Addictions professionals are in a unique position in that they must maintain confidentiality while possessing exclusive knowledge about behavior that may result in injury. How do they balance these conflicting priorities? Under special protection, addictions professionals have the duty to warn and protect if they become aware clients are acting in a way in which their addiction may harm themselves or others. Understanding your legal and ethical obligations and the resulting social consequences is essential when working with an impaired individual whose decisions may have life or death consequences for others.
For this Discussion, review this week’s resources as well as the ones that you find in the Walden Library and reputable sources on the Internet. Reflect on different situations in which “duty to warn and protect” laws apply in your state (Georgia). Select a duty to warn and protect law that applies to your role as an addiction professional in the community. Consider why your selected law is important.
Post a summary of the duty to warn and protect law in your state (Georgia). Then explain issues or events that necessitated the creation of the law. Be specific and provide examples to support your response. Additionally, describe either an addendum that would strengthen the existing law or a new law that you would create and enact to further protect the rights of clients impaired by addictions. What inequity or limitation are you attempting to address? What outcomes would you like to see if your law passed? Support your response using the resources and the current literature.