It is important that a support workers own values, belief systems and experiences do not influence the support they provide for individuals with learning disability. All individuals beliefs and choices should be respected whether you agree with them or not. For example, I do not believe in a God, however I have worked with clients that are deeply religious and I respect that. I don’t force my own opinions on others although I’m happy to discuss them if asked. I’ve also worked with clients that are racist and even though I have great difficulty understanding why people can be bigoted I do not let it affect my work (however I may formally explain to the individual that their views are discriminatory and not socially acceptable). I am addicted to cigarettes and I worked with a client who hated the smell of tobacco so I had to respect this and refrain from smoking when I was on shift with him so he didn’t become upset.
Some people with learning disability can become frustrated and stressed if they interact with people that do not their share their views about topics they feel strongly about, so in most cases, it is best not to get into a debate about it. In addition,some individuals are easily influenced by the views of others.