Section: Personnel
Policy Number: 4-33
Policy Name: ASSISTING EMPLOYEES WITH LIFE-THREATENING ILLNESSES
Date: 1997

GUIDELINES

The University recognizes that employees with life-threatening illnesses including Human Immune-deficiency Virus (HIV), Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and Aids-Related Complex (ARC) may wish to continue working. The University is sensitive to the needs of these employees and supports equitable treatment for all employees.

Each case will be handled confidentially and on an individual basis.

Employees with life-threatening illness shall maintain employment with the University as long as they are able to satisfactorily perform their work and medical evidence indicates their continued employment is not a threat to themselves, students and other employees. The University will assist employees in maintaining employment through reassignment where appropriate.

Consistent with its concern for employees with life-threatening illness, the University strongly encourages such employees to utilize the following services offered through the Coordinator of the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program, 831-2414.

For the Employee:

  1. Individual confidential counseling regarding job security, health leave and other benefits.

  2. Referral to agencies and organizations which offer supportive services for life-threatening illnesses.

For the University Community:

  1. Educational workshops regarding life-threatening illnesses including HIV infection, AIDS and ARC as they pertain to the workplace, including workshops on an individual unit-by-unit basis.

  2. Referral to established public and private agencies which offer information and supportive services.

Discussion Guidelines

When discussing the "Guidelines for Assisting Employees with Life-threatening Illnesses" with employees, the following points should also be mentioned:

  1. Confidentiality: Under no circumstances should University employees spread rumors alleging that an individual has any disease or illness, including AIDS. All such rumors and/or questions should be directed to the Coordinator of the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program Extension 2414. If rumors develop, employees are responsible to inform their supervisors, who will provide assistance in finding ways to reasonably manage such rumors.

  2. Work-related Concerns: Employees who have questions regarding the safety of their work environment in relationship to communicable diseases should refer those questions to their supervisor. If the supervisor is unable to answer the questions, the employee and/or the supervisor should contact the Coordinator of the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program, 831-2414, or the Department of Occupational Health and Safety, 831-8475.

  3. Casual Contact: Current research indicates that AIDS is not passed through casual contact. Using basic safety precautions and good health practices should protect any individual from infection while working in campus facilities.

Submitted by: Labor Relations