The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) was established to provide assistance for FDC employees during emergency crises. Contributing memberships, particularly from corrections’ personnel help support the Foundation’s EAP. The following Criteria and Guidelines will enable the Corrections Foundation to assist employees who are experiencing an emergency crisis promptly and efficiently. They will also help to ensure that the level of need for each request is met by giving those initiating the request (Regional Director, Warden, Circuit Administrator, or Central Office Bureau Chief) more information concerning the assistance available through the EAP.
The person for whom the request is made must be a current Department of Corrections employee or contractor providing direct services to the Dept. of Corrections – such as through medical privatization. A higher amount of financial assistance is provided for employees who are also members of the Corrections Foundation. Membership must be in effect 30 days prior to the crisis or emergency. If an employee is not a member at the time of the crisis a minimum amount of non-member assistance will be given.
Financial assistance is available for crisis situations involving critical health, illness, injuries and other emergency situations affecting Florida Department of Corrections employees and/or their immediate family (spouse and dependent children who are 21 and under) and with out-of-pocket expenses exceeding $1,000, so that there is a presumption of need. The Foundation’s EAP does not provide assistance for non-emergency situations or general financial hardship issues. The Program is not a supplemental health insurance and not intended to cover co-payments and routine medical expenses. The Program is intended to assist when employees are facing an emergency crisis situation, which could be an extreme illness, critical accident, house fire or other tragedy facing the employee or an immediate family member.
Assistance for emergencies and crisis situations are considered on a case by case basis. Employees should explore all other avenues for assistance, insurance benefits, etc., prior to contacting the Corrections Foundation.
In some cases an employee may be given financial assistance if a hardship exists due to caring for a critically ill parent or grandchild if the employee is the legal guardian or caretaker, and/or extensive travel, medical appointments, or specialist visits have created a financial hardship.
Any Florida Department of Corrections employee, including OPS, whether a member of the Foundation or not, can submit a written request for assistance through the chain of command indicated below.
The first step is for an employee to review the criteria to determine if their situation is one that we provide assistance for and write a letter to their warden, circuit administrator or supervisor explaining their crisis situation and need for financial assistance and request that the Employee Assistance Request form be submitted to the Foundation. The Warden or Circuit Administrator and/or supervisor may request assistance on behalf of the employee; however, they must obtain and submit the necessary documentation required for assistance and verify with the employee that assistance is needed.
The warden, circuit administrator and/or supervisor will then complete the Employee Assistance Request form to convey the situation to the Corrections Foundation. Email Sheri Logue at [email protected] if you need a request form.
The request form should be coordinated through the appropriate offices as outlined below.
|Work Location||Request Initiator||Final Review/Signature|
|Community Corrections||Circuit Administrator||Corrections Foundation|
|Central Office||Bureau Chief||Corrections Foundation|
|Regional Office||Regional Director||Corrections Foundation|
Examples of crisis situations, as well as situations that will not be considered are provided for you below.
All requests, once reviewed by the Regional Director, Warden, Circuit Administrator, or Central Office Bureau Chief should be scanned and emailed to [email protected] or sent by fax to 850-410-4411.
If the request is approved a check will be issued to the employee and the initiating office (Regional Director, Warden, Circuit Administrator, or Central Office Bureau Chief) will be notified of the final decision via email.
The Corrections Foundation, based on knowledge they receive from the Employee Assistance Request Form, will make a determination of critical emergency need and level of assistance available for each situation.
Please complete the entire form, including an estimate or actual out-of-pocket medical bills and leave balances. Any incomplete forms will be returned to the initiator to complete.
The Corrections Foundation Board requests that all Employee Assistance Requests be submitted regardless of whether or not the employee’s Regional Director, Warden, Circuit Administrator, or Central Office Bureau Chief recommends assistance or not. If assistance is not recommended, the supervisor shall note on the Employee Assistance form the reason and then the request should be forwarded to the Corrections Foundation for final review. The Corrections Foundation will notify the employee of the final decision on the request.
The Corrections Foundation has established a Disaster Relief Program to provide financial relief to those who have had their primary home and/or vehicle damaged by a natural disaster and may only be used for that purpose. Funding for the Disaster Relief Program is provided through a portion of payroll deductions from FDC employees to the Corrections Foundation. Should the Disaster Relief Fund be depleted at any time, funding from the Employee Assistance Program may be used to supplement.
A natural disaster is defined as any tropical depression, tropical storm, hurricane, tornado, storm, flood, high water, tidal wave, earthquake, volcanic eruption, landslide, snowstorm, fire, explosion, or other natural catastrophe.
If an individual believes he or she is affected by a natural disaster, he or she may request assistance from the Disaster Relief Fund. Requests shall be categorized as follows to determine eligibility:
Nonmembers deemed eligible for assistance from the Disaster Relief Program may receive assistance at the current minimal level provided by the Corrections Foundation, not to exceed $100.
Only the main home and vehicles shall be considered for assistance. Damaged fences, damaged structures separate from the primary home, damaged secondary homes, and loss of food shall not be considered for financial assistance.
Proof of damages, including pictures and/or documentation from insurance companies and/or government agencies, must be submitted with requests. Requests submitted without proof shall be returned as incomplete. Returned requests may be resubmitted with appropriate documentation for consideration.
Requests must be made within 60 days of suffering damage. Requests made after 60 days shall be denied as not having been filed in a timely manner.
Those who receive relief from the Disaster Relief Fund may still qualify for financial assistance from the Employee Assistance Criteria if a request is made to the Employee Assistance Program 18 months or less from receiving financial assistance from the Disaster Relief Fund. There is no limit on lifetime assistance for the Disaster Relief Fund.
The Disaster Relief Fund is not insurance, should not be considered insurance, and should not be used in the place of insurance. The Corrections Foundation encourages all individuals to review their insurance policies to determine if they have an appropriate level of coverage.
NOTE: Each request should be based upon an unexpected emergency or crisis and a critical need for assistance must be demonstrated. If a critical need cannot be demonstrated, a request should not be recommended for assistance; however, it should still be sent to the Corrections Foundation for final review.
Examples of hardships that do not qualify for assistance include:
Employee assistance may be granted based on available resources. Memberships must be in existence for 30 days prior to the crisis situation and members may only receive assistance once in an 18-month period and a maximum of five times in a lifetime.
Assistance is available for FDC employees and their immediate family only. Immediate family is defined as spouse and dependent children residing with the member. In some cases an employee may be given financial assistance for his/her parents or grandchildren, if the employee is the primary caregiver and the family member resides with the employee and/or a financial hardship has been placed on the employee due to care of a critically ill family member.
Membership in the Corrections Foundation is not intended to create a right to receive assistance from the EAP. The decision to provide assistance is a matter of discretion retained by the Corrections Foundation. This decision is based upon the criteria within this document, Corrections Foundation interpretation of the critical nature of a request, and the availability of funds.
The EAP is not intended to serve as an insurance policy or replace the need for fire, flood, home, auto, health and/or life insurance. Unfortunately, resources are not adequate enough to assist families with expenses that insurance is meant to cover. The State of Florida provides many affordable insurance options for health, life, and long-term care. In addition, we encourage officers and staff to participate in the deferred comp program to ensure employees are adequately prepared for retirement.
The death of a loved one is an event that every one of our members will someday experience and the funds available are not large enough to assist with funeral expenses. We strongly encourage you to seek life insurance coverage to prepare for funeral expenses for your entire family and to obtain other insurance policies to prepare for unexpected tragedies.
FDC employees and contractors may become a member of the Corrections Foundation to help others in need and to prepare if they should ever need to be a recipient of assistance due to a situation that meets the EAP criteria. Several options are available for becoming a contributing member of the Foundation:
Funds received through payroll deduction, annual membership dues and special fundraisers are used to assist employees and their families in times of emergency. A 15% administrative fee is utilized for operating costs for the Employee Assistance Program.
Members who are contract employees doing the work of FDC employees but are not state employees are considered “Supporting Members” and can join by completing an annual membership form and submitting a check for $52 annually. Contract employees both medical and non-medical can take part in other benefits of membership.
As more employees become members, the Corrections Foundation will be better able to provide needed assistance. Members are asked to help further the mission of the Corrections Foundation by bringing any information or suggestions to the attention of the Foundation board and the Foundation staff that may help to build and improve the organization. The Corrections Foundation shall keep contributing members informed of activities through email, our website at www.correctionsfoundation.org, and on social networks.
The Foundation keeps accurate and current membership records including the name and location of all members at its principal office. At any given time, records can be provided on employees who are members of the Foundation either through payroll deduction, annual membership or lifetime membership by institution/facility.
As the reviewing authorities for the EAP, Regional Directors, Wardens, Circuit Administrators, or Central Office Bureau Chiefs are entrusted with personal, confidential information on fellow FDC employees. It is of the utmost importance that the confidentiality of this information be respected as it is considered for financial assistance. Florida laws restrict the distribution and protect the confidentiality of medical information. The EAP form has a section for an employee’s signature granting the initiating authority permission to review the information and proceed for approval by the Corrections Foundation. The information on the request should at no time be discussed with anyone other than the initiating office and Corrections Foundation Board or staff.
The Corrections Foundation staff is available at any time to answer questions or concerns regarding the EAP and these procedures. There can be exceptions to any rule and the uniqueness of every situation has not been addressed in this document. If you feel an employee has a legitimate request which doesn’t fit the above guidelines the Foundation Board of Directors can be asked to consider individual requests. Feel free to contact the Corrections Foundation staff any time.
For more information about the Corrections Foundation and the EAP, please contact Chris Akins, Executive Director (850) 717-3715 or Sheri Logue, Administrative Director at (850) 717-3714.
Revised: November 19, 2020