LOVE—A tool for making ethical decisions


  • Jeremy Le Comte Private Practice, Supervision and Development, Aotearoa New Zealand


Ethics, Dilemma, Supervision, Decision Framework, Model


Social workers regularly engage in astoundingly complex ethical dilemmas. Castro-Atwater and Hohnbaum (2015) even advocated that understanding a professional body’s code of ethics is just a necessary first step and is not enough, by itself, to equip practitioners to make ethical decisions. The key outcome of this practice note is to share a practical supervision tool, LOVE, that arose from working (as a supervisor, trainer, and professional body ethics panel member) alongside practitioners to respond to ethical dilemmas and complaints. The LOVE tool will help safeguard social workers while they navigate ethical dilemmas by assisting them to systematically consider different lenses (legal requirements, organisational requirements, values, and ethical codes) which will help mitigate the risk of them overlooking something of significance.


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How to Cite

Le Comte, J. (2024). LOVE—A tool for making ethical decisions. Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work, 36(1), 156–162. Retrieved from



Practice Notes