"Helps employees deal with work-life stressors"? Those potential mental health concerns? Yes! These are the steps in how it works in our district:
- Contact your HR person (the bookkeeper at my school, we're small). That person will get you in touch with the district's EAP.
- The EAP makes contact with the employee, finds out the concern (i.e. going through an ugly separation, really affecting energy and interest in work), the EAP connects the employee with a mental health counselor in the area.
- In our district it's limited to three visits to a mental health professional per year.
- It's totally free for employees (you, your co-workers) and it's confidential.
If you're saying, "how did I not know about this," well neither did I until just recently and I've been working in my district for 25 years. The stigma concerning mental health is around getting treatment as well as talking about the concern. That's got to change. We can start that change by sharing information about EAPs with our colleagues. We'd let them know if there were free donuts in the lounge, this is even better!