All peer workforce roles are defined and underpinned by values intrinsic to the consumer rights, self-help and recovery movements spanning mental health and addiction. There are six core values necessary for the peer workforce. The values of mutuality and experiential knowledge are particularly important.
- Mutuality: The authentic two-way relationships between people through ‘the kinship of common experience’.
- Experiential knowledge: The learning, knowledge and wisdom that comes from personal lived experience of mental distress or addiction and recovery.
- Self-determination: The right for people to make free choices about their life and to be free from coercion on the basis of their mental distress or addiction.
- Participation: The right for people to participate in and lead mental health and/or addiction services including in the development or running of services as well as in their own treatment and recovery.
- Equity: The right of people who experience mental distress and/or addiction to have fair and equal opportunities to other citizens and to be free of discrimination.
- Recovery and hope: The belief that there is always hope and that resiliency and meaningful recovery is possible for everyone.