Protection of the Public

Protection of the Public

10.1.1. Social Workers shall cite an educational degree only after it has been conferred by an educational institution.

10.1.2. Social Workers shall identify and explain their education, training, experience, professional affiliation, professional registration and nature of service in an honest and accurate manner.

10.1.3. Social Workers shall not claim formal social work education in an area of expertise or training solely by attending a single lecture, demonstration, conference, workshop or similar teaching presentation.

10.1.4. Social Workers shall conspicuously display a current certificate of registration and membership issued by the regulatory body at their office

10.1.5. Social Workers shall distinguish between actions and statements made as private citizens and actions and statements as Social Workers, recognizing that Social Workers are obliged to ensure that no outside interest brings the profession to disrepute. 1

10.2.1. Social Workers who believe that a colleague has not taken adequate steps to address their impairment to professional practice shall take action through appropriate channels established by employers, their regulatory body or other professional organizations if there is a concern for the potential harm of clients.

10.2.2. Social Workers shall report to their regulatory body (the NSCSW’s Board of Examiners) information on the following conduct by an applicant or a registered Social Worker that adversely affects or harms a client or prevents the effective delivery of a social service.

  • Sexual contact or sexual conduct with a client or a former client.
  • Failure to report as required by law.
  • Impairment in the ability to practice by reason of illness, use of alcohol, drugs or other chemicals, or as a result of any mental or physical condition.
  • Improper or fraudulent billing practices.
  • Fraud in the licensure application process or any other false statements made to the Board.
  • Conviction of any criminal offence reasonably related to the practice of social work.
  • Any other conduct by any individual applicant or registered Social Worker that constitutes grounds for disciplinary action under the Nova Scotia Social Workers Act, the Code of Ethics and the Standards of Practice.
  • Any unqualified or unregistered person who is practising social work.

10.2.3. When information about a violation is obtained from a client, a Social Worker shall notify the client of the Social Worker’s obligation to report the information to the Board of Examiners of the NSCSW.

10.2.4. If a client refuses to consent to release of their name, a Social Worker shall report the violation without providing information that would identify the client.

10.3.1. Notwithstanding any other provisions of the Code of Ethics and these Standards of Practice, and subject to any limitations imposed by law, Social Workers shall fully cooperate with investigations into matters of complaint against themselves and other Social Workers in order to assist with the protection of the public.

10.4.1. Social Workers shall provide professional services during public emergencies to the greatest extent possible.

  1. A Social Worker’s private life is a personal matter to the same degree as it is for any other citizen, except as it may compromise the fulfillment of professional responsibilities, or reduce the public trust in social work and Social Workers. If a Social Worker’s behaviour would likely constitute conduct unbecoming a professional Social Worker, the regulatory body may consider a complaint and take appropriate action.