• EAP and COVID-19: Return to Work Safely Protocol: COVID-19 Specific National Protocol for Employers and Workers

      Government of Ireland. Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of Health (2020-05-08)
      We are all confronted with a situation that was unimaginable a few short weeks ago. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted severely on every part of our society and our economy. In the face of this, the biggest challenge we have encountered in decades, Irish people have almost universally stepped up to the plate and adhered to the strict guidelines put in place by the Government, following the advice of the National Public Health Emergency Response Team (NPHET). Because of this strict adherence to the rules, we have all contributed to the progress that Ireland has made in containing the spread of COVID-19 and, in so doing, we have saved lives. Now, because of the progress made, we are beginning to move to the next phase in reducing the spread of the virus, while starting to gradually re-open our economy and our society. In doing so, we still need to make sure that we adhere to the rules of the new way of living and working, so that we maintain the gains we have made, and continue to suppress the spread of the virus. Work is a key part of life and most of us want to return to our jobs as soon as possible. But we need to get back to work safely.
    • EAP and COVID-19: Sharing the Vision: A mental Health Policy for Everyone

      Government of Ireland. Department of Health, 2020
      The publication of the Vision for Change mental health policy in 2006 set a high standard for the development of mental health policy in Ireland. As a result, there have been many important changes in the past decade aimed at improving people’s health and wellbeing. In recent times, mental health has received much attention. The outbreak of COVID 19 throughout the world created significant stress, anxiety, worry and fear for many people. The disease itself was further compounded by other impacts such as social isolation, disruption to daily life, uncertainty about employment and financial security. The Government response was rapid and a wholeof-population plan was put in place to support healthcare staff and the general population by providing health and wellbeing advice, resilience based training and providing free online interventions such as counselling and crisis texting for all in need. Indeed, the ability to create additional online interventions to augment existing services with such a wide reach, has in many ways changed how we treat the mild to moderate mental health needs of the population. In many ways the pandemic assisted Ireland to improve public attitudes to mental health because of the statutory, voluntary and community commitment to raising awareness and creating positive changes in how Ireland thinks about and delivers mental health services.
    • EAP and COVID-19: Work Safely Protocol: COVID-19 National Protocol for Employers and Workers

      Government of Ireland (2020-11-20)
      The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every part of Ireland’s society and economy. In the face of this, the biggest challenge we have encountered in decades, the people of Ireland have universally stepped up to the plate and adhered to the strict guidelines put in place by the Government, following the advice of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET). We have all contributed to the progress that Ireland has made in containing the spread of COVID-19 and in so doing we have saved lives. However, our continued progress in reducing the spread of the virus remains challenging. We collectively and individually need to continue our efforts to keep the virus under control. The revision of the Return to Work Safely Protocol has become necessary to ensure that it reflects the Government’s Resilience and Recovery 2020-2021: Plan for Living with COVID- 19 as well as updating the public health advice available since its first publication. This revised document is now called the Work Safely Protocol. It continues to be designed to support employers and workers to put infection prevention and control (IPC) and other measures in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. The Work Safely Protocol also covers the measures needed to both ensure the safe operation of workplaces and the re- opening of workplaces following temporary closure due to local and regional restrictions.
    • EAP in Ireland: Legislation is Driving Change

      Quinlan, Maurice (Employee Assistance Professionals Association, 2020-07)
      Ireland is a small European country with a population of 4.7 million people – 2.2 million of which are currently in the workforce. Ireland is divided into 26 counties in the South and six counties in the North. Ireland was accepted as a member of the European Union (EU) in 1972 – the EU currently consists of 26 European countries. One of the EU institutions, the European Commission, exerts considerable influence on employment legislation, which impacts employee health and well-being in all EU nations.
    • Employee Alcoholism Programme

      Quinlan, Maurice (1980-09)

      Government of Ireland (2020)
      Foreword: The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) and the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) were requested by the Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection to review their respective Codes of Practice on bullying in the workplace and to develop a single Joint Code, encompassing both organisations’ remit and responsibilities in this area. This Code of Practice comes into effect on 23 December 2020 and from that date it replaces the Code of Practice entitled “Code of Practice for Employers and Employees on the Prevention and Resolution of Bullying at Work” which was issued by the HSA in March 2007 in accordance with the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 and the “Code of Practice Detailing Procedures for Addressing Bullying in the Workplace” issued by the then Labour Relations Commission LRC (now WRC) in 2002 in accordance with section 42 of the Industrial Relations Act 1990. Notice of issue of this Code of Practice, and the withdrawal of both Codes of Practice, is published in the Iris Oifigiúil.
    • Legislation: Mental Health and the Workplace - The Employment Equality Acts 1998 -2015 and The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005

      Quinlan, Maurice (2020)
      It is important for employers and employees to know about their legislative rights and responsibilities in relation to mental health at work. Two of the most relevant pieces of legislation are the Employment Equality Acts 1998–2015 and the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005. Employees with mental health problems that come within the definition of disability in the Employment Equality Acts 1998-2015, have significant enforceable rights. These include rights: • Not to be discriminated against on grounds of their mental ill health, • Not to be harassed on account of their mental disability • Not to be victimised for asserting their rights. In addition employers have a significant obligation to conduct a risk assessment on all mental health risks and put in place proportionate control measures which will enable employees with disabilities access and participate fully in employment.
    • A Social Partnership Approach to Work Life Balance in the European Union: The Irish Experience

      Quinlan, Maurice (2005)
      Over the past number of years there has been considerable focus on the integration of Employee Assistance and Work Life programmes in the United States. A national survey conducted by EAPA, EASNA, and AWLP found there is a trend towards the integration of Employee Assistance and Work Life. Many US providers and multi-national companies will seek to extend their EAP’s and Work Life Programmes globally. It is sometimes assumed that the EAP’s and Work Life models that operate in the US will transfer but this is often not the case. There is a cultural dimension to EAP’s and Work Life Programmes that is often overlooked. The European Union ( EU ) is involved in the greatest example of integration in recent history and an understanding of the EU and its legal system will assist those providing their services. In the EU, EAP’s did not follow the same growth pattern as in the US. Professionals in European Countries working with business such as Psychologists, Social workers, and Counsellors did not recognise the need for EAP’s as, in their view, programmes to deal with personal problems in the workplace already existed. The concept of Work Life is widely known and accepted in many European Countries, however there is little evidence of research specifically on the integration of EAP’s and Work life programmes.This article will look at one EU Country, Ireland and outline the history and development of EAP’s and Work Life and present case studies of Irish Companies who have developed Work Life Programmes.