Supervisors have the challenging task of assisting individuals in maximizing their potential at the work site. Most of the time, the relationship between supervisor and employee is gratifying and mutually beneficial. Occasionally, however, supervisors have the difficult job of assisting an employee whose job performance and productivity are below standard expectations. Personal problems are often at the root of an individual’s failure to meet minimum job standards.

    The manner in which one copes with a personal problem may not always be appropriate. The stress of the situation may lead the employee to act and react in counterproductive ways. The Employee Assistance Program is available to all employees who having personal problems and are undergoing undo stress. 

    Supervisors are in strategic positions to observe behavioral changes that may negatively affect job performance. Intervention is critical in preventing further deterioration in work performance that may jeopardize an individual’s ability to work effectively. Supervisors may suggest that an employee attend EAP counseling sessions as part of the plan to redirect the individual to improved work performance.

    Two points are critical in assisting an employee who is exhibiting problematic behavior: 

    1.       Early intervention maximizes the possibility of resolution in a timely manner.

    2.       Clearly defining the problematic behavior leads to clearly defined goals for intervention.

    The following guidelines will assist supervisors in making referrals

    1.       A supervisor may determine that the employee needs assistance in improving job performance.

    2.       A supervisor may determine that the employee needs assistance in accessing resources for a personal problem that interferes with job performance.

    3.       A supervisor may determine that the employee needs assistance in accessing resources for a personal problem that violates the standards and practices of Birmingham City Schools.

    4.       A supervisor may determine that the employee requires assistance in improving personal outlook or attitude, when one’s outlook or attitude interferes with minimum job performance.

    5.       A supervisor may determine that the employee requires assistance in reviewing one’s approach to the job or the job site, when one’s approach interferes with minimum job performance.

    Disciplinary Action: 

    1.       The relationship between EAP services and an employment action will be at the discretion of the employee's supervisor. Referrals will not necessarily substitute for disciplinary actions by the employee’s supervisor.

    2.       EAP personnel will provide referral responses to supervisors only with a signed release from the employee.

    3.       EAP personnel will respond promptly to all appropriate supervisor requests.

    4.       EAP personnel will not attempt to counsel with individuals who are under the influence of any type of substance and/or alcohol.

    Voluntary participation:

    1.       Voluntary participation in the Employee Assistance Program will not substitute for disciplinary action by the employee’s supervisor. The relationship between EAP services and employment action is at the discretion of the employee's supervisor.

    2.       The Employee Assistance Program will accommodate personnel by providing flexible hours of service, not to extend beyond 6:00 P.M. on designated days.

    3.       Voluntary employees who are reticent to access the Employee Assistance Program office at the Lincoln Center may arrange with the Employee Assistance Program staff to meet for one initial interview at an acceptable location. Hours for these appointments will be between 7:00 A.M. and 4:30 P.M. Central Standard Time (CST) and between 7:00 A.M. and 5:00 P.M. Daylight Saving Time (DST). An acceptable location excludes the employee’s home or any establishment that serves alcohol. 

    Procedures for Making the Referral 

    1.       Once the supervisor determines that a referral is necessary, the supervisor will complete the “Confidential Supervisory Referral Form” (attached) in the employee’s presence. The supervisor will explain the behaviors that have led to the referral. The employee will sign the referral form as a way of agreeing to the counseling strategy. Keep one copy for your file and give one to the employee.

    2.       Fax the referral to the EAP office at 231-2323 or email to:  swilliams5@bhm.k12.al.us. Please fax the referral personally. Do not ask office personnel to fax the form or to file it. Keep your copy in a locked file drawer that is limited to your access.

    3.       An EAP counselor will assess the employee within two working days.

    4.       Following the initial assessment, the EAP counselor will send a “Supervisory referral/Confirmation of Participation” form (attached). The form will be in an envelope addressed to the supervisor making the referral. Only the addressee should open the envelope.

    5.       EAP records are strictly confidential. The supervisor will receive information regarding the employee’s willingness to participate in the program. Standards of Practice prohibit the EAP counselor from sharing any information about the content of the session(s). Under no circumstances will the EAP office furnish an employee’s file.

    The Employee Assistance Program is a service for all employees of Birmingham City Schools. Asking for help is a sign of strength and demonstrates a willingness to improve. The EAP encourages all employees to take advantage of this valuable resource.

    Thank you for your cooperation. If you have any questions, please contact your EAP counselor (Shelia Williams) at 231-2263 or email at:  swilliams5@bhm.k12.al.us