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A. General

There are health and behavioural problems which have a potentially serious impact upon the lives of those members so afflicted and, in turn, their families and their job performance. This is true whether the problem is one of physical, mental, or emotional illnesses, finances, marital or family stress, alcoholism, drug abuse, legal problems, or other concerns.

The Association recognizes that almost any human problem can be successfully treated provided it is identified in its early stages and a referral is made to an appropriate treatment resource. The Association recognizes that the educational system is deprived of the full benefit of talent, experience, and professional training when personal problems reduce job performance or the coping ability of a member.

The Association recognizes that rehabilitating competent members is more beneficial than terminating their services because of serious decline in work performance.

Assisting the member to maintain or return to a high level of job performance benefits not only the member but also the students, colleagues, the system, and the community.

An employee assistance program should operate with the full support of the Department of Education, the School Boards Association, the NL Association of School System Administrators, and the Newfoundland and Labrador Teachers’ Association to assist all members who may have personal problems which affect their job performance and to help them to gain assistance at the earliest possible time.

Assistance to the member to overcome job performance decline related to identifiable physical and/or psychological illnesses shall be subject to the leave provisions of the Collective Agreement.

Any member who feels they have a problem is encouraged to seek help and any decision on the part of a member to seek such help will not interfere with their position of employment. Confidentiality will be maintained at all times.

The Association supports an employee assistance program which is interventive and preventive in nature and which attempts to correct job performance difficulties at the earliest possible time. Such a program is in no way meant to interfere with the private life of a member. [Jan/8-9/99] [1999 BGM]

The Association recognizes that the purpose of an employee assistance program is to help facilitate the general well-being of the members it represents as well as to ensure their rights under the Collective Agreement.

As part of the proactive component of the employee assistance program, all members, branches and school administrators may approach the program to request workshops, seminars, presentations or assistance with in-school projects on member wellness and related topics. This component of the employee assistance program is referred to as the Wellness Program. [Jan/8-9/99] [1999 BGM]

The Association recognizes that any participation in an employee assistance program shall not be used for disciplinary purposes or in any manner restrict or jeopardize the participating member’s opportunity for advancement or other work-related alternatives.

Enrolment in the Employee Assistance Program, which includes access to funding under the Membership Assistance Plan, may be granted to substitute teachers who may not meet the normal eligibility requirements due to being unable to substitute teach as a result of a medical illness/injury which precluded them from teaching during the required time limits. Such access to the Employee Assistance Program and funding for counselling and/or travel available through the Membership Assistance Plan will only be considered on a case-by-case basis and only with the approval of the Assistant Executive Director. [June/11-12/99] [JC/Feb/00] [2001 BGM]

All members who enroll in the Employee Assistance Program shall receive a copy of the NLTA Employee Assistance Program policy. [Jan/17-18/08] [JC/Apr/08] [2009 BGM]

The Employee Assistance Program operates from the NLTA Office within Programs and Services. [Feb/3-4/84] [1984 AGM]