October 22, 2021 at 4:33 pm
Employee Support Programme – objections and advice
The MUT has objected with the OPM and the Ministry for Education about the implementation of the Employee Support Programme (ESP) with educators. The programme is supposed to provide an independent psychosocial support to employees who request the support. However, the way the programme is being implemented is highly objectionable.
The MUT received reports, and these were verified, whereby referrals for the service were made directly by management whilst educators were reprimanded for refusing such a referral. This clearly defeats the objective of the programme and the freedom of the employee to choose whether to take psychosocial support in the first place and secondly the provider of such support. Having the management refer an employee to ESP is in violation of the said employee rights.
Furthermore, and in total breach of confidentiality, the MUT verified reports whereby information divulged in confidence during ESP sessions were passed to management. Management even contacted employees with the said confidential information at hand. It is clear that the ESP is being used as another oppressive management tool rather than as a support service. The MUT condemns this practice and is advising members to refrain from seeking such services until the level of trust and independence of the service from management are guaranteed.