A rigorous consultation process informed the writing of the 2016 Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions. We discussed and formed new developments through webinars and circulated drafts to all members.

The final version was shaped through a systematic analysis of more than 10,000 itemised responses from members. We also consulted with our divisions, employers and closely related professional and regulatory bodies, including the Professional Standards Authority, and considered client expectations of professional ethics. 

Ethical Framework review 2017

During 2017 we systematically gathered questions, issues and comments from our members, employers and clients. We'd like to thank members for all their support and feedback. 

We've now completed the review and also incorporated changes in line with the new data protection requirements. The revised version of the Ethical Framework will go ‘live’ on 1 July 2018.  

You can read more about the review and download the new Ethical Framework from the link below.

Next steps

We're continuing to produce supplementary guidance in the form of Good Practice resources and ethics services, including a new ethics hub and a series of e-learning modules to help you engage with ethical decision making.

To ensure that the Ethical Framework remains live and relevant and continues to support our members, it needs to continue to reflect changes in practice and legislation as well as addressing current issues and concerns. This means that it is a living document that will continue to be revised and updated as needed.

If you'd like to provide further feedback for inclusion in the next review, please email us at


BACP Professional Standards wishes to thank the BACP members who contributed to the Ethical Framework review, and who continue to support the publication of the Good Practice in Action resources through their participation and voluntary involvement in the governance and reviewing of resources through the Ethics and Good Practice Steering Committee, Working Groups and Focus Groups. Also, our thanks extend to authors on the BACP Good Practice Author Bank, BACP colleagues within the research team who have undertaken the analysis of data, and those colleagues, across all departments, who have written, reviewed and given feedback on Good Practice in Action resources and drafts of the Ethical Framework.

It is not possible on each resource to name individuals, but it is recognised that these publications have been refined, and made fit for purpose, through the many skilled professionals who have given feedback throughout the publication process.