them.
Victimisation occurs specifically when a person is treated less favourably because they have asserted there rights, either in making a complaint or in assisting in an investigation.
Positive discrimination, Positive discrimination means treating one person more favourably than another on the ground of that individual’s sex, race, age, marital status or sexual orientation. 
Organisational discrimination is discriminating against an organisation.

Describe own experience or observations of possible discrimination

My own experiences of possible discriminations started when I was at private school. I found it hard to play with the other children in the school holidays as they discriminated me for going to what they called a posh school. This still goes on today with people staying, “Mark will know, he went to a private school”.
My own observations of possible discrimination were when I owned a garage. I use to see the salesmen discriminating against the mechanics, ie, “who would want to be a grubby mechanic?” This was unfortunate, but mechanics due to the nature of their job were always covered in oil.  

Understand about anti-discriminatory practice

Describe key legal aspects of anti-discriminatory practice

The key legal aspects of anti-discriminatory practice are set out by international legislation and nation legislation. Key legal anti-discrimination practices can be found in acts such as the Equality Act 2010, (Details listed below),The Human Rights Act 1998, this gives further legal effect in the UK to the fundamental rights and freedoms contained in the European Convention on Human Rights.  The DDA, Disability discrimination act, The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) 1995 aims to end the discrimination that many disabled people face. This Act has been significantly extended, including by the Disability Discrimination Act 2005. It now gives disabled people rights in the areas of employment, access to goods, facilities and services, education and buying or renting land or property. Other ones is are the US constitution, The ACAS, Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service, and the equality act 2012 to name but a few.
The Equality Act 2010 has superseded various individual laws such as the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Disability Discrimination Act of 1995. There have also been some changes in the new 2010 act which include, Harassment: Employees can now complain of behaviour they find offensive even if it is not directed at them. These protected characteristics are age, disability, gender, race and religion or beliefs. There have also been some changes in the new 2010 act which include, Victimisation: Someone who is treated badly because a complaint or grievance under the Act. The protected characteristics for victimisation are sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender, race, marriage and civil partnerships, pregnancy and maternity, and religion or beliefs.
The Equality Act 2010 has new definitions of types of discrimination added. These are:
Discrimination By Association. “Direct discrimination against someone because they associate with another person who possesses a PC. Protected Characteristics are age, disability, gender and sex.”  Equality Act 2010
Discrimination By Perception. “Direct discrimination against someone because the others think they possess a particular PC. Protected Characteristics are disability and gender”.  Equality Act 2010
Indirect Discrimination. “Can occur when you have a rule or policy that applies to everyone but disadvantages a particular PC. Protected Characteristics are disability and gender”.  Equality Act 2010
Harassment By A Third Party. “Employers are potentially liable for harassment of their staff by people they don’t employ. Protected Characteristics are age, disability, gender, race religion or belief and sexual orientation”.  Equality Act 2010

Explain how diversity impacts on the counselling relationship

Diversity can impact on a counselling relationship because how empathic can we be to someone from a war torn country?  Being realistic, what do we know about how bad it is? Are they going to feel we don’t know what it’s like and just agreeing? How empathic can we be with a minority groups?  Are we personally aware of our own prejudice? Does a speakers prejudice impact on a counselling relationship? As a listener we are going to be confronted by all walks of life ie, Different nationalities, Religions, ethnicity, age, cultures, social status, disability and ability, lifestyles and cultures. As an example, a young man might make the assumption “you don’t get them” By ignoring diversity may lead to incorrect decisions or insufficient support and over emphasising may lead to little common ground. There are also the dangers of stereotyping and making assumptions. Just because someone is scruffy does not mean they are poor. Listening to a speaker much older than you may feel uncomfortable. Are they thinking what does the listener know? They are half my age. Listening to a speaker with a much higher or lower status than yourself.  Listening to a speaker with a disability, a stammer maybe. Listening to a speaker with a different lifestyle to yourself. These are all things which may impact diversity in a counselling relationship.

Demonstrate ways to address and diversity in counselling skills practice

The ways to address the diversity in counselling skills are as follows. With the earlier example of the young man making the assumptions “you don’t get me”, it may be an idea to try and use there wording, Ask them to explain or research certain aspects or interests they speak to you about.
In the situation where the speaker is much older than the listener, it may be an idea to discuss that you are aware of the age difference and are they happy to carry on and ask them if they feel the age difference is going to impact the sessions. It’s just a matter of being aware of each other’s differences.  
When being a listener to other nationalities it may be an idea to ask at the beginning of the contact “is there anything I need to be aware of? It would be a good idea to research people backgrounds and beliefs beforehand.
A female may not be happy to be alone with a male listener. Ask at the beginning of the contact and if needs be have someone on hand if this is the case.
If you are listening to a speaker from a war torn country as discussed above. Research the country they come from. Look on google maps so as you know the how the country looks. Is it dry and dusty  or wet and cold etc. Was it an affluent country before war broke out.
I feel the main thing is to make sure you understand as much as you can about the speaker. To be aware of your own differences, and values. Be aware of how you are perceived by others. It is also a good idea to ask ways in which the sessions may be changed to suit the speaker’s needs.  A good example of this would be females and male speakers not meeting after dark etc. Be aware of learning difficulties. Introduce pictures, graphs to help illustrate the concepts.

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