Erika Shea never imagined she would personally be involved with EAPs, aside from setting one up for an employer and gathering all of the marketing information for their employees to use. Generally, the benefit consultant for Group Insurance Associates, a partner firm of United Benefit Advisors, had found them to be an underutilized resource. However, the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., changed her perspective.
On the afternoon of the Dec. 14, 2012, shooting, Shea learned that a client's employee's son was one of the victims. Her client asked her to be ready to have grief counselors available by the next week. That following Wednesday there was a large employee turnout when she brought a counselor to the client's office. "It was very well-received and appreciated," Shea says. "If nothing else, it shined a light on what's available to them, and I hope that perhaps some of the employees continued to take advantage of the EAP services on an individual level."
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