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Privacy Act System of Records: Employee Counseling and Assistance Program Records, EPA-27

[excerpted from: Federal Register: February 22, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 36)]

System Name: Employee Counseling and Assistance Program Records.

System Location: Career Resource & Counseling Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460. EPA offers counseling services to employees at regional offices through a national agreement with the Public Health Service. See the appendix for addresses of regional and other offices.

Categories of Individuals Covered by the System: EPA employees who seek, are referred to, and/or receive assistance through the Agency Employee Counseling and Assistance Program in connection with personal or work related problems, including, but not limited to, problems related to alcohol and/or drug abuse.

Categories of Records in the System: Records of employees who have been counseled or otherwise assisted. Information which may be found in this record system includes the employee's name, location within the Agency, sex, age, race, office telephone number, grade, job title and series; problem assessment, recommended treatment, referral source and client status; notes about counseling sessions made by the counselor; copies of admonishments and reprimands received by the employee; copies of performance appraisals received by the employee; copies of performance appraisals; and documentation of treatment from therapists, physicians, rehabilitation treatment centers and other outside private or community resources.

Authority for Maintenance of the System (includes any revisions or amendments): 42 U.S.C. 290dd-1, 290ee-1; 5 U.S.C. 7901; Executive Order 12564 (Sept. 15, 1986).

Purpose(s): To counsel EPA employees who are experiencing personal or work related problems, including alcohol and drug abuse problems, which may affect their work performance; to document the nature of the employee's problem and the progress made, to record an employee's participation in and the results of community or private sector treatment or rehabilitation programs, and, with the employee's consent, to coordinate with appropriate supervisory or management officials concerning the progress of the employee's rehabilitation; to conduct scientific research, management and financial audits and program evaluations, but individual employees shall not be identified in any resulting reports, audits, or evaluations nor their identities further disclosed in any manner.

Routine Uses of Records Maintained in the System, Including Categories of Users, and the Purposes of Such Uses: General routine uses F and H apply to this system. Disclosure of records pertaining to an employee's alcohol or drug abuse is restricted under the provision of the Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records regulations, 42 CFR part 2.

Policies and Practices For Storing, Retrieving, Accessing, Retaining, and Disposing of Records in the System:

  • Storage: Paper files.

  • Retrievability: By the names of the client employees and by client numbers cross-indexed by names.

  • Safeguards: Computer records are maintained in a secure, password protected computer system. Paper records are maintained in lockable file cabinets. All records are maintained in secure, access-controlled areas or buildings.

  • Retention and Disposal: ECAP records are retained until three years after termination of counseling or until the individual leaves the EPA and are then destroyed.

System Manager(s) and Address: Director, Career Resource and Counseling Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460.

Notice Procedures: Any individual who wants to know whether this system of records contains a record about him or her, who wants access to his or her record, or who wants to contest the contents of a record, should make a written request to the System Manager.

Access Procedure: Requesters will be required to provide adequate identification, such as a driver's license, employee identification card, or other identifying document. Additional identification procedures may be required in some instances.

Contesting Procedure: Requests for correction or amendment must identify the record to be changed and the corrective action sought. Complete EPA Privacy Act procedures are set out in 40 CFR Part 16.

Record Source Categories: Record subjects, a record subject's family, sources to whom a record subject has been referred for assistance, supervisors and other EPA officials, agency health unit, and ECAP counselors.

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