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Discussion

Ethics is an important part of life for any kind of organization or group rather than a community to serve others. The ethical principles and concepts in the community services in this case more specifically Australian community service will be discussed in depth. The idea is to give the basic concepts of ethics and principles. Also to show how ethical decision-making is an important part of the community services. Ethical decision-making models are extremely useful and important they not only keep the activity and the group on the correct tracks of ethics but also make sure that every decision made and every step taken are ethical and no negative factors can affect the whole process. One of the ethical decision-making models will be selected and discussed further in-depth in terms of its importance and how it functions.

Ethics is a very difficult word to be understood at times it is confused ways of making laws and religion or other factors. However, it is simply the means to make sure that no negative decisions are made discipline is maintained and corruption is prevented. Ethics provides a very important set of standards for behavior that allows us to decide how we can act in a wide range of situations. In simpler terms, the idea can be said to be making choices and providing reasons why these choices should be made (Act, 2016).

The concept of community service is to look after the whole community in general. Their aim is not profit-making or marketing. They do not even have the intention of expansion or fame. Some of the important aspects are to facilitate the interests and the various rights of the people and to educate them of their rights, to develop and maintain new and old networks and collaborative partnerships also aim at increasing networking opportunities, use effective communication to build a solid relationship. Their only objective is to serve the community and take the initiative towards various community development projects. One of the most popular and effective projects during recent times and perhaps a still ongoing process and rapid growth is the Covid-19 relief measures. When the global pandemic hit the entire world was in chaos. That is when Community Service Participation was at its peak and was needed the most. Starting from delivering medicines to food and other essentials to the doorsteps of the people due to lockdown restrictions was the most effective. Also to provide free food and other essentials to all those in need especially the homeless and the people who lost their job in the pandemic. Australian community services even took the initiative of having a dedicated helpline number and web page for ease of communication with the different communities that might need medical attention and other kinds of support to survive (Australian Association of Social Workers, 2022).

These are the projects where ethics play a major role, without the principles the project or the members may be affected. For example, such projects or other community services have a huge allocation of funds and other resources. These are allocated to help the people in need and for other kinds of support mainly to the community. If ethics are not followed then people involved can easily take these resources and use them for their gain or may use the infrastructure and other factors for personal profit and personal aims (Cardona et al., 2017). Coming to the more technical part even though most of it is voluntary, it is to be understood that even the volunteers need basic knowledge and skills. People with the ambition of working in community service enroll themselves in various courses and training programs that focus on helping them to become better service providers. Also to obtain all the skills to be dynamic in helping and contributing to the community programs.

Australian community worker ethics principles

Australian community worker ethics principles

  • No discrimination that is every human being irrespective of their race, religion, gender, and age are to be treated equally and should be respected at all cost.
  • To understand and encourage social inclusion. The concept of social inclusion states that has the right to play a role in society and everyone has the right to equal participation rights in social, economic, and educational factors.
  • Every human being is to be protected against discrimination based on gender, the religion they follow, race, and disability.
  • The Australian community workers association makes sure that their first people are recognized their right to self-determination (Alston & Bowles, 2019).

The ethical decision-making model that can be considered is the Bowen model for strategic decision-making. This model specifically serves only the purpose of ethical decision-making. This focuses on fixing the ethical issues that are issue management, professionals use such models to make the correct decision in a management process (Banks, 2020). Here Bowen suggests that the first step should be to make sure that the professional is autonomous in decision making. That is that anyone involved in the decisions making should not be influenced by internal factors or external factors (Franco et al., 2015). They should make the decision based on the facts and their understanding. When it comes to community service the head of the project or any department should not be influenced by other departments or other people (Ka?erauskas, 2019). For example, politicians or business leaders can influence their decision in favor of their products and services meaning business leaders can bribe or use other methods of influence to make the community service decision-makers select their products or give the contract or accept their quotation for their profit. This situation is to be avoided or checked before any decision is made. Then the second step is to think about the public and consider the key duties to their client and the public. Here in the community service scenario, the people in charge have to think of the general public they are serving to. Their duties and various responsibilities towards them are to be thought off before making the decision. After considering all facts and other key elements the decision-makers should make a decision that is in the best interest of the community they are serving. So during the Covid-19 pandemic situation decisions made should be in favor of helping the sick and needy. If serving the community is the main aim then decisions made should involve how to improve their logistics for more reach so that they can provide the essentials such as food and medicine to the people (Bowen, 2005). Focusing on making a profit or saving funds should not be a part of their planning or decision-making. The final phase of the model is a reflection and asking themselves the ethical questions. Questions such as what would they have done or felt if they were on the other side. Communication cannot be made directly with no purpose it must have emotions and empathy. The service providers must understand the people more and connect with them deeper. After the reflection of what these people are going through at such tough times during the pandemic, they must think how happy they would have been if at times like these they received help. Only this can help them understand the community better and then they can create a communication plan that should be carefully crafted so that it does not insult or discriminate against anyone. After that, they must choose the easiest medium of communication to reach the maximum number of people so a mode of communication that is accessible by people. After all these thought processes they are to take the decision and implement everything along the way step by step to make their project or activity successful (Sidgwick, 2019).

Conclusions

It can be concluded that ethics can be explained by different people in different ways based on their perspectives however the fact that it is the way of doing the correct thing with good intentions will always remain. Every society, community, and organization has the necessity of ethics and must be present to make them better in general in terms of their morality and functions. Decision-making needs the involvement of ethics just to make sure that the decision made is in favor of a positive outcome and the process or the decision, in general, is fair. Various models can be used to maintain ethics however it depends on the mindset of human beings as they need to have a clear and proper mindset of maintaining ethics then only automatically decision making and its outcome will be fair, improved, and better in general. 

Reference

Act, C. (2016). Code of Ethics.

Alston, M., & Bowles, W. (2019). Research for social workers: An introduction to methods. Routledge.

Australian Association of Social Workers 2020. (2022). AASW Code of ethics [Ebook]. North Melbourne. Retrieved from https://www.aasw.asn.au/document/item/13400

Banks, S. (2020). Ethics and values in social work. Bloomsbury Publishing.

Cardona, B., Fine, M., Stebbing, A., Duncan, C., Samsa, P., & Eagar, K. (2017). Measuring consumer outcomes: development and testing of the Australian Community Care Outcomes Measure. Australasian journal on ageing, 36(1), 69-71.

Code of Ethics - AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers. (2022). Retrieved 30 January 2022, from https://www.aasw.asn.au/practitioner-resources/code-of-ethics#:~:text=The%20Code%20of%20Ethics%20of,pursuit%20of%20the%20profession's%20aims.

Ethics & Standards - AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers. (2022). Retrieved 30 January 2022, from https://www.aasw.asn.au/practitioner-resources/ethics-standards

Franco, Z. E., Flower, M., Whittle, J., & Sandy, M. (2015). Professional ethics and virtue ethics in community-engaged healthcare training. In Professional responsibility (pp. 211-229). Springer, Cham.

Ka?erauskas, T. (2019). Ethics in business and communication: common ground or incommensurable?.

Sidgwick, H. (2019). The methods of ethics. Good Press.

Bowen, S. A. (2005). A practical model for ethical decision making in issues management and public relations. Journal of Public Relations Research, 17(3), 191-216.

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