Values and Standards, Discrimination and Disadvantage

The main nature of this assignment is to attempt to demonstrate an understanding of Social Work Ethical Principles, Values and Standards, Discrimination and Disadvantage. The assignment will include my personal values including ‘Honesty’ and ‘Respect’ the relevant theory, and how this relates to The College of Social Work, Code of Ethics. Within the assignment, reference will be made to Thompsons Personal Cultural Structural (PCS) model and an explanation will be provided on how values can be shaped.

There will be focus on ethical dilemmas, discrimination and disadvantage and how they can relate to scenario three, and how The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) would influence my practice. ‘Values’ can be regarded as particular types of belief that people hold about what is regarded as worthy or valuable’. (Banks, 2012, p.8). Values are apparent in our actions, and have numerous definitions. However; personal values can be very difficult to define as many kinds of beliefs can be seen as a value.

We are all shaped by early socialisation (Social Learning Theory) which becomes learned behaviour. One of my personal values is honesty, as a child I was always encouraged to provide truthful information and was punished if I was ever caught telling untruths. The link between the action of telling untruths and the punishment served, acted as a deterrent, however; as I matured, personal experiences helped to embed this value.

This fits with Albert Bandura’s suggestion that people learn from observing the behaviours, attitudes (and subsequent outcomes) of others. This was evidenced by the famous bobo doll experiment, where a teacher hit and kicked the bobo doll in front of a classroom of children. At a later date the children were filmed when alone with the Bobo doll and were seen to imitate the behaviour that they had observed

Another personal values is respect, and is linked to College of Social Work code of ethics. The following two Ethics are most relevant to my personal values and case scenario three, which I will look at in more detail later in the assignment.  Respect the rights of people who use social work services and their carers including their right to take reasonable risks, while seeking to ensure that their behaviour does not harm themselves or others. Code of Ethics (The College of Social Work 2012).  Establish and maintain the trust and confidence of people who use social work services and their carers’, promoting their independence while protecting them as far as possible from unwanted danger. Code of Ethics (The College of Social Work 2012).

Respecting that each person is an individual and that some people have different opinions, values and beliefs is paramount in the profession of Social Work. If we were to take the same approach with everyone, we would not achieve the desired outcomes for all. Each person is different and will require a different approach. Respecting decisions people make is important, even if we feel that the individual is making an unwise decision, we should treat them with dignity, if the individual has mental capacity, we should respect them and their choices.

Scenario three could be open to Discrimination and Disadvantage. According to the Cambridge dictionary ‘Discrimination is treating a person or a particular group of people differently especially in a worse way in which to treat other people because of their colour, gender, sexuality etc’. And ‘Disadvantage is a condition or situation that causes problems especially ones that deny people equal access to housing education, employment, social integration etc. Which means they may be less likely to achieve their personal best or to be less successful.