1. Addictions can be treated.
2. Addictions affect individuals, families and communities.
3. Addictions counselling is a rapidly evolving profession. Students are taught to value life-long learning, flexibility and diversity; anticipate, recognize and promote change to counselling practice when and where appropriate; apply professional standards to assess their practice methods and clients’ progress.
4. Addictions counsellors must have sufficient breadth of personal and professional knowledge and skills to identify and understand problems related to addictions as experienced by diverse people in different contexts. Their attitudes, beliefs and values must facilitate, rather than impede, the process of helping.
5. Meaningful practice and policy development must be guided by theory and research, which in turn contributes to theory and research. To be effective practitioners, graduates must be conversant with the development and application of practice, theory, research and policy.
6. Supervised practice in counselling individuals and families experiencing problems related to addictions is critical for the development of a helping practitioner. The curriculum reflects the primacy of supervised field experience.
7. Addictions counselling must be research-based. Graduates of the program must have the skills to use the research literature appropriately, generate valid and reliable information as needed and contribute to our growing understanding of the field.
8. Our vision of health is holistic and includes physical, emotional, social and spiritual dimensions of individuals, families and communities.
9. The achievement of a healthy society depends, first and foremost, upon promotion of behaviours and creation of social and physical environments that foster health. In consequence, health promotion among individuals, families and communities is stressed without diminishing the importance of the maintenance, curative and rehabilitative roles of health professionals.
Standards of Professional Conduct
The ethical standards expected of students and faculty are those found in the Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics of the Canadian Counselling Association (CCA) (1999). The CCA code is very lengthy and students are required to familiarize themselves with the details, located at the following website, as directed by their instructors: www.ccacc.ca/coe.htm
The fundamental principles of the CCA Code are:
a. Respect for the dignity of persons
b. Not willfully harming others
c. Integrity in relationships
d. Responsible caring
e. Responsibility to society
f. Respect for self-determination