What assistance is available to Parliamentary Staff/Members with substance abusive issues?
The request was partially successful.
From: John Gray
Dear Parliamentary Service,
I understand that the Service is not covered under the OIA 1982,
found under s2(1). However, it is my hope that you will still be
able to provide the below information as you have done so in the
past in both my personal and public requests. The Service is held
in high regard amongst those who use this site for co-operating in
requests for information, promptly.
In light of a parliamentary member's behavior & subsequent ejection from the debating chamber today during Question Time (11.05.2016) I have become concerned that a high ranking official in our Government may be suffering from addiction issues, namely, alcoholism.
Making reference to the Intoxication Assessment Tool found on a subsidiary website of the Crown Entity, Health Promotion Agency, alcohol.org.nz (http://alcohol.org.nz/resources/intoxica...)
The Intoxication Assessment Tool lists some example indicators of intoxication which I believe were displayed by the member today, namely;
Speech indicators of intoxication: Slurring, nonsensical, unintelligible.
Appearance indicators of intoxication: inability to focus, dishevelled
Behavior indicators of intoxication: Seriously inappropriate actions or
language, aggressive, rude, belligerent, obnoxious behaviour affecting other members
The indicators shown by the member today were not unique to today's Question Time and are behavior's that have been consistently displayed over a long period of time.
It is particularly troubling that the member was displaying these behaviors while in a place of business during daylight hours while on the national stage showing a blatant disregard for their own well-being.
Alcoholism is a battle fought by many across our country and I feel strongly that help should be provided where ever possible to help people overcome their demons.
My questions are:
1) What assistance is available to Parliamentary Staff, including Members of Parliament, to help them overcome their substance abusive?
2) Is there a method for ensuring that the staff member get's the help they need?
I understand this request may come across as a bad joke, but I would like to reiterate that alcoholism is a serious disease and that I couldn't live with myself if I just stood by idly watching someone destroy their own heath & well being, and that perhaps they were unaware of the assistance available to them.
From: David Stevenson
Parliamentary Service staff are offered an Employee Assistance Programme, which provides independent advice and assistance.