Employee Assistance Program


Discontinuation of the EAP Program on June 1, 2017

This notice is to inform you that based on low utilization, costs, and duplication of benefits, the Saint Mary’s University Faculty Union Health & Wellness Trustees have unanimously voted to discontinue the EAP Program provided through Ceridian/LifeWorks on June 1, 2017.

Prior to making this decision, the SMUFU Board of Trustees conducted a careful investigation into the types of services provided by LifeWorks, the utilization rate of the program by the SMUFU membership, and the overlap between some of these services and services available in other ways through our plan. Based on the low utilization rate, the duplication of benefits, and the cost of the EAP services, the Trustees decided that the benefits did not outweigh the costs associated with the program, all of which are paid by members of the benefits plan administered by the Saint Mary’s University Faculty Union Health & Wellness Trust.

The Board of Trustees wishes to give the SMUFU membership, who are currently using the EAP, as much notice as possible in aid of replacing as many services as possible with benefits available in other ways; for example, under the group benefit plan, you and your dependants (in a family plan) are entitled to a reimbursement of 75% up to a maximum of $1,500 each calendar year for the services of a Psychologist or Social Worker to a lifetime maximum of $6,000.

The Trustees sincerely believe that this change will improve our chance to provide good services to our members at a fair cost.


LifeWorks Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Summary of Services
Being together.  It’s what life is all about. And it’s why we offer LifeWorksâ – to help you manage your work and personal life so you can focus on what’s important to you. LifeWorks is fast, easy to use and completely confidential.  It’s available to you and your immediate family at no cost to you. And best of all, it’s there for you any time of the day or night, wherever you are.

Be empowered every day.  A healthy balance between your work and personal life is important to us. LifeWorks can help you to lead a healthier, happier and more productive life.

LifeWorks can provide you with support, advice and information on a wide range of every day issues including:

  • Parenting & child care
  • Education
  • Older adults
  • Midlife & retirement
  • Disability
  • Financial
  • Legal
  • Everyday issues
  • Work
  • Managing people
  • Health
  • Emotional well-being
  • Grief & loss
  • Addiction & recovery

LifeWorks offers you:

  • Free service to you and your immediate family
  • Confidential, personal support available in more than 140 languages
  • English and French counsellors available through a toll free number 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year
  • LifeWorks Online – an informative Web site that gives you direct access to required information and resources
  • Abundance of resources and tools including booklets, recordings and Life Articles
  • Referrals to resources, services and support in your community
  • A commitment to always being there when you have a question or need help

To find out more about how LifeWorks can help, call to speak with a LifeWorks consultant anytime, or visit the LifeWorks Web site at www.lifeworks.com.  The phone number and website user id and password have been provided to you in both hard copy (card) and via email. If you have misplaced the information, please contact Valerie Fraser, your Group Benefits Administrator, at 1-800-268-0285, Ext. 242.

 

Frequently Asked Questions:
What is LifeWorks?
LifeWorks provides you and your immediate family with 24/7 access to the confidential support and resources you need to manage virtually any personal or professional issue, so you can lead a healthier, happier, more productive life. From face-to-face counselling to work-life balance and everyday issues, LifeWorks can help manage any issue, large or small.

Who can use this program?
The program is available to all employees and their immediate family members who are eligible for coverage under your employee benefit plan.

When can I access the program?
You can access expert counsellors 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days of the year.

Why would I contact LifeWorks?
LifeWorks is designed to help you find the support, advice and resources you need – no question is too small, no issue is too big. In fact, if anything is troubling you or a member of your family, you should contact LifeWorks immediately. The program provides you with confidential counselling, personal support, referrals to community resources, Life Articles, booklets, audiotapes, CD’s, and LifeWorks Online, an informative Web site featuring thousands of online resources.

Is the program completely confidential?
Yes. Confidentiality is critical to the success of the program and the utmost care is taken to protect the identity of those who choose to use it. In fact, LifeWorks is required by law to treat your information with the same level of confidentiality as is applied to medical records.  Ceridian uses the privacy standards recommended by the Canadian Standards Association and adopted as part of the Personal Information and Protection and Electronic Documents Act. Ceridian employees are bonded, and bound to the principles of confidentiality and their professional legal, ethical requirements.

What kind of information about the use of the program is provided to my employer?
Annually, employers receive a usage report summarizing the number of people who have used the program. This report will in no way reveal the identity of individuals who have used the program.

If required, how quickly can I expect to get a face-to-face appointment with a counselor?
In emergency situations, appointments will be arranged the same day. Appointments will be offered within three business days for non-emergencies.

Who pays for the program?
There is no charge to eligible individuals who use the program. This is a fully paid benefit from your organization.

What happens during a face-to-face counselling session?
When you attend a face-to-face counselling session, the counsellor will:

  • Establish an environment that makes you feel comfortable discussing problems and concerns
  • Listen and ask questions in order to clearly understand the problem
  • Explore the expectations that you have to resolve this problem
  • Work with you to identify options and choices
  • Develop strategies to reduce or resolve the problem

The counsellor will also give some objective feedback and provide problem solving and support when needed. Together, you and the counsellor will establish a helpful and effective action plan.

What qualifications do the counsellors have?
The fully qualified, professional counsellors have been carefully screened and credentialed by Ceridian, and only those with extensive experience are selected. Many of our counsellors have PhDs, and MDs; minimally, they are required to have a Master’s Degree in one of the following fields: Psychology, Social Work or Educational Counselling.

How many counselling sessions are available to me?
Short-term, solution-focused counselling is provided.  The service can be accessed for each problem or issue that you are experiencing. The number of sessions varies and is determined on a case-by-case basis. Where the problem may be ongoing in nature, the counsellor will discuss the appropriateness of a referral to a community resource and will work with you to access such a resource.
If you are in a state of crisis, we will offer the necessary support to stabilize the situation regardless of whether your issues are short-term or ongoing.

What kinds of problems or concerns can I get help with?

  • Parenting & child care
  • Education
  • Older adults
  • Midlife & retirement
  • Disability
  • Financial
  • Legal
  • Everyday issues
  • Work
  • Managing people
  • Health
  • Emotional well-being
  • Grief & loss
  • Addiction & recovery

Is participation in the program mandatory?
No. Participation is voluntary.

How do I contact LifeWorks?
LifeWorks can be contacted online at www.lifeworks.com. You will need to enter your User ID and Password that your organization has provided to you. You can also contact LifeWorks via the telephone number your organization has provided to you.