American Federation Of State County & Municipal Employees is an employee union serving Chicago, IL and surrounding areas. AFSCME is committed to helping its members realize their full potential and the PSP helps members address issues that create personal difficulties, and/or jeopardize job performance or security. PSP expands AFSCME's tradition of service to those it represents by providing professional assistance when personal problems are experienced, and by providing support as individuals go through the process of personal change. The earlier assistance is provided, the easier it is to find solutions.
The PSP, a union-based employee assistance program (EAP) began providing services to AFSCME-represented employees and their dependent family in August 1992. Some union members had raised concerns to the union about the highly variable quality of services in the state's non-professional EAP of that time. As a result of state and union contract negotiations, it was agreed that the state would pay a per capita fee, per year, to the AFSCME Benefit Plan & Trust (ABPT) to set up and run the PSP.
The ABPT hired a Certified Employee Assistance Professional to create and manage the PSP statewide. PSP now employs eight full-time, licensed and certified mental health and employee assistance professionals, and contracts with over 40 individual or group counseling practices around the state to provide services to members and their families. In all, PSP provides in-person services from close to 35 locations throughout Illinois. Since its inception serving members employed by the state, the PSP has been negotiated into many additional employer contracts.
Individuals seek assistance from PSP for a wide range of personal concerns including stress, family, alcohol and drugs, emotional difficulties, and legal and financial concerns. Such problems may have repercussions on job performance and referrals are welcome, however, utilization of PSP's services is voluntary. PSP wil