Employee Assistance Program
Union Public Schools recognizes that personal problems can and do interfere with an employee's ability to perform on the job. Emotional problems and mental illnesses, family or marital stress, physical ailments, abuse of alcohol or other drugs, the death of a loved one and many other problems can make work difficult.
To help employees perform at their best, Union offers an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) through Synergy Wellbeing, The EAP may be reached by telephone at 1-888-529-1156 or through their website at www.synergytulsa.com. The EAP provides confidential assessment, referral and help solving problems at no cost to employees whose personal problems interfere with job performance.
Definition of an EAP
The most widely accepted definition of an EAP was developed by the Employee Assistance Professionals Association. That definition reads:
An EAP is a worksite-based program designed to assist in the identification and resolution of productivity problems associated with employees impaired by personal concerns, including, but not limited to: health, marital, family, financial, alcohol, drug, legal, emotional stress, or other personal concerns that may adversely affect employee job performance.
The definition goes on to include the elements of an EAP, which include confidential, appropriate and timely problem-assessment services and referral and follow-up services to health care providers when appropriate.
Help For a Variety of Problems
EAP professionals are trained to assist employees with almost any issue or problem that may arise. Some of the more common concerns brought to an EAP include:
- Emotional problems
- Family or marital difficulties
- An alcohol or other drug problem
- Legal or financial difficulties
- Issues surrounding work relationships
- Difficulties managing stress
- Problems related to depression, grief or loss
Accessing the EAP
Employees can be referred to the EAP in one of three ways: by themselves (self-referral); by a friend, co-worker or family member (peer referral); or by a supervisor.
A supervisor may recommend an employee contact the EAP for assistance when productivity drops below expectations; however, following through with a supervisory referral does not exempt an employee from disciplinary action related to poor job performance. It is an employee's responsibility to meet the job performance expectations of his or her position.
It costs nothing to contact the EAP, whether by phone or in person. If an EAP staff member decides you might benefit from the services of an outside provider, such as a treatment agency that provides family counseling, the cost related to these services may be covered by your health insurance plan. The cost of services not included in your plan will be your responsibility, in which case the EAP staff person will work with you to select quality, affordable services.
The services you receive from the EAP are protected by both state and federal laws concerning confidentiality. Your request for assistance and any information that may be shared is between you and the EAP staff person. In general, information from the EAP may be released only with your written permission.
Participation in the EAP will not jeopardize your job. In fact, any assistance you receive in correcting a job performance problem may be looked upon as favorable. However, your participation in the EAP will not protect you from disciplinary action if you are referred to the program because of substandard job performance.