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Employee Assistance Program Referrals

This program is a voluntary service designed to be mutually beneficial to both the employer and the employee because it capitalizes upon the unique advantage the employment setting offers for early problem identification and intervention.

The purpose of the Employee Assistance Program is to provide an accessible and confidential setting in which employees and their families can freely discuss personal, work and family problems, and receive help in finding the best resources to meet their needs.  The major goals of this program are to provide employees with resources to resolve physical, mental health, substance abuse and other issues that may interfere with job performance and to restore valued employees to an acceptable level of productivity. Confidentiality is the cornerstone of the program.

Additionally, the EAP is available to all managerial level supervisors to discuss employees whose job performance has fallen below standards and to request assistance for employees before they become unemployable. The primary goals of this program are to promote better employee morale, to recover production time, and most importantly, retain valuable, skilled employees.

Services

  1. The district will make services of short- term counseling, assessment, and referral available through qualified professionals.
  2. Counseling services may be limited to a specified number of occurrences or hours per employee for the purpose of determining appropriate referrals.
  3. EAP counselors may refer employees to medical, mental health, or community resources for appropriate treatment or support.

Conditions

  1. Employees whose work performance is or may be adversely affected by personal problems are encouraged to use the services of the EAP. The decision to seek help and accept services is the responsibility of the employee. All counseling through the EAP is on a voluntary basis, even if recommended to the employee by a supervisor.
  2. Employees remain responsible to perform their jobs in a satisfactory manner.
  3. Supervisors and employee association representatives are encouraged to refer employees to the EAP as an additional resource to help an employee improve job performance or job related conduct. Supervisors should not attempt to diagnose an employee’s personal problems.
  4. Supervisors are not required to refer an employee to the EAP prior to or after taking disciplinary action related to an employee’s poor performance or misconduct. Corrective or disciplinary action may be taken for continued unsatisfactory performance or misconduct independent of the employee’s involvement with the EAP.
  5. No form of retaliation may be taken against an employee as a result of participation in the EAP. An employee’s job security and promotional opportunities will not be adversely affected by participation or refusal to participate in the EAP.
  6. Services provided directly by the EAP personnel are free of charge to all employees and their families. However, fees or expenses incurred as a result of a referral to a community resource are the responsibility of the employee (and his/her insurance company, when applicable).
  7. Employees are encouraged to make appointments with EAP counselors during non-working hours, whenever possible. If necessary, leave time for appointments can be requested from supervisors, who will refer to school district guidelines for authorizing annual leave or leave without pay. Sick leave may also be granted for services provided by the Employee Assistance Program as it is granted for other medical problems.

Referral Process

Any employee is eligible to use the services of the Employee Assistance Program. The following is a brief description of how to access the services through the program's referral system.

A self-referral is initiated by the employee when he or she directly contacts the program for services.

A family member referral is initiated as an extension of services available to the employee.

A supervisory referral is initiated by a supervisor seeking consultation regarding a troubled employee or seeking direct services for an employee placed on formal evaluation. This type of referral serves as an option for the employee and/or supervisor to obtain additional assistance. The supervisory referral is usually made because of a concern for the employee's:

  1. on-the-job behavior;
  2. job performance; or
  3. attendance record. It is important to remember that any employee may exhibit some problems in the areas mentioned above. 

These occurrences in isolation may not be significant, but if they persist over a period of time, they could be symptomatic of more serious problems which may ultimately affect the work situation.

Confidentiality

  1. Self or family referrals are strictly confidential. Pertinent records related to services at EAP are confidential and do not become part of personnel record. On the supervisory referral, the supervisor and other appropriate management personnel may be involved in sharing information related to the job performance issue.
  2. No information will be released without written permission from the employee with the exception of:
    1. Threats of violence to others
    2. Danger of suicide
    3. Known or suspected child abuse
    4. Disclosure of substance abuse problems by employees in positions covered by the district’s controlled substance and alcohol testing policy.
  3. Due to the confidential nature of the EAP services, disclosure by an employee to an EAP counselor of a work related injury, of discriminatory, threatening, or harassing conduct directed toward the employee, or of the need for an accommodation for a physical or mental disability, shall not constitute notice to the school district of these issues or any other issue where the school district must be notified in order to address an employee concern. Even if these issues have been raised by the employee with the EAP counselor, separate notification must be made to district officials under applicable district policies and procedural directives in order for the district to address these concerns.

NSBA/NEPN Classification: GBGC

Revised: May 1995
Revised: April 1996
Revised: May 1997
Revised: September 2005

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