Staff Personnel Manual (SPP)

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Effective: 10/15/1985

Revised:7/1/2013

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SPP 604: Employee Assistance

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Purpose

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To provide services through the Employee Assistance Office to help individuals with personal and work-related problems that may result in deteriorating job performance and/or emotional, social (including familial), physical and/or behavioral problems. To provide systemic assessments and recommendations to departments or units if deemed appropriate by the Employee Assistance professional

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Sources

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42 Code of Federal Regulations §§ 2.31 to 2.33 (1986)
Arizona Revised Statutes §§ 12–2282, –2283; 13–3620; 32–2085
University policy

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Applicability

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Benefits-eligible faculty, academic professionals, and regular classified employees, university staff, and non-faculty administrators and their spouses, dependents, and household members

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Policy

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Employees

An employee’s job performance may be affected by emotional, social, physical, and/or behavioral health problems. Conversely, an employee’s emotional, social, physical, and/or behavioral health may be affected by work-related problems. The university offers help to employees with such problems through the Employee Assistance Office (EAO). Services available from the EAO at no cost to the employee include:

  1. assessment and evaluation
  2. information and referral
  3. short-term counseling (one to five sessions)
  4. consultation and education
  5. crisis intervention

    and

  6. psychiatric consultation.

If professional judgment suggests it, in a particular case, the Employee Assistance (EA) professional may extend the number of counseling sessions.

To assist employees with resolving their problems, the EAO provides referral services to appropriate professional resources in the community. The employee is responsible for costs incurred from an external provider or other resource. However, the EA professional and employee will discuss the employee’s options to cover third party costs. The employee’s health insurance coverage will be considered before any referral is provided.

Employees may seek services directly from the EAO. Supervisors may encourage, but not require, employees to seek assistance. In cases where an employee has violated the university drug and alcohol policy, sanctions may require that the employee participate in a drug rehabilitation program. If so, the employee may be required to seek assistance from the EAO to identify available drug rehabilitation programs and/or to obtain an EAO referral to a drug rehabilitation program.

Supervisors may seek advice and counsel from the EAO regarding employees with personal problems, work-related problems, and/or unit dysfunction. If a supervisor directly makes a referral, he or she will be informed if and when the employee has attended the appointment.

The first appointment with the EAO professional and the first appointment with the EAO psychiatrist may be made during working hours without charging time to accrued sick or vacation leave. All additional visits must be charged to accrued sick leave (if appropriate), vacation leave, or leave without pay.

Use of the EAO services shall not exempt the employee from university policies and procedures. However, the supervisor, in consultation with the associate vice president of the Office of Human Resources or OHR designee, may determine on an individual basis if special exceptions shall be made.


Spouses and Dependents

Spouses, dependents, and household members are eligible for crisis services, assessment, and referral information.


Confidentiality

EA records will be maintained by the EAO and kept separately from the employee’s personnel records.

All information in EAO records and all communication between EAO professionals, mental health counselors, psychiatrists, psychologists, or interns and clients participating with the EAO are confidential. No communication, information, or record involving a client (employee, spouse, or dependent) who is participating with the EAO shall be disclosed to anyone unless the client has provided a signed and dated written release to the EAO allowing release of the records or information requested.

EAO records and information will not be disclosed or provided without signed consent from the client on file with the EAO. If the EAO receives a court order or subpoena requiring disclosure, the ASU Office of General Counsel must review the order before compliance.

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Exception

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The EAO and/or ASU have a legal obligation to report child abuse, vulnerable adult abuse, and certain life-and-death emergencies without a client release.

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Cross-References

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For information on Americans with disabilities, see the Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Manual, ACD 405, “Individuals with Disabilities.”

For information on a drug-free workplace, see:

  1. SPP 315, “Drug-Free Workplace Requirements”

    and

  2. SPP 317, “Drug-Free Campus Environment.”

For information on conduct and work rules in the workplace, see SPP 801, “Employee Conduct and Work Rules.”

For information on job performance, see:

  1. SPP 808, “Performance Management for University Staff”

    and

  2. SPP 809, “Discipline.”

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