Contrasted to deontology utilitarianism adopts a consequentialist viewpoint

Contrasted to deontology utilitarianism adopts a

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Contrasted to deontology, utilitarianism adopts a consequentialist viewpoint, which looks into the aftereffects of an action, rather than the action itself. Decisions, according to this perspective, need to the made after a person has understood the outcomes it could have on the community as opposed to on an individual basis. In particular, the goal of all actions ought to be the promotion of maximum good in the society and the correct action results in more good than bad – the principle of utility (Mizrahi & Davis, 2008). Bentham and Mills, two pioneering figures in the field of utilitarianism, explored two distinct aspects of utilitarianism: ideal and hedonistic utilitarianism. Bentham looked into hedonistic utilitarianism, which outlines that goodness is matched with happiness. Mills studies the notion of ideal utilitarianism, which mentions that being good entails truth, knowledge, and virtues, not just happiness (Crisp & Beddoe, 2012). The utilitarian theory encourages the promotion of utmost good for the largest
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VALUES AND ETHICS 4 number of individuals. When a person makes any a decision, it is critical that they consider its consequences. In this regard, as a social worker, it is advantageous to examine the aftereffects of any potential decision and evaluate the option that would be the least harmful or most beneficial to the service user. Since the late 1980s, the UK government has recognised the need for improving access to communal services. Notably, the government has focused on offering adequate support for individuals with long-term needs by creating programs to help them cope with their conditions and stay in the community instead of in hospitals (BASW, 2012). In a study carried out by Hepworth et al. (2016) looking into provision of day-to-day services to disabled people, the authors observed that most individuals felt helpless and hopeless owing to failure to access statutory services. Traditionally, social workers evaluated and prescribed to them the services they required. Directed by the personalisation agenda and direct payments, service users informed social worker of their problems. For the first time, social workers were forced to accept the service user’s self-assessments, which they utilised in gauging whether the mentioned issues were eligible under the Fair Access to Care (2003) regulation. The United Kingdom introduced direct payments in 1997 and social workers were mandated to translate the needs of service users into monetary value to allow them buy different services (Ruffolo, Perron, & Voshel, 2015). The goal was to give citizens more say over their lives and care. Over time, the payments morphed into personalised budgets and later into more individualised service/budget plans. However, the disabled who demanded for change and equity in service provision opposed the changes ( Brody & Nair, 2013). In line with utilitarian theory, service users express their feelings freely to ensure that social workers understood their demands and needs. This led to monumental improvements, which in a way, minimised the possibilities of conflict.
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VALUES AND ETHICS 5 A large number of users desire services that are financially inaccessible to them. While
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  • Spring '20
  • Ethics in Modern Social Work

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