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Case Vignette Paper

Yolanda Wyche (ev0650)


Ethics and Values in social work
Wayne State University

Case Vignette Paper

In this case scenario of the school social worker that comes in contact with a female sophomore
student. The student was recommended by a school friend to talk to the social worker concerning her
problem. Kate tells the social worker that her stepfather had been coming into her room at night and
touching her breast and vagina. She disclosed to the worker that this behavior had been going on for
several months until she finally told her mother about her stepfather behavior. Kate mother was upset
and asked her stepfather to leave. Kate does not want the social worker to report her stepfather. She feels
that her mother would be furious with her for doing so.
The school social worker has an ethical obligation to practice social work from. The (NASW)
guidelines and standards are this social worker premise. These principles and codes have to be adhered
by. The social worker should report Kates stepfather . If she is practicing by the (NASW) codes of
ethics. According to standard 1.01 of the code of ethics social workers primary responsibility is to
promote the well-being of clients. This standards goes on to state that social workers have
responsibilities to larger society and to obey the law. Furthermore, the state requires that the suspicion
or disclosure of child abuse or neglect be reported to other authorities. These other authorities may
include child protective services, police or other authorities designated by state laws. (Barsky, 2007 b).
This law is to protect vulnerable children. This law requires social workers or other professionals to
report child abuse and neglect even when they do not think it will happen again. Most states maintain a
database of child abuse and neglect reports which helps them to monitor and enforce child protection
concerns. This ethical standard is the core of social workers ethic.

Case Vignette Paper

In conclusion helping vulnerable persons and caring about the well-being of society is what
social worker do. It is a core value to their profession. The school social worker has a duty and
obligation to protect her client.
In a counter argument confidentiality is also a core value for practicing social workers. It is
important in the engagement stage to build trust from a client. The student did disclose sensitive and
personal information to the social worker. The student privacy is important and social workers should
provide a safe place for clients to talk and by reassuring clients that whatever they disclose will be kept
confidential. Kate may not want her mother to know that she talked to a social worker. Kate may fear
her mothers negative reactions towards her for disclosing private matters. She could also give the social
worker a reputation of being someone not to trust.
In conclusion confidentiality has limitations and exceptions. However, If a worker becomes
aware of a situation that can potentially harm a client or others it her legal and ethical obligation to
report the matter to authorities. In doing so the worker is acting in the best interest of her client and her
profession.

Case Vignette Paper

Reference Page
NASW code of ethics
Ethics and Values, (Barsky 2007).