Mental Health Professionals Have Been The Targets Of Violent Threats Essay

Mental Health Professionals Have Been The Targets Of Violent Threats Essay

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According to Davis (2008), mental health professionals have been the targets of violent threats. The setting these threats are common is mental health inpatient settings, child protective services settings, hospitals, and criminal justice settings (i.e., probation departments). The state of Montana conducted a study and found that over thirty percent of child safety workers reported that they had received threats on their life from their clients that they were in contact with the previous year.
However, clinicians cannot forget about providing the equal amount of safety or their clients. A tremendous amount of clients is rap, domestic violence victims, and victims just because they have a mental illness. Clients are securitized in society sometimes because of the mental health condition. Counselors need to protect these clients to the best of their ability. Not to mention the risk that clients can cause themselves because of their mental health issues; for example, cutting behaviors and suicidal behaviors. Clinicians need to be vigilant in recognizing the risk to themselves and their clients. Clinicians need to have a set plan on how they will protect themselves and clients.
Research on Counselor Safety
Counselors need to ensure they are safe when counseling. According to Despenser (2005), counselors seem to still neglect the safety of themselves from potentially harmful clients. Counselors are not the only ones that are neglecting the issue. According to Depenser (2005), there seems to be neglect in the literature and not enough trainings on this potentially lethal issue. She also reports that there is also a lack of conversation between therapist on this issue. Clinicians should automatically have alarm systems;...


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...d (2013, pp. 81-82 suggest those nine strategies are; creating awareness with the client, allowing catharsis, providing support, promoting expansion, emphasizing focus, providing guidance, promoting mobilization, implementing order, providing protection.
Counselors need to be aware of the risk to themselves and their clients when trying to defuse crisis situations. Clinicians have to take every possible precaution to make sure their clients are safe and the clinician is in a safe situation. Clinicians need to express to their clients the need for safety and come up a plan with the client if the client does not feel safe. If the clinician does not feel safe the clinician needs to come up with a plan with their supervisor. It is the clinicians’ responsibility to understand the culture of their client and identify the cultural factors have on the crisis situation.

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