Ethical Challenges of the Occupational Safety Technician
Authors: Vanessa Coutinho, José Carlos Sebastião, Rogério Filipe, Miguel Corticeiro Neves
Abstract: Professional ethics is an emerging phenomenon, arising from the constant changes in society and from the consequent challenges imposed to the occupational safety technicians. The purpose of this investigation is to trace an overview of the knowledge of ethical principles applied to the professional practice of the Portuguese technicians, in order to establish the basic principles that should figure in an ethical code of conduct. The method applied addressed both the technicians, by applying a survey and several prominent individuals, by conducting interviews to retrieve relevant data regarding the evolution of the professional practice in Portugal. The results indicate several aspects of the professional conduct that need to be addressed in an ethical guideline. The Portuguese professionals seem to act substantially driven by technical principles, lacking more profound reflection oriented by ethical standards. The development of a Portuguese Ethical Code of Conduct for Occupational Safety Technicians based on the results gathered could reflect the idiosyncrasies of practice in the country, as well as address the most sensitive aspects reported by the professionals. Such code should stand as a high priority issue of both professional and scientific community, promoting the quality of practice and elevating the profession to its highest level.
Keywords: Professional Ethics, Guidelines, Principles, Dilemmas.
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