Ethics Paper

Topics: Ethics, Morality, Social work Pages: 5 (1791 words) Published: March 26, 2013

Ethics in Social Services
All of us at a certain point of time have to encounter the situation of ethical dilemma in personal or professional life. In any field of life, there are certain ethics that every associated professional has to follow. In social services, focus on ethical behavior is of importance, as it is a part of the nature of these services. The social workers many times go through situations where they have to face moral or ethical dilemmas, which can be due to many reasons. This can be due to pressure from many sides such as management, colleagues, junior staff, clients, funding agencies. A social worker has to take hard steps in such situations to overcome those dilemmas, but before that he has to consider all aspects and stakeholders of an issue. It is sure that any of the decision can satisfy only one of the parties involved, and this will affect relations with others. One such case is mentioned and analyzed from all directions in the further sections of this paper. Ethical Dilemma Case Summary: Danny Needs Help

This case starts with Richard who is a social worker in a community agency that provides counseling and temporary shelter for children or youth that are abused and troubled by their families. One such case, which he recently undertook was of Denny. Denny is a 15 year old teenager, whose parents were seriously abusive, as Richard finds out after going through the case. He wants the state to accept the custody of Denny and to achieve success in this; he visited the state human services office for many weeks. He thinks the ill treatment against Danny can be proved convincingly against state, as he has faced mental and physical consequences. Richard is hopeful as the law in this regard clearly supports the condition Denny is facing. If a child has faced abuse from any of the family members and is in forthcoming danger, then he has the right to ask for the guardianship of the state (Reamer, 2002).

Janice, who is a senior official and state worker, works with Richard on similar cases. She is also as much caring for children and teenagers as Richard is. She believes that Denny needs some extra care and efforts by surrounding people, but is not in support of state custody for him. Richard has, therefore, an ethical dilemma in the case. He realizes that with a limited budget and the now tightened restrictions on the agency Janice has some limitations and cannot grant state custody to Denny. He wants the best treatment for Denny, but if he approaches the higher officials seeking this, then this would affect his relations with Janice, as both deal with several cases together. Ethical Dilemma in Social Services

To understand the case and arrive at some conclusion, first we need to look at the concept of ethical dilemma for people working in social services. It is a well known fact that social workers routinely encounter ethical dilemma in their professional lives. The social work programs also impart education with professional ethics and values in order to make students helpful in preparing for their prospective professional life (Ebbesen, Anderson & Pederson, 2012).

There are commonly three conditions that put a person in an ethical dilemma. The first is the situation occurring when an individual has to make a decision on the best course of action. This individual is called an agent. Here, the situations should have a choice to be called ethical dilemmas. If a student is working as an intern under a social work field instructor, then in any case he has to discuss issues with him. Therefore, in such a case, there is no case of breach of confidentiality hence; there is no situation of an ethical dilemma. The second condition for an ethical dilemma is the availability of different courses of action to choose from. In the third one, the dilemma is said to be when while taking any course of action, the decision makers have...
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