The National Victim Assistance Standards Consortium (NVASC) is a set of ethical principles intended to guide victim assistance providers in handling everyday matters and less frequent ethical conflicts by clearly outlining the expected professional behavior. Victim assistance providers’ work with extremely vulnerable populations and all measures must be taken to ensure the competent, honest and professional treatment of all persons served.
Ethical Standard 2.1 Defined
NVASC Ethical Standard 2.1 reads: “The victim assistance provider conducts relationships with colleagues and other professionals in such a way as to promote mutual respect, public confidence and improvement of service” (NVASC). This ethical standard highlights the transparency and interagency cooperation that is required as a public servant. Victim service departments exist in many different areas of community-based care, such as at a battered women’s shelter or at the state attorney’s office. Consequently, different agencies will have different professional relationships with other agencies. It is important that victim assistance providers contribute to public confidence and respect for their agency (NVASC). Victim advocates are working with a specialized population that have experienced a traumatic event. It is especially important that they communicate effectively with other agencies working with the victim to prevent any further damage from occurring. Additionally, this standard mandates that victim assistance providers are transparent regarding whom they are speaking on behalf of. If a representative of an agency is speaking on behalf of a victim, they must separate their own thoughts from what the victi...
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... not always as easy as it seems. One must review all relevant information, identify the ethical standards, contemplate different courses of action, seek advising from others, pick the best option and preform it and then evaluate the effectiveness of the action (Flannigan, The Decision Making Process). Under each Ethical Theory this decision making process will differ. For example, the Utilitarian Theory seeks to achieve the greatest amount of happiness for the greatest number of people (Banks, 2004). In the decision making process, the brainstorming process would be much different under Utilitarian Theory to achieve happiness than it would be under Rawlsian Theory to achieve social justice. Regardless, the Decision Making Process is important for all victim assistance providers to know and understand to make sound ethical decisions in victim services (Flannigan).
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