In light of the traumatic events of September 11, I want to remind supervisors within the University community of the availability of Strong Employee Assistance Program (EAP) as an important staff management resource. As supervisors, you are faced with the need to help your staff maintain their focus at work, and at the same time respond to the realities of what such a traumatic event can yield.
There is not one standard pattern of reaction to the extreme stress of a traumatic event. Some people respond immediately, while others have delayed reactions—sometimes months or even years later. Some have adverse effects for a long period of time, while others recover rather quickly.
Strong EAP is available to faculty, staff, and their family members as a benefit of employment. Therefore, EAP will provide professional consultations to you, as supervisors, about how to best support and manage staff who may be experiencing the impact of this recent trauma in a way that is evident at work.
The program's professional staff can also talk with your staff groups about responses to this traumatic event, emphasizing effective coping strategies, if this method makes more sense from the supervisor's point of view.
Jack Herrmann, director of Strong EAP has been in NYC since September 11, playing a key leadership role with the American Red Cross, coordinating mental health support for families and rescue workers. In his absence I encourage you to contact Ann Betz, manager of Strong EAP, if you want to consult about any issues related to these events and their impact on your staff.
Ann can be reached directly at x3-4622 or by e-mail at: Ann_Betz@urmc.rochester.edu. If you want to schedule an appointment, you may do so through the program secretary at x5-4987.