Wheeling Jesuit University


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Phone: 1-304-243-8152

Benefits: Employee Assistance Program

SECTION: HR - Benefits NEXT REVIEW DATE: June 2017
APPROVED: July 2011 REVIEWER: Director of Human Resources
APPROVED BY: William C. Rickle, S.J. REVISION DATE: June 2016

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Wheeling Jesuit University is interested in the health and well-being of employees and is also concerned about the potential impact non work-related problems may have on an employee's job performance. The University recognizes that its employees do not work in isolation from concerns about their personal lives and therefore offers assistance to household members as well. To support an employee's ability to maximize performance, the University has arranged for the services of an Employee Assistance Program (EAP).


2.1 Policy Statement
The University establishes guidelines for the administration and utilization of the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). The EAP provides professional and confidential support, consultation, short-term counseling and/or referral to resources for full time employees and their families who have personal problems including: stress and everyday life issues such as finances, a death in the family, or addictions; family / relationship issues; work / career issues; healthy lifestyle changes; managing anxiety, depression, and drug & alcohol issues (addiction or recovery from addiction). In addition, the EAP provides 24-hour crisis consultation by telephone with a counselor. THe EAP staff also provides consultation to supervisors, along with training and education to departments. All EAP services are free to University employees and their families.

2.2 The Employee Assistance Program

2.2.1 Provides professional, confidential, support, consultation, counseling and referral services to full time employees and family household members. This is accomplished through assessment and the formulation of a plan to guide the employee or family member toward the proper level of care and a successful outcome. This includes:

  • Providing brief counseling, consultation and motivation for the employee or family to take steps to resolve the personal problems as early as possible.
  • Referring the employee, when needed, to appropriate outside resources for further assistance, including health plan networks, community or public providers.
  • Availability 24/7 by telephone for crisis consultation or mandatory referral.

2.2.2 Provides direct support, guidance and consultation to supervisors when they are confronted with difficult employee situations, patterns of poor performance and/or unusual behavior of any employee.

2.2.3 Provides performance management support through consultation and training.

2.3 Employee Assistance Services Employees may obtain assistance through the EAP in one of the three (3) following ways:

2.3.1 Self-Referral: Employees are encouraged to seek assistance on their own initiative before personal problems begin to affect their work. Early resolution of personal problems is in the best interest of the individual and the University. Key elements include:

  • Only EAP staff has access to confidential EAP records.
  • Confidentiality is guaranteed within the limits of the law.
  • Information is not divulged without the written consent of the employee.
  • Utilizing the EAP does not jeopardize an employee's job or promotional opportunities.

2.3.2 Supervisory Recommendation (Non-performance Based): This is used with an employee evidencing personal difficulties when performance has not yet been affected. Key elements include:

  • A caring gesture for a staff member who comes to the supervisor confidentially.
  • The supervisor sees signs of a personal problem and provides an EAP brochure, card or phone number.
  • The supervisor recommendation is voluntary on part of the employee.
  • Service is confidential – the supervisor will hear nothing from the EAP.

2.3.3 Performance-Based Supervisor Referral: Supervisors are responsible for managing performance and correcting deteriorating or unsatisfactory job performance. The supervisor will consult with Human Resources (HR) as per University policy regarding corrective action. The EAP is available to support effective performance management and to assist the employee in meeting performance requirements by dealing with issues impacting performance. Performance based referrals to the EAP fall into two categories:

  • Formal Referral (Voluntary Use): Driven by a pattern of performance decline that has not improved using traditional methods. EAP use is voluntary on the part of the employee and the goal is to improve job performance by offering the EAP as a resource. The Formal Referral is triggered by a manager's call through HR to the EAP. The EAP counselor will guide the manager through the process which involves (a) getting job performance information and other relevant data and (b) establishing a time frame within which the employee is expected to call for an appointment. The EAP will notify the manager through HR if the employee does not make an appointment. All other information is confidential. With a signed release of information, the EAP will share the following with the manager: attendance at EAP appointments, agreement to follow the recommended plan or a decision not to participate in EAP services. Whether or not the employee chooses to use the EAP or to cooperate with a plan of action, the manager continues to monitor performance and to base further corrective action on job performance.
  • Mandatory Referral: Used with a serious incident or a major misconduct affecting safety, job performance, or policy violation; a mandatory referral can also be used as part of the Drug and Alcohol policy of the University. Key elements include: The manager contacts the HR Department to discuss his/her observations. If HR determines there is merit, HR will arrange a conversation between the manager, HR, and the EAP to begin the process. In this call, the manager will provide all information concerning the incident triggering the referral, the status of the employee, next steps as identified by HR, and the time frame within which the employee is expected to call the EAP for the appointment. This referral requires the employee to contact the EAP and follow recommendations. Failure to contact the EAP will carry with it consequences established by the manager and HR. The EAP will notify the manger if the employee does not set up or keep the appointment; all other information is confidential. With a signed release of information, the EAP will share the following with HR: attendance at EAP appointments, agreement to follow the recommended plan, and if the recommended plan of action requires scheduling accommodations/time off. The manager will continue to monitor job performance or when the employee returns to the job if the employee is off work due to the incident triggering the Mandatory Referral. Mandatory referrals can be made a condition of continued employment.

The Director of Human Resources has the authority to change, modify or approve exceptions to this policy at any time with or without notice and with the approval of the University President or designee.


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