Ethical Dilemmas In Mental Health Counselors

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Mental health counselors encounter many ethical dilemmas in forensic settings. This paper will discuss two ethical dilemmas encounters in forensic treatment settings. It will also examine the complication the dilemmas have on treatment in forensic settings. Lastly, it will communicate guidelines and ethical principles in resolving each dilemma. Two Encountered Dilemmas One ethical dilemma that mental health counselors encounter would be institutional policies against disclosure (Substance Abuse and mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA, 2005). In addition, it is important for counselors to identify their clients. Moreover, counselors may have one legal client, but faced with several ethical clients. Disclosure of information of client’s confidentiality need to be protected by counselors, which can be difficult when information has been court ordered. Foote and Shuman (2006) points out clients are sent by lawyers for an assessment of their mental or emotional state of mind, which mean…show more content…
In addition, they are confronted with informed consent, competence, dual relationships, confidentiality, and social responsibility to their clients. For instance, “when psychologists are required by law, institutional policy, or extraordinary circumstances to serve in more than one role in judicial or administrative proceedings, at the outset they clarify role expectations and the extent of confidentiality and thereafter as changes occur.” Moreover, specialty guidelines for forensic psychologists tackle areas of competence, relationships, confidentiality, and privilege, which correctional counseling is given limited attention. Furthermore, counselors are faced with maintaining confidentiality, informed consent, not facing boundary violations, getting informed consent, maintaining competence, and guarding with dual relationships with their
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