Employee Assistance Program offers free counseling

Article and photo by Jeannie Briones

TULALIP, Washington- We live in a fast paced world that is growing by the minute. Our environment is hectic and stressful at times, which can make it overwhelming to manage a harmonious life. The increased pressure of balancing a career, family and other factors are burdensome and when life throws unexpected events, like a death in a family, it builds more pressure, making it harder to properly deal with grief and loss.

There are counselors available through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) at the Tulalip Administration Building to all Tulalip Tribal Government employees that are having issues and need guidance.

“The primary goal and objective for EAP is to help employees resolve personal or work related problems. The goal of the EAP is to help employees with a wide range of issues that could be anything from depression, stress, anxiety, addictions, anger, marital or relationship issues, parenting issues, grief or loss, or coping with change during different life transitions,” said Lisa Kibbee-Hacker, EAP Manager.

EAP is a customized help based on the employees’ individual needs. Employees can take advantage of workshop classes that cover subjects such as effective communication skills, addressing workplace bullying, and group-managing grief and loss in the workplace. Another component to this program is that staff provides support to managers and supervisros, and facilitates mediation meetings between the employee and manager.

“If employees are having work issues, we provide referrals if there is nothing we can do,” said Jessica Talevich, EAP Counselor. “I am an art therapist. Art therapy oriented EAP is a pretty unique thing. EAP professionals who use art-making as a component in their counseling are pretty rare.”

Overall EAP is beneficial for mental health and well-being. EAP professionals provide individual assessment to work on short term problem-solving goals.

“We give them the tools to have self-empowerment and to make change,” said Lisa.

Lisa believes EAP is effective in helping people and enjoys seeing employees have a much more positive outlook.

“You see the transition from the beginning and to the final sessions; this is why we do this work,” said Lisa.

This service is at no cost to employees. Contact EAP counselor Jessica Talevich at 360-716-4488 or email jtalevich@tulaliptribes-nsn.gov, if you are interested in setting up an appointment. If you are interested in up-coming workshops, contact EAP Manager, Lisa Kibbee-Hacker at 360-716-4150 or email lisak@tulalipresort.com.


Jeannie Briones: 360-716-4188; jbriones@tulaliptribes-nsn.gov