Great idea, Bad execution!
It wasn’t always like that, this is one unit that could hurt or help and from my last experience with them, they didn’t hurt but they didn’t help either. This is one unit that I can safely say is not very useful if they’re giving advice on how to solve a personal problem that is affecting your job.
Reason for my thinking: They work for DSNY!
My advice is if you are having personal problems affecting the job, seek professional help first then pay EAU a visit.
For example: Having a substance, alcohol or relationship problem are big problems that require you to get real help and going to them first is going to generate a report that some eyes won’t be as sympathetic to your problem as a professional might be . I know you say its confidential but depending on your situation you might open a case that other people will have to know your situation and they might make matters worst if they don’t like you or they’re not as sympathetic to your situation as you might think.
What to expect example: Having a marriage problem, you most likely will receive a list of participating Psychologist, Psychotherapist or Marriage Counselors from your medical plan, which you can find by yourself and avoid the visit to EAU.
If you think you will be saved by EAU in not getting a complaint if you miss a day(s) for your problem, forget about it, its not guarantee that will happen, again it depends on the people that you work for. If you are trying to save your job, think twice about going here, because they could make matters worst, GET PROFESSIONAL HELP FIRST!
Now I could only speak from my experience, I have been to EAU over the years and it wasn’t always like this, but something happen between the years while I was there as a client and the last visit was not pretty.
Things you can do.
I could be wrong, but you can report to EAU instead of reporting to your assigned location (only on your first visit), and you will be credited for the day, instead of you going on your day off (check this option with your shop steward).
If you have to go to EAU, ask for a civilian counselor(not uniform worker) that works there.
If you feel the counselor is not of any use, ask for another counselor for assistance.
The idea is to get help and EAU should not be your first choice, all they’re going to do is send you to professional help and that’s basically all they can do and probably what you need.