Rehabilitation counselors are committed to facilitating the personal, social, and economic independence of individuals with disabilities. In fulfilling this commitment, rehabilitation counselors work with people, programs, institutions, and service delivery systems. Rehabilitation counselors provide services within the Scope of Practice for Rehabilitation Counseling (see the Scope of Practice document) and recognize that both action and inaction can be facilitating or debilitating. It is essential that rehabilitation counselors demonstrate adherence to ethical standards and ensure that the standards are enforced vigorously. The Code of Professional Ethics for Rehabilitation Counselors, henceforth referred to as the Code, is designed to facilitate these goals.
The fundamental spirit of caring and respect with which the Code is written is based upon five principles of ethical behavior. These include autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, justice, and fidelity, as defined below:
Autonomy: To honor the right to make individual decisions.
Beneficence: To do good to others.
Nonmaleficence: To do no harm to others.
Justice: To be fair and give equally to others.
Fidelity: To be loyal, honest, and keep promises.
The primary obligation of rehabilitation counselors is to their clients, defined in the Code as individuals with disabilities who are receiving services from rehabilitation counselors. Regardless of whether direct client contact occurs or whether indirect services are provided, rehabilitation counselors are obligated to adhere to the Code. At times, rehabilitation counseling services may be provided to individuals other than those with disabilities, such as a student population. In all instances, the primary obligation remains with the client and adherence to the Code is required.
The basic objective of the Code is to promote public welfare by specifying ethical behavior expected of rehabilitation counselors. The Enforceable Standards within the Code are the exacting standards intended to provide guidance in specific circumstances and will serve as the basis for processing ethical complaints initiated against certificants.
Rehabilitation counselors who violate the Code are subject to disciplinary action. Since the use of the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC®) and Canadian Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CCRC®) designations are a privilege granted by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC®), CRCC Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification reserves unto itself the power to suspend or to revoke the privilege or to approve other penalties for a violation. Disciplinary penalties are imposed as warranted by the severity of the offense and its attendant circumstances. All disciplinary actions are undertaken in accordance with published procedures and penalties designed to assure the proper enforcement of the Code within the framework of due process and equal protection under the law.
(the above is unofficial text for cross reference purposes)
Source Document - The CRCC Code of Professional Ethics for Rehabilitation Counselors