The Employee Assistance Program is a confidential resource developed to help employees and their families deal with issues that affect their lives at work or at home. Any employee or family member, co-worker, or supervisor is entitled to EAP services. If you make a referral for someone else, it's confidential. Technically, EAP services are supposed to be confidential, but that's not always the case.
According to Workplace Solutions, many employees are hesitant to contact EAP for privacy reasons. While most EAPs are located off-site, some EAPs are in the company. So, if you're an employee who comes into the EAP office for a voluntary counseling session, and you don't want your colleagues to know, but a co-worker sees you enter the office, there's not much you can do to maintain your privacy or avoid gossip. Even though EAP services are confidential, employees are concerned that information could somehow be leaked to management.
In fact, EAP participation rates are generally better in companies where management is considered trustworthy. All services provided at EAP are strictly confidential. EAP must comply with state and federal confidentiality regulations. Employee discipline is based solely on job performance and not on their participation in the Employee Assistance Program.
Employee assistance programs, also called EAPs, are employer-funded programs designed to provide a variety of services to employees in need. The International Association of Employee Assistance Professionals (EAPA) notes that small and medium-sized businesses are likely to have better participation rates (although they declined to provide specific data), probably because communication channels are more effective. Employers with Washington employees who offer or are considering implementing an EAP program should review the new privacy protection rules and prepare for compliance. This statement only authorizes the employee's supervisor to confirm that the employee scheduled an appointment with the EAP and whether or not they attended that appointment.
Job Security and PromotionNo employee will jeopardize their job security or promotion opportunities because of their participation or lack of participation in the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Because the employer or human resources professionals often lack information about the types and availability of EAP services, the employee may not even know about the existence of the EAP program in the workplace. We suggest that you tell your supervisor that you met with someone from the Employee Assistance Program. More than 97 percent of large U.S.
companies (more than 5,000 employees) offer employee assistance programs (EAP), for those who need a professional to talk to about personal or family issues. Voluntary participation and leave of work All employees have the right to use Human Resources Services, including the Employee Assistance Program during business hours, with the approval of their supervisor. But either way, employees should know that information disclosed to an EAP professional will only be released to their supervisor with the employee's permission. All personal information shared during the conversation between the EAP professional and the employee will remain confidential and will not be disclosed to the employee's supervisor.
In addition, due to a lack of knowledge about how the program works, some employees may avoid seeking help from the EAP because they fear being stigmatized, demoted, or even fired in some way for demonstrating that they need help, or, as mentioned above, they may fear a breach of confidentiality. .