EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

No: S-20.5

Date: April 24, 1989
(Revised October21, 1996)

Authority: Wisconsin Governor Thompson's
                  Executive Order #94 (1990) and
                  UWM Administration


  1. The University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee is committed to offering assistance to faculty, academic staff, and represented and non-represented classified employees (and their families) who are, for whatever reason, experiencing a problem which is affecting their work performance. This problem can relate to alcohol and other drug abuse, stress, financial difficulties, the needs of elderly parents and a host of other concerns.

    The Employee Assistance Program functions in the belief that most human illnesses and problems can be treated or addressed and that faculty and staff whose work performance has been deteriorating because of the illness or other concerns can be restored to full productivity.

    Whenever possible, the Employee Assistance Program attempts to assist faculty and staff members at the earliest possible time, before their problems impair work performance.

  2. The faculty/staff member is responsible for seeking and accepting treatment for behavioral-medical problems. The program, however, is voluntary and the faculty/staff member may decide not to participate.

  3. The faculty/staff member's contact and involvement with Employee Assistance Program staff will be kept confidential in accordance with applicable federal and state statutes, regulations and case law. All information relating to contacts with program staff and referrals to outside agencies will be kept separate from the faculty and staff members' personnel and department files.

  4. The program provides for self, family, supervisory and union referrals to program staff. The supervisory referrals usually result from unsatisfactory job performance. The program staff advise supervisors and department chairs concerning how to make such referrals. (Supervisors, however, are encouraged to communicate the availability of the EAP to all employees in order to reduce the likelihood of declining or unsatisfactory job performance.)

    Specially trained faculty and staff volunteer "employee assistance coordinators" attempt to identify problems, and refer individuals to resources outside the university which are utilized to diagnose and treat physical, emotional and other personal problems.

    The program staff will try to ensure that faculty and staff benefit from the best combination of services whenever possible.

    The program provides free referral services. Behavioral and medical problems are covered within the scope of the faculty/staff member's health insurance coverage and other benefit policies. Program staff attempt to ensure that the cost of services that are not covered is within the individual's financial means.

  5. The Employee Assistance Program recognizes that alcoholism and other drug dependencies are illnesses in which the faculty and staff member's consumption of alcohol and/or other drugs interferes with his/her job performance, attendance, conduct, health and/or safety of others.

  6. A faculty/staff member utilizing the program shall not be discriminated against in any way. The employee's job security, reputation and opportunities for promotion will not be jeopardized by participation in the program, nor will the employee be retaliated against in any way.

  7. The Employee Assistance Program's policy and related procedures are consistent with existing personnel policies and procedures and with the provisions of the labor agreement.

    Participation in the program in and of itself will not eliminate the possibility of disciplinary action if the faculty/staff member's job performance is substandard.

  8. The EAP staff urges all UW-Milwaukee personnel to support the program and this policy so that faculty and staff experiencing behavioral, medical and other problems can be offered prompt and positive assistance.