February 19th, 2014

HR tutorial on handling Depression at work


New from your friends in the legal-averse HR industry: a webinar for HR folks on how to avoid granting (un)paid leave or making federal law mandated accommodations for people with mental disabilities called depression.

Session title: “Depression in the Workplace”

A rational person would think the session would be led by a psychologist, but nooo, it’s an attorney from the Eyres Law Group. Of course, if you or I non-attorneys professed to opine on subjects delving into the application of laws, we would be accused of an illegal act. But attorneys believe mental health and psychology are something not requiring any training or specialization.

The webinar topic list is upsetting, given what we know about the trauma that workplace bullying causes. And the fact that 49% of bullied individuals suffer clinical depression for the first time in their lives at the hands of an abuser at work!

Look at these webinar goals:

• How to tell if a depressed employee is “disabled” under the ADA’s mental impairment definition (WBI: the only thing worse than attorneys playing psychologist is HR doing the same. Yikes!)

• Whether depression is generally a “covered” disability if it’s the result of an underlying medical condition or due to an emotional trauma (WBI: which, of course, would never be caused BY the workplace)

• The medical inquires, limited examinations, and documentation you may legally request that the employee provide in support of a need for leave as accommodation (WBI: here’s where employers hire their own hack shrink who conducts an “independent” medical exam guaranteed to conclude that the problem is not real, these medical professionals rarely practice outside employer panels)

• How to respond to erratic attendance and persistent tardiness, including when to raise potential FMLA leave as an option (WBI: FMLA, in most cases is unpaid leave forcing workers to stay on the job against their physicians’ advice)

• How to successfully manage intermittent leave for chronic depression and curb potential FMLA abuse related to depressed workers (WBI: yes, abuse of unpaid leave is surely a chronic problem in the American laborforce that works more hours than workers in any other industrialized nation because there is no paid sick leave policies and leaves must be begged for. This smells like employer paranoia. Too bad employers don’t have to answer yet for real abuse, abuse of employees!)

• When you may legally discipline or terminate an employee with depression without sparking liability under federal disability and leave laws (WBI: Ah yes, the real agenda — how to fire the harmed employee.)

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 at 8:07 am and is filed under Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.



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