Ethical Dilemmas and Decision Making in Behavioral Health: How to Practice in a Safe and Ethical Way

As a mental health professional, you are confronted on a regular basis with the challenges of complex ethical and legal issues. Knowing and applying an eth...
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Linda Cherrey Reeser
6 Hours 8 Minutes
Audio and Video
May 17, 2019


As a mental health professional, you are confronted on a regular basis with the challenges of complex ethical and legal issues. Knowing and applying an ethical decision making framework will provide you with tools to:

  • Manage ethical issues in a systematic way
  • Separate facts from assumptions and biases
  • Track the potential harms of each course of action
  • Formulate an ethical rationale for selecting the least harmful option
  • Decide on the most appropriate way to implement your choice
  • Assess what went wrong, or could go wrong, so you can prevent it from happening

Watch this recording and learn a unique decision making model that does not tell you which ethical principle is most important (as do some other models), but provides you with options and raises critical questions to help you decide which principal trumps others. Learning this model will also help you to formulate reasons for choosing how to intervene with other professionals or clients in an ethical and safe way. This reflective model will enable you to be the proactive practitioner you want to be!

Through case examples, you will be able to apply the skills right away! Case examples will focus on the issues of confidentiality, informed consent, boundaries and dual relationships and self-determination.



Linda Cherrey Reeser, PhD Related seminars and products: 1

Linda Cherrey Reeser, PhD, is a licensed social worker who has been teaching and consulting in Michigan for over 30 years. Dr. Reeser’s areas of professional expertise include ethics, professionalism, field education, activism and social change.

Dr. Reeser wrote a book on ethics with Dr. Wade Robison, Ethical Decision Making in Social Work (Allyn & Bacon). She is a long-standing member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and has served on the Michigan Chapter Board as well as the Michigan NASW Ethics Committee.

Dr. Reeser is a full professor in the School of Social Work at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo Michigan, where she serves as the coordinator of the BSW program, and has been teaching undergraduate and graduate social work students for 34 years.

She received the Teaching Excellence Award from her college and the NASW Michigan Chapter Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to the social work profession. She has been sought out by lawyers for her expertise in ethics. Her practice experience is in criminal justice and substance abuse.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Linda Cherrey Reeser is a professor at Western Michigan University, School of Social Work. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Nonfinancial: Linda Cherrey Reeser has no relevant nonfinancial relationship to disclose.