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Code of Ethics

Every coach or counsellor awarded a diploma at the Academie voor Coaching en Counselling endorses and adheres to the Code of Ethics, as stated below, and commits himself to the following principles in practising their profession as a coach.

For the sake of readability, we use the term ‘coach’ here. In the text below, you can also see the term ‘counsellor’ where ‘coach’ is mentioned. 

ACC Code of Ethics and Conduct

The Academie voor Coaching en Counselling (ACC) strives for a world in which people use their talents to bring out the best in themselves and others. ACC coaches guide clients through a process aimed at getting the best out of themselves and life. This ethical code promotes the well-being and safety of these clients.

Within its own activities the ACC endorses, in addition to this Code of Ethics, the NRTO Code of Conduct.

Respect

A coach treats everyone with respect and integrity based on the principle of equality. This means that a coach is impartial, does not discriminate and does not exclude anyone on the grounds of gender, race, orientation or other. The coach is the instrument through which people can find themselves and their path in life. They guide people, keeping in mind that every person follows their own path and knows what is good for themselves. By promoting awareness, the coach helps contribute to a liveable world for people, animals and the environment.

Integrity and confidentiality

Two of the most important values for a coach are integrity and confidentiality. Clients must be able to have faith that a coach will comply with the agreements made and follow through with what they say they will do. 

Furthermore, information shared with a coach is treated with the utmost care and confidentiality. The coach knows the rules that apply to conducting independent practice and adheres to these rules. Information and data concerning a client are only shared with third parties after written permission from the client has been given. Only anonymised information is shared during intervision or supervision. In cases where Dutch law stipulates that information about the client must be shared, the coach will always discuss this with the client beforehand or, in the event that the client has died, with their relatives.

The coach provides a suitable and safe space for guidance to take place in. If coaching takes place outdoors or while travelling, information about insurance requirements will be given in advance.

The coach informs the client of the terms and conditions of coaching in advance. These conditions continue to apply even after the coaching process has come to an end. The coach complies with Dutch law and with general norms regarding culture and decency. If applicable, he also informs the client of the relevant laws and regulations.

Equality versus dependence

Coaching and counselling take place on the basis of equality. Nevertheless, dependence and vulnerability on the client’s part arise in the coach-client relationship. A coach is aware of this and will in no way break the client’s trust.

Boundaries

A coach refrains from coaching people with whom conflicts of interest due to personal relationships may arise. This also applies to people in the coach’s personal network. It is not permitted to enter into a personal relationship with the client during the coaching process. It is forbidden to engage in any intimate activity or sexual contact with a client both during the coaching process and for up to 6 months after it has ended. For child or youth coaches, this also applies to the child’s parents/guardians.

Competence

The coach is aware of their own competence and does everything they can to continue to develop in the profession. The coach is aware of the limits of their competence and refers clients to other care providers if their needs exceed the limits of the coach’s competence. In this way, the client is always guaranteed appropriate care.

Interpersonal relations students/coaches

Students/coaches treat each other and their individual opinions and identities with respect. If a student/coach has reason to believe that another student/coach is acting unethically in their contact with a client, he or she will broach the subject with the student/coach in question. If this does not produce the desired result, it can be reported to a teacher at the Academie voor Coaching en Counselling, who will discuss the issue with the student/coach in question.

Validity

The ethical code entered into force on January 1, 2019. Suggestions for changes can be submitted to the management of the Academie voor Coaching en Counselling by sending an email to legal@counselling.nl. After a change is made, it will be published on the ACC website and in the ACC newsletter.

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