Consultation and Advocacy in Counseling

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Consultation and Advocacy in Counseling
Donna Boyett
COUN 5004
Survey of Research in Human Development for Professional Counselors August 4, 2012

195 Wayfair Lane
Hinesville, GA 31313
Telephone: (912) 980-1231
Email: Donna.Boyett@hotmail.com
Instructor: Kathy Blaydes
Abstract
This paper discuses the importance of social justice advocacy and consultation in the counseling profession. The introduction is an explanation of social justice advocacy, and the different ways counselors advocate for their clients. Next, I discussed how I see myself related to advocacy as I become a professional within my area of specialization and my belief about the similarities between advocacy and consultation. After that I discussed how advocacy benefits the care provided to children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families related to the specific specialty area that I plan to practice. Lastly, I described a hypothetical situation of a child, adolescent, adult, couple, or family, and addressed how a counselors' knowledge of consultation and advocacy could interact with the progression of their counseling experience based on my area of specialization.

Consultation and Advocacy in Counseling
Many counselors (past, present, and future) believe that social justice advocacy has no place in counseling. However, “Scholars propose that integrating a social justice advocacy role into the core identity of professional counselors will help redress past and current societal oppression of marginalized populations” (Moe, Perera-Diltz, & etc, 2010). In 2001 the U.S. Surgeon General’s report emphasized the relationship between mental health and discrimination, poverty, and oppression (Moe, Perera-Diltz, & etc., 2010). Social justice in counseling takes place when counselors strive to simultaneously promote human development and the common good through addressing challenges to both individual and distributive justice (Crethar &Ratts, n.d.). Counselors can do this in many different ways, such as educating and empowering the client, educating groups that affect the client, actively confronting the injustice and inequality in society as they impact clients, and serve as a mediator between the client and institutions, negotiate with agencies to provide better services (Kiely &Ohrt, n.d.). So in this paper I will cover the following topics: How I see myself related to advocacy or consultation as I become a professional within my area of specialization, Do I see consultation and advocacy as similar or different, How advocacy benefits the care provided to children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families related to the specific specialty area that I plan to practice, and lastly, I will also create a hypothetical situation of a child, adolescent, adult, couple, or family, and address how counselors' knowledge of consultation and advocacy could interact with the progression of their counseling experience based on my area of specialization. So let’s go ahead and begin with how I see myself related to advocacy or consultation, as I become a professional within my area of specialization.

Some people think that mental illness is caused by internal factors such as biological and psychological factors. While biological and psychological factors do play a part in mental illness, this is not the whole story. Environmental factors can also be a cause of mental illness. As a mental health counselor, I will see clients of all ages, ethnicities, genders, disabilities, sexual orientations, and religions. It will be my job to assist and work with clients on issues that impact their psychological state and overall well-being. Since oppression can affect a person’s psychological state and well-being, it will therefore be my job to be an advocate for those clients that are being oppressed in order to help their psychological state. Advocacy is just a part of social justice in counseling. Many scholars debate whether social justice advocacy and...
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