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Basic Agreement
Letter 26: Employee`s Assistance Program

Item 26 - Employee`s Assistance Program

The parties recognize that our organization's most important assets are employees, and that human problems have the potential of being successfully addressed, provided that they are identified in their early stages and an individual effort is made to obtain assistance from an appropriate resource. Whether alcoholism, drug abuse, physical illness, mental or emotional stress, marital distress, financial problems, family conflict or other concerns, these are human problems which may have a profound impact upon the lives of employees affected, their families, and their job performance.

  1. Policy Statement

    The parties wish to foster and maintain an attitude of assistance towards problems encountered by the employees of Hamilton East, and members of their immediate families. Therefore, we support the implementation of an EAP which is designed to:

    1. Prevent or resolve personal, social, or health problems which may have a negative impact on employees lives;

    2. Enable employees to improve their quality of life; and

    3. Assist troubled employees in arranging for appropriate outside assistance.

    The parties agree to form a Joint EAP Committee. The role of this Committee is to act in an advisory capacity to the EAP services provider.

    The Employee Assistance Program will be a broad program providing assistance with a wide range of personal problems such as alcoholism, drug abuse, mental or emotional stress, marital distress, financial problems, family conflicts, problems associated with aging, depression and others. The parties believe that personal problems such as these can have a profound impact upon the lives of employees affected, their families, and their job performance. It is also recognized that these human problems are responsive to treatment and rehabilitation. Further, it is believed that success of treatment is enhanced when such problems are identified in their early stages.

    The EAP does not in any way alter the rights of the parties. The Company maintains the right to establish standards of performance and to administer and exercise established disciplinary policy distinct from the EAP. The Union maintains its right to ensure the fair and equitable treatment of its members and to protect their rights in accordance with established grievance procedure.

  2. Confidentiality

    All actions required in the administration of the EAP will be performed in a manner which will maintain client confidentiality and respect for privacy.

    Contact and involvement with the EAP is strictly confidential. No information will be released to anyone without the written consent of the participant.

    The EAP Committee shall not discuss individual cases nor shall it have access to information regarding an individual case.

    An employee who participates in the Program is responsible for maintaining the privacy and confidentiality of others of whose participation in the Program they may be aware.

    Statistical data required for the purposes of program evaluation, reports, and billing will be compiled by the agency responsible for counselling services for distribution to the members of the Joint EAP Committee in a manner that strictly guarantees the privacy and confidentiality of employees involved in the program.

  3. Referral Mechanisms

    Participation in the EAP is voluntary. However, referral mechanisms include Self, Informal/Suggested, Formal referrals.

  4. Access

    Eligible employees and their families (spouse/partner, dependent children) are eligible for counselling sessions through the Program, subject to limitation.

    Employees are expected to use their own time outside of regular working hours to attend appointments with the EAP Counsellor and/or with other professionals to whom the EAP Counsellor has referred the employee for treatment.

    In the case where treatment requires an extended absence, on the part of the employee, such absences will be dealt with according to the existing sick leave policy of the company.

  5. Job Security

    An employee's participation in the EAP shall not jeopardize job security or affect that employee's future employment or advancement at the Hamilton East facility.

  6. Eligibility

    The EAP is available to all employees, following completion of their probationary period. Eligible family members, are specifically, spouse (married spouse, or common law spouse where the couple have been co-habiting for a minimum of one (1) year) and dependent children (including step or adopted children, under age twenty-one (21), or over age twenty-one (21) and attending university or similar institution, chiefly dependent on the employee for support and maintenance).

    Discharged employees are not eligible for the EAP. Discharged employees who are participating in the EAP at the time of their discharge will be referred to an alternate resource as appropriate.

  7. Cost

    The services of the EAP will be available at no cost to eligible employees and their families subject to a yearly maximum of sessions. Where it is deemed necessary by the EAP to refer an employee for treatment outside of the EAP, the employee will be responsible for incurring the cost, if any of such treatment.

  8. Termination of the Program

    A decision by the Union or the company to withdraw from this program must be given to the other party no less than thirty (30) days prior to termination.

  9. Program Funding

    It is understood that the EAP will not result in any additional cost as a result of the implementation or operation of the program, except as may be agreed to by the Company.

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