LOS ANGELES, Calif. – EAPA 2017 Los Angeles was held October 3-6 at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in downtown LA. Some of the sessions the author of this blog attended are posted below.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 4 –
A New System for Integrating Mental Health into Workplace Wellness was led by Julie Marshall, PhD, CEAP, VP of Clinical and Operational Services with Cascade Centers, Inc.; and Anna Meiners, MA, Director of Account Services with Cascade. Marshall and Meiners discussed Whole Life Scale, a validated assessment tool that measures nine behavioral health issues and provides proactive intervention strategies. The nine issues, or domains, are: anxiety, anger, depression, sleep, post-traumatic stress disorder, relationships, stress, substance abuse, and work engagement.
Capabilities of the scale include providing proactive direction to EAP and mental health services, increasing awareness of mental health issues, and integrating mental health into workplace wellness campaigns. The scale features individual summaries; immediate, in-assessment feedback; and links to online solution centers.
Richard Bond, Manager, Workplace Services EAP, Optum; and CEAPs George Melgarejo, Reon Tesar, Peter Bunnell, and Tarsyia Waddell, presented Your Company’s Threat Management Team: EAP is Key. The discussion included a brief history of how threat management has evolved, examples of threat management procedures, and identifying key issues for EAP.
Threat management has its roots in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) workplace violence guidelines, and drug-free workplace policies. As the number of incidents has increased, threat management has moved from being reactionary to more and more proactive. “Where is the organization most vulnerable?” stated Bond.
As well as EAP, threat management teams typically consist of HR, security, legal, and occupational health – each with a clearly defined role. “EAP’s role in threat management is more significant with an on-site model,” Melgarejo said.
Ken Burgess, Business Development Consultant, Chestnut Global Partners; and Puneet Leekha, Assistant General Counsel with Chestnut, presented What is Duty of Care and Why is it Important to the EAP Field? Duty of Care refers to an obligation to conform to certain standards of conduct for the protection of others against unreasonable risks of harm.
The United States lags behind the rest of the world in providing Duty of Care (DOC) to expats and their families, according to Burgess.
To ensure proper DOC, Burgess said every company should, at a minimum, require a comprehensive travel policy to track everyone 24/7; and provide cross-cultural training and orientation; emergency evacuation plans for terrorism and natural disasters; a medical emergency evacuation plan; and ongoing, in-country support.
According to Burgess, Duty of Care represents a unique business opportunity for EAPs. “Very few people are doing this, but many people are capable of doing it,” he said.
PHOTOS: The beautiful Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in downtown Los Angeles, site of this year’s World EAP Conference. Above right: The fabled Hollywood sign, a landmark of the LA area.