Code of Ethics

Ethical Principles

1. Professional Competency


Members must ensure that clinical services are only delivered by professionals with appropriate qualifications and experience. Whilst a time period of such experience is not prescribed by the Code, it is recommended that all EAP counsellors have a minimum of two (2) years supervised experience in the EAP field or a closely related field. It is also required that all EAP counsellors are Psychologists, Social Workers or Other Approved Professional Workers. In addition all EAP counsellors must undergo continuous clinical supervision and ongoing relevant professional development.


Members who manage EAP contracts will have an appropriate level of knowledge and experience in the area of human resources, management, business or other relevant area.


Members who provide other services associated with Employee Assistance Programs such as contract management, manager and supervisor support will have an appropriate level of knowledge and experience in the relevant area.


Where a member becomes aware that another member’s professional functioning may be impaired through the use of alcohol, drugs, mental illness or other reason, he or she will encourage treatment and support.

2. Confidentiality and Privacy


EAPAA members will ensure that all client information, including that the issue of attendance at counselling, is treated as confidential.

The exceptions to this are:

  • Consent by the client;
  • Risk to safety of the client or others;
  • Statutory obligations (for example mandatory reporting);
  • Court order or subpoena

The provisions of:

  • the Privacy Act 1988 Cth (as amended) and the National Privacy Principles (‘NPP’s) and
  • the Privacy Act 1993 NZ (as amended) and the Privacy Principles, will be adhered to in relation to all client information. All client information will be stored, transmitted and transported in a secure manner. The use of client information for research purposes will be conducted in accordance with appropriate ethical standards and guidelines.

EAPAA members will respect confidential contract and business matters which relate to client organisations and will not disclose such information without the client organisation’s prior consent.


Appropriate confidentiality will be maintained in accordance with accepted practice within the particular service area.

3. Equal Opportunity and Human Rights

EAPAA members will comply with all Equal Opportunity and Human Rights law in relation to the employment and management of staff, and the provision of services to clients.

4. Full Disclosure

EAPAA members will make full disclosure regarding the business structure, ownership and affiliations of their organisation.

5. Conduct of Research

EAPAA members engaged in research will ensure the following:

  • The ethical protocols and conventions associated with the research will be observed, including obtaining approval from the appropriate ethical body;
  • That appropriately qualified practitioners conduct the research;
  • The interests of the research project or its participants are not placed ahead of individual clients and client organisations;
  • All reasonable steps are taken to protect the confidentiality and privacy of research participants;
  • Obtain informed consent from all participants, and ensure that participation is voluntary.
  • Store research data and other material with appropriate security.

6. EAP Service Provision

EAPAA members will offer services to individual clients only within their area of specific competency. The limits of expertise regarding clinical services will be recognised, and consultation and supervision will be sought when clinically indicated.

7. Referral

All referral options provided to individual clients will have regard to the best interests of the client. EAPAA members will ensure that they maintain an up to date list of relevant referral sources.

8. Development and Education

EAPAA members recognise that EAP services are provided by way of a partnership between EAP service providers and client organisations. EAPAA members will take reasonable steps to support and foster the development of staff and trainees within the EAP field.

9. Public Statements

Members will not subject other members of the EAP community, whether they are EAPAA members or not, to adverse public comment. Members will not make public statements on behalf of the EAPAA without the express permission of the President of the EAPAA.

10. Advertising

EAPAA members will also ensure that their advertising and marketing practices are not misleading and deceptive, and comply with all relevant trade practices legislation. EAPAA members will present their professional qualifications in an accurate and truthful manner.
Employee Assistance Professionals Association of Australasia (Inc)

Review of Members’ Conduct

1. Procedure regarding complaint

A complaint against a member may be made by any person. Such a complaint must be in writing and submitted by the complainant to the President of EAPAA or the Chairperson of the Ethics Committee, who will then refer the matter to the Ethics Committee. If the Ethics Committee determines the complaint is not lacking in substance, a letter will be forwarded to the respondent outlining the nature of the complaint and those parts of the Code which may have been breached.

The respondent will be required to respond in writing to the complaint within a period of thirty (30) days from the date of receipt of the letter outlining the complaint. The Ethics Committee may then determine the complaint, seek further information in writing from either party or any other source, or proceed to a closed hearing in relation to the matter. Should either party fail to respond to a request from the Ethics Committee at any stage following a reasonable period of notice, the Ethics Committee may proceed in their absence.

The hearing referred to may be conducted in person or by telephone conference. Both complainant and respondent are entitled to be present for the duration of the hearing, and may present oral or written evidence. The complainant and / or respondent may be epresented at the hearing by any member of EAPAA who is in good standing. The Ethics Committee will adhere to the principles of natural justice and procedural fairness at all times. Following the conclusion of the hearing the Ethics Committee will determine the complaint and will provide a confidential report of its findings to the Committee. This determination will occur not less than thirty (30) days following the conclusion of the hearing.

2. Drawing matters to the attention of the Committee

All EAPAA members must inform the EAPAA Executive of any complaint made to their relevant professional body or any instance of being denied professional membership or deregistration, or any conditions or restrictions on practice by their professional body.

3. Procedure regarding breach

A breach of this Code gives rise to the procedure referred to in Clause 10 of the Constitution of the EAPAA.