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Social Media Policy

This outlines policies related to Christina Deias Counselling’s use of social media. Please read it to understand how I conduct myself online as a mental health counsellor and how you can expect me to respond to various interactions that may occur between us online. If you have any questions about anything within this policy, I encourage you to bring them up when we meet. As new technology develops and changes, there may be times when I need to update this policy. An up-to-date version of this policy will always be available on my website. Please ask me if you require a copy.

Christina Deias Counselling as an organisation does not use social media. However, there is a blog/news page on my website, where I write blog posts relating to my practice, my approach and many other topics relating to mental health. I do not allow comments to be left on my blog. This is to minimise the risk of clients (past or present) leaving comments and thus compromising their confidentiality and our respective privacy.

Friending/following/connecting
I do not accept any friend or contact requests from current or former clients on any social networking site (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, etc). I believe that adding clients as friends or contacts on these sites can compromise your confidentiality, our respective privacy and also may blur the boundaries of our therapeutic relationship.
Clients’ social media and online presence
I will not look you up online. Viewing your online activities without your consent and without our explicit arrangement towards a specific purpose could potentially have a negative influence on our working relationship. If there are things from your online life that you wish to share with me, please bring them into our sessions where we can view and explore them together, during the counselling session.
Interacting
Please do not use messaging on social networking sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram to contact me. These sites are not secure and I do not respond to client messages via social media. Do not use wall postings, @replies, or other means of engaging with me in public online if we have an already established a client/counsellor relationship. Engaging with me in this way could compromise your confidentiality. If you need to contact me between sessions, the best way to do so is by email or phone. Direct email via christina.deias@protonmail.com is best for quick, administrative issues such as changing appointment times. See the email section below for more information regarding email interactions.
Email
I prefer using email only to arrange or modify appointments. Please do not email me content related to your counselling sessions. I use ProtonMail for email communications as this is an encrypted email service, which increases security and means breaches of confidentiality are minimised as email content is encrypted. I would encourage you to also set up a ProtonMail email address to communicate with me to ensure your email messages are protected.
Business review sites
You may find my counselling practice on sites such as Yelp or other places which list businesses. Some of these sites include forums in which users rate their providers and add reviews. Many of these sites comb search engines for business listings and automatically add listings regardless of whether the business has added itself to the site. If you should find my listing on any of these sites, please know that my listing is NOT a request for a testimonial, rating, or endorsement from you as my client. Of course, you have a right to express yourself on any site you wish. However, due to confidentiality, I cannot respond to any review on any of these sites. I urge you to take your own privacy as seriously as I take my commitment of confidentiality to you. You should also be aware that if you are using these sites to communicate indirectly with me about your feelings about our work, there is a good possibility that I may never see it. If we are working together, I hope that you will bring your feelings and reactions to our work directly into the counselling process. This can be an important part of therapy, even if you decide we are not a good fit.
Location-based services
If you use location-based services on your mobile phone, you may wish to be aware of the privacy issues related to using these services. I do not place my practice as a check-in location on sites such as Foursquare etc. However, if you have GPS tracking enabled on your device, it is possible that others may surmise that you are a counselling client due to regular check-ins at my place of work. Please be aware of this risk if you are intentionally “checking in,” from my workplace or if you have a passive LBS app enabled on your phone.
Conclusion
Thank you for taking the time to review this Social Media Policy. If you have questions or concerns about any of these policies and procedures or regarding our potential interactions online, do bring them to my attention so that we can discuss them.

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