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Parole Office’s Work Environment and Ethical Dilemma

Analysis of Work Environment

​Professional issues

According to Gregory (2010), the professional roles of a parole officer are to manage the cases of clients with different health issues. A study by Gregory (2010) established that professionalism entails the supervision of clients to ensure public safety. The professional parole officer dealing with offenders in the community using specialized knowledge and skills. The profession entails a parole officer to be honest, true to his work, committed, ethical, and altruistic, and must show intellect and responsibility when on duty (Petersilia, 2001). Petersilia (2001) argues that a professional must honestly deal with clients with unselfishness and develop a positive attitude based on professional motivational qualifiers, which support the basic tenets of the professional code of ethics in writing professionally, qualified reports on offenders to ensure their safe return to the community.

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​Reporting relationships

According to Gregory (2010), the professional code of ethics and the issues to address, including reviewing cases by meticulously collecting information from clients, providing specialized reports about the offenders, conducting risk assessments, integrating behavior and attitude change programs to protect citizens, liaising with victims of serious crimes, managing approved premises, and ensuring that community order is enforced through the courts (Petersilia, 2001). The officers work with the following members:

  1. Mental health staff-The staff of the mental health workers consists of employees who can work and support the services of a parole officer.
  2. Elders and teachers-teachers are people who have entitled the duty to instill knowledge and learning in the minds of the parolees to enable them to reintegrate into the community.
  3. Correctional officers-Correctional workers have the responsibility to ensure that the parolees acquire the right skills to integrate and fit into the community, even if their problems are criminal.
  4. Primary workers-primary workers provide support services to ensure the successful integration of the parolees into the community.
  5. Social workers-Social workers provide the support services of reintegration of the parolees into the community.


The parole office is constituted in a manner, which allows the parole officer to communicate with other state officials in different parole divisions. The divisions are classified into different states, which are managed by different officers responsible for legal, investigative, and functional support within the jurisdiction of the departments. The parole officer reports to the departmental heads and is referred to as the field officer. A typical example is the state of California division, which is comprised of Evidence-Based Practices Programs, which include the Ignition Interlock Device Program; Interstate Compact Services; Field Programs; and Special Operations (Schwartz, 2010).

The supervisory roles of the officer include:

  1. Evaluating the risk exposure to the offender when providing the required specialized support and resources to parolees to help them reform and fit into society.
  2. Providing professional support to offenders to enable them to comply with the community requirements through capacity building.
  3. To put in place interventional strategies, which enable the offenders to make positive judgments and positively change their lives.
  4. To ensure that the conditions of supervision are enforced based on the issuance of citations when the offenders violate certain laws.

Analysis of ethical dilemma

The parole officer has professionally entitled the right to disclose certain information as they regard potentially helpful in protecting and restoring the client’s health. On the other hand, ethics requires the officer to weigh between right and wrong or good and evil. The dilemma is to disclose or not to disclose confidential information. Kant’s’ categorical imperatives claim that one should act in a manner that the act becomes a universal law, which results in a greater good or less pain for the others and that provides the basis for the parole officer to make decisions of information confidentiality and disclosure (Bartels & Pizarro, 2011).

​Ethical concerns

The ethical concerns when working as a parole officer include confidentiality and privacy of the client information, defamation of character, conflict of interest, boundary interests, fraud, parolee referrals, supervision, service delivery, and practitioner impairment.

Social contexts of moral values, professional ethics, business or practice standards

The moral values are about the good that is expected as an outcome of paroling clients in the community who need the services. According to the context in, which the moral values are applied, when the parolee joins the community with different moral values, the professional parole officer has to take into account the moral values of the client and the community to make decisions on how to integrate the person back to the community (Post, Puchalski & Larson, 2000).

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​Theories and techniques related to ethics and leadership

The ethical theories include the deontological theory, which focuses on intentions regardless of the outcomes, which from the teleological perspective as the parole officer discloses confidential information about the patient, it does not matter as long as the outcome is regarded as good. Transformational leadership has strong values, which engage people to revalue their decision such as the decision made by the parole officer to disclose the information about the HIV client. Here, the core elements of the leader include core values, what leaders do in the leadership process, discipline, knowledge, and relationships.

​Level of congruence of professional ethics

The level of congruence of leadership is based on the contributions ethics makes to professionalism, which results in professional ethics. Ethics provides the basis for the parole officer to decide along what is regarded as the ultimate good and a profession provides the framework of making decisions about a problem, which raises moral issues, which is described as prescriptive professional ethics (Seiter, 2002).

​Impact of multicultural diversity

Multicultural diversity implies people with different cultures, which include values, art, beliefs, habits, and customs of groups of people (Seiter, 2002). The groups can be cultural, religious, ethnic, and beliefs. The cultural diversities influence the perceptions, communication styles, the way of people, the values, beliefs, and attitude of clients towards the community, and the parole officer.

​Social and cultural issues

The individuals on parole in the above case include people with substance abuse; HIV cases, people with different criminal records, and young people under the parole programs.


The officer is not entitled to disclose medical history to a third party other than those to whom the information can be disclosed. Confidentiality issues include:

  1. The contract of duty
  2. Ethics of duty
  3. Statutory requirements
  4. Enforceability
  5. Scope and limitation
  6. Consequences of breaching the requirements
  7. The ethical duties of the parole officer
  8. Limits of their duty
  9. Exceptions to duty
  10. Statutory requirements
  11. Ethical dilemma on whether the parole should disclose information

​Decisions making

Decision-making is influenced by the legal environment consists of the statutory requirements that have to be met to ensure that professional codes of conduct are adhered to according to certain sections of the law and other penal codes (Gregory, 2010). In practice, for instance, the laws, which are under chapter 508 of the Texas Government Code guide how to deal with paroles who belong to the states and those who do not belong to the united states. For example, Kant’s theory requires that a person’s actions should be such that they act to achieve the greatest good of others and minimize pain on the others (Seiter, 2002).

​Decision-making process elements

To resolve the ethical issues, the following elements of the decision-making process are crucial. Those elements include:

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  1. Objectivity
  2. Professional behavior
  3. Confidentiality
  4. Professional competence
  5. Legal requirements on information disclosure
  6. Disclosures might be required by the following instruments of the law and include:
  7. Disclosure by statute

Those disclosures include notifications, which are provided by law and various other statutory requirements.

The disclosure can only be sanctioned by a judge or an authorized person and the information to disclose must be under the information disclosure act.

Evaluation of working environment because of legal, ethical, and work practices

​Legal requirements on information disclosure

Here, the legal requirements deal with the provision of services, which entails the officers to investigate the cases of parolees who qualify to be released into the community. Also, the officers are bound by the law to examine and determine the offenders under the conviction and adjudication to ensure a smooth transition into society.

Analysis of Work Environment

​Work environment

The work environment consists of people from different cultural and professional backgrounds who use information systems to communicate and share information across computer networks. The people are of different age groups and educational backgrounds, moral and immoral behavior with ethical and moral behaviors across cultures (Brown & Mitchell, 2010). The issue underlying the work environment include information sharing, information disclosure, illicit use of resources, misuse of cooperating resources, and ethical decisions and evaluations.

​Population under the profession

The population under the information systems professional includes healthcare professionals who are a combination of people from different cultural environments, ethical environments, employees in the healthcare profession, and other ordinary information system users.

​Code of professional ethics and ethical code requirements

The code of professional ethics of the health care professionals includes the obligations to protect the confidentiality of patient data, which is based on the obligations to the employer, fellow medical practitioners, obligations to society, and personal responsibility to ensure one practice accordingly (Brown & Mitchell, 2010). The healthcare professional is entitled to behave and handle patient information in a manner that puts the patient ethics first, handles patients with dignity, use understandable language, refrain from intimidating behavior, and ensure that patients are addressed by diagnosis and not on religious inclinations. The codes of ethics include paragraph 4 of Section 257 of the Criminal Code of Malta Cap. 9 and Section D, which entails patient information confidentiality, the Health Care Professions Act, 2003 (Cap. 464) of Part V, Article 27 (1) (b), and Health Care Professions Act, 2003 (Cap. 464) of Part V, Article 25 (1), which consists of statutory obligations to keep private patient information undisclosed except as required by certain statutory obligations (Brown & Mitchell, 2010).

​The code of imperatives and personal ethical responsibilities

Honesty should be part of the professional code of conduct of the healthcare giver with the customer. Honesty is about truthfulness, effective verbal communication, and accuracy of records, which are executed by following the laid down rule and regulations of collecting and documenting data.

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​Customer rights

The medical practitioner is obligated to protect the patient from any harm that may result from the use of or application of drugs and any other forms of treatment. Here, “the patient has a right to access their medical records under the HIPAA Privacy Rule of sections 42 U.S.C. 299b–22(g) (3)” (Brown & Mitchell, 2010).


Patient Safety Confidentiality is enshrined under the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005 (PSQIA), which provides reports on patient safety under section 42 C.F.R. of Part 3 of the rules on patient safety. On the other hand, someone entitled to the healthcare power of the attorney and the HIPAA privacy rules is entitled to access to a patient’s health information depending on the circumstances surrounding the need to access the information. Confidentiality entails not revealing the patient information publicly, staff can only remove patient records within the scope of their work, unauthorized persons are not allowed to access information of the patient (Seiter, 2002).

​Dual relationships

The relationship between the patient and the customer shall be kept appropriately to ensure that the relationship between the two parties is not compromised. Besides, the activities between the two parties should not raise any objections by ensuring that the practices are based on established standards. If the relationship between the two parties is compromised, the patient should be transferred to another caregiver (Bartels & Pizarro, 2011). To ensure the relationship is on a professional level, the caregiver should be properly aware of the ethical and professional code of conduct using the ethics manual. Other issues related to dual relationships include disruption of therapeutic relationships and the damage that could result in damaging the relationship between the patient and the medical practitioner.

​Fee for services

The fee of service should be charged by the established standards and codes of practice for healthcare givers.

​Use of distance technology

The use of distance technology, which enables the healthcare giver to communicate with the customers, should guarantee confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information to the authorized users only.

Evaluation of the working environment and the ethical and professional code of conducts

The professional code of conduct requires the practitioner to enforce integrity, honesty, fairness, responsibility for patient care, deportment as a professional, and the ability to avoid conflict of interest.

Analysis of Ethical Dilemma

​Ethical dilemma

The ethical dilemma of a medical practitioner is to reveal patient information about a situation that can affect or lead to harm of another patient or lead to the safety of another patient (Bartels & Pizarro, 2011). Examples include a practitioner in a dilemma on whether to reveal information that a husband has started dating an HIV positive woman to the wife or to reveal information that the wife has started to use intoxicating drugs to the husband (Bartels & Pizarro, 2011). Other ethical dilemmas include ending the life of a terminally ill patient, addiction to drugs of a terminally ill patient, revealing information about terminal ill health, revealing mistakes, which harm patients, and revealing information about someone wanting to kill take one’s life (Brown & Mitchell, 2010).

​Ethical concerns

Revealing information for example about someone who wants to commit suicide can result in a lot of good to the person wanting to kill themself. However, the motive behind killing oneself is that the person is suffering from a terminal illness, which makes the person undergo a lot of crucial pains (Brown & Mitchell, 2010). Dying could make the person rest from the excruciating pain. However, the professional code of ethics and conduct does not allow a medical practitioner to allow a person to end their lives. An ethical dilemma arises, which raises ethical concerns. Here, ethics is about the values and raises the issue of right or wrong. It should be noted that consent is permissive as an ethical issue and cannot be forced (Brown & Mitchell, 2010). Here, only minimal information should be released to address the required problems and provide the necessary solutions.

​Document for the ethics committee

The document should consist of an application letter that provides details of the supervisory roles and strategies, the frequency of supervision of the patient, the time taken to supervise the patient, and the boundary that has to be maintained between the patient and the medical practitioner (Brown & Mitchell, 2010). The documentation could enable the committee to be able to assess the level of supervision of the patient, ensure accountability of the practices of the medical personnel, and ensure that the services provided are continuous, and to be able to evaluate the services being offered.

​Social contexts of moral values, professional ethics, business or practice standards

The theories of leadership include the servant leadership style, the traits leadership theory, the command and controls leadership style, transactional leadership style, situational leadership, visionary, and relational leadership style. All the leadership style is appropriate for the healthcare environment depending on the ultimate goals to achieve.

​Level of congruence of professional ethics

The level of congruence of professional ethics include justice, personal values, competence at the workplace, good personal relationships between the patient and the healthcare provider, effective approach to dealing with personal values, and

​Impact of multicultural diversity

Multicultural diversity creates a situation where different values, beliefs, political systems, economic systems, and communities hold beliefs about different issues. The situation creates an environment where certain cultures are strong while others are weak and the perceptions held about certain issues such as confidentiality differs from one culture to the other. Different cultures hold different perceptions about punishment and beliefs, which affect the professional roles of people working in such communities (Brown & Mitchell, 2010).

​Role and functions of ethical standards

​Ethical standards provide the framework for resolving issues of competent-ethical services and the ethical expectations for professionals working in their environments, which present different ethical issues to be resolved. Ethical standards provide the framework for clarifying the roles of the practitioner in their profession, establish ways of solving problems arising with ethical concerns and provide a framework for standards of behavior in the profession. The ethical standards provide ground for decision making based on analytical reasoning and moral behavior.


Brown, M. E., & Mitchell, M. S. (2010). Ethical and unethical leadership. Business Ethics Quarterly, 20(4), 583-616.

Bartels, D. M., & Pizarro, D. A. (2011). The mismeasure of morals: Antisocial personality traits predict utilitarian responses to moral dilemmas. Cognition, 121(1), 154-161.

Fraser, A., Gatherer, A., & Bloom, S. (2010). Ethics and values in prison practice. Public health124(11), 643-645.

Gregory, M. (2010). Reflection and resistance: Probation practice and the ethic of care. British Journal of Social Work, 40(7), 2274-2290.

Petersilia, J. (2001). Prisoner reentry: Public safety and reintegration challenges. The Prison Journal, 81(3), 360-375.

Post, S. G., Puchalski, C. M., & Larson, D. B. (2000). Physicians and patient spirituality: professional boundaries, competency, and ethics. Annals of internal medicine, 132(7), 578-583.

Schwartz, J. (2010). Do hypothetical imperatives require categorical imperatives?. European Journal of Philosophy, 18(1), 84-107.

Seiter, R. P. (2002). Prisoner reentry and the role of parole officers. Fed. Probation, 66 (2),50.

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