Private practices. Mental health clinics. Child welfare service agencies. Occupying a variety of professional settings, social workers are united by a shared mission: helping others live better lives. In order to do that, they must first understand what makes their clients tick. As a social worker, studying different social work theories and social work practice models can help to bring you closer to your clients — equipping you with actionable insights that inform empathetic, evidence-based service.
A List of Ethical Dilemmas Facing Social Work
The Thing About Dating & Social Work - Confessions of a Banshee
Empathy is a core human attribute — but it is far from infallible. In social work, an empathy gap tied to racial identity can lead to worse outcomes for people of color. We like to think of ourselves and our colleagues as empathetic, but our experiences and actions can often contradict this notion. What does this mean for education and the world at large, and how can we improve this? Terence Fitzgerald , clinical associate professor at the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work and scholar of institutional racism, policy and child welfare, shares his recent research on racial empathy in social work. Social work as a profession has this general myth, too.
Essential Skills and Traits for Social Workers
Ethics in social work are related to core values of service, social justice, the dignity of the individual, the importance of human relationships, integrity and competence, according to the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers. This code of ethics has been in place since to delineate the expectations for behavior among social workers, as a reference to determine what behavior is ethical in a given situation and as a set of standards to help assess whether a social worker has engaged in unethical conduct. Some of the basic ethical expectations for social workers include maintaining confidentiality, obtaining informed consent and avoiding conflicts of interest. Sexual contact with a patient is absolutely forbidden under any circumstances.
A social worker's professional relationship with a client intersects with the client's relationships to family and community. Sometimes conflicts arise between the social worker's professional obligation to a client — the client's right to confidentiality, for example — and the social worker's own ethics, her concern for the client's well-being or her obligation to the community. These conflicts can arise as well with agencies, administrators or colleagues.