As part of Bill 21, ACSLPA, like all other professional colleges, developed an additional SoP related to the conduct of its regulated members.
The new SoP include when it is appropriate and inappropriate for regulated members to enter into sexual relationships as it relates to the definition of “patient”.
The New SoP went to member consultation and were approved by the Health Minister in April 2019 and are now in force. The SoP can be viewed on our website as Standard Area 5.0 Sexual Abuse and Sexual Misconduct.
ACSLPA Standards of Practice
Apart from the introduction of Standard Area 5.0 Sexual Abuse and Sexual Misconduct, ACSLPA has always maintained SoPs related to professional relations and boundaries which are also interconnected with the Code of Ethics.
Standard 3.3, Professional Boundaries, states that “a regulated member of ACSLPA acts with integrity and maintains appropriate professional boundaries with clients, professional colleagues, students and others at all times”.
The indicators that demonstrate the behavior in order to meet the standard include:
- an understanding of the distinction between professional and nonprofessional relationships, the elements of power and trust and the situations when professional boundaries could be compromised (e.g., treatment of family members, friends).
- respect and responsible behavior to clients and colleagues at all times including avoiding sexually suggestive comments/actions or the expression of opinions/ remarks that could violate professional boundaries.
- exercising additional care to ensure that informed consent is obtained for procedures that clients could misinterpret (e.g., touching and physical closeness).
- terminating the professional relationship if boundaries cannot be established or maintained, transferring care as necessary.
- protecting the integrity of his/her profession by being responsible and accountable for his/her actions at all times (including personal interactions and the use of social media).
The expected outcome by ACSLPA has always been that clients and colleagues can expect that their relationships with the regulated members are respectful and that professional boundaries are maintained.
Each regulated member of ACSLPA is accountable for practicing in accordance with all our SoPs, regardless of role, practice area or practice setting. Practicing in breach of the Standards of Practice or Code of Ethics may constitute unprofessional conduct.