See More

How to make an ethics complaint

Members of the community can use our Ethics Complaints Management process to make allegations of serious ethical professional misconduct by AASW members.

The AASW's Ethics Complaints Management process:

  • Protects the public (users of social work services) from harm by determining the minimum acceptable ethical practice standards of social workers (AASW members)
  • Addresses allegations of serious ethical professional misconduct, with possible consequences of AASW membership ineligibility
  • Educates and supports member social workers to ensure that their practice meets, and where possible exceeds, the minimum standard.

Making a complaint

Please contact us on

Explain in brief if you think a person may have acted unethically.

We can also provide you with information about other options for addressing your concerns.

How do I know if my concerns are matters of serious ethical misconduct?

The AASW recognises that complaints are generally made in good faith. All complaints are taken seriously and given careful and respectful consideration, but the AASW can only respond to complaints which relate to allegations of serious ethical professional misconduct.

Before making a complaint, please read the Information for complainants regarding serious ethical misconduct and complete the Checklist for complainants.

These documents are designed to:

  • explain the purpose of the AASW Ethics Complaints Management Process (ECMP);
  • provide information and guidance about serious ethical misconduct;
  • assist you with the process of making a complaint;
  • ensure that the AASW Ethics Complaints Management Process (ECMP) is the right process to address your particular concerns;
  • ensure that you have all the required information about the ECMP prior to proceeding.

What if the complaint relates to a Family Court matter?

The AASW is prohibited by law from receiving and responding to complaints that relate to proceedings of the Family Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court of Australia. Please read our Information Sheet for more information, and options for resolving your concerns.

Who can I contact to discuss a potential complaint?

The AASW can provide information and guidance about the Ethics Complaints Management Process.

The Ethics Complaints team can be contacted at or telephone 03 9320 1044.

Before making a complaint

Please read the following documents:

You may submit your ethics complaint to AASW either by email to or by post to PO Box 2008, Royal Melbourne Hospital, VIC, 3050.

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers