Business & Industrial Chaplains
Making Workplaces Better Places To Work
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About Workplace Chaplains

What Is A Chaplain?
A chaplain is an ordained clergy-person who is equipped by training and experience to offer pastoral counseling, support, encouragement and resource referrals to people outside of the typical religious setting. He or she sees their work as representing G-d's care and concern for all people as they are, regardless of their religious affiliation. Chaplains do not attempt to substitute for more traditional means of worship and pastoral care, such as that provided by churches and synagogues.

The United States military has used chaplains on the battlefield, in hospitals and at bases throughout the world for over 150 years, where they provide invaluable service to soldiers and their families.
What Is A Workplace Chaplain?
In every business and industrial facility, in all types industries, people have to deal with tough issues. Issues of stress, marital and family strife, substance abuse, loneliness, financial concerns, disappointment, anger, illness and anxiety follow people to work and are frequently intensified by the changing circumstances in the workplace, such as layoffs, restructurings, staff changes and altered employee relationships.

Workplace Chaplains serve both large or small businesses in all types of industries, offering confidential, interdenominational, ecumenical pastoral counseling to individuals who are dealing with personal or professional challenges. Although Workplace Chaplains may be trained in a specific denomination, they are trained to work with individuals from all religious denominations. They provide counseling for things like individual and family issues, worksite concerns, job stress and career changes.

Theirs is a preventive, problem-solving service, available to all people regardless of their individual religious affiliation. Workplace Chaplains try to be as aware of what is occuring in their communities and the services available there as they can: they are often relied upon to provide referrals to social and community services to employees who need help for immediate, pressing problems.
How Does A Workplace Chaplain Do Their Job?
Workplace Chaplains offer what has been called a "ministry of presence," quietly working behind the scenes, being there for employees when they need them. They lend a listening ear, a supportive and caring presence, individual attention and effective referrals to those who need additional support.

Specially trained to work in secular business and industrial environments, they work without vestments or robes, and dress just like other employees at a company. A typical day for a Workplace Chaplain involves walking through a plant or office, visiting with employees at their workstations on a regular basis, establishing a rapport with workers and making them aware that counseling is available at any time, especially during emergencies.

Their rapport with employees is especially helpful in times when an employee or family member is sick or hospitalized or is grieving the loss of a loved one. A Workplace Chaplain does not usually perform weddings, baptisms, funeral services and other lifecycle ceremonies. However, if an employee feels closer to a Workplace Chaplain than any other clergy member and no other clergy is available, a Workplace Chaplain may be called on to perform lifecycle ceremonies for an employee. Many Workplace Chaplains are also on-call 24-hours-a-day to meet employee needs off-site after the business day is over.

In many companies, Workplace Chaplains are considered an extension of the company's employee assistance program (EAP), offering a spiritual face to traditional EAP programs.
The Chaplain: An Ideal Industrial Ombudsman
It's not unusual to find a workplace chaplain acting in the capacity of an industrial ombudsman. In this role, the chaplain is a designated neutral person who provides confidential and informal assistance in resolving concerns and disagreements within the employee population. As an ombudsman, the chaplain will investigate complaints, report findings, and mediate fair settlements, especially between individuals or group of individuals, or between different areas of the organization. As an independent, impartial, and confidential party, a chaplain ombudsman serves as an alternative means of dispute resolution by which issues may be raised, considered, given appropriate referral, and/or resolved.
What Workplace Chaplains Don't Do
Workplace Chaplains do not promote their denomination. They don't preach sermons. They are not a labor tool to be used by management to manipulate employees. Nor do they compete with community services or agencies. While Workplace Chaplains do not go into the workplace to preach or proselytize, if a worker asks a theological question, they can answer it from their religious perspective.
Do Many Companies Use Workplace Chaplains Today?
Yes. As of September 2009, approximately 2 million employees have access to Workplace Chaplains. A growing number of companies in the United States and worldwide, both private and publicly-held, have contracted with Workplace Chaplains to provide counseling to employees and their family members. In the new millenium, company requests for Workplace Chaplains has exceeded their availability.

Three recent examples of companies which offer the services of Workplace Chaplains to their employees include Georgia's Allied Holdings, a trucking company, which has offered the services of Workplace Chaplains since the mid-60's. They employ 77 part-time chaplains. at 97 locations in 35 states and 9 Canadian provinces. Tyson Foods also employs 52 part-time Workplace Chaplains serving in 39 plants. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. employs several dozen Workplace Chaplains at its plants in the United States.
What About the Business Results?
Companies report positive ROI's as a result of including the services of Workplace Chaplains onsite. Typical comments from business executives are something like "This was the best business decision I ever made" and "This is the only benefit that employees have ever thanked me for."

Most companies who contract with Workplace Chaplains report significant improvement in the areas of employee retention and morale. Austaco, a large Pizza Hut and Taco Bell franchisee corporation, reported that as a result of its Workplace Chaplaincy program, it was able to reduce annual employee turnover from 300% to 125%. The trucking industry's Allied Holdings reported that, in an industry where annual driver turnover usually runs at nearly 100%, it was able to substantially lower driver turnover to around 4%, largely as a result of its Workplace Chaplaincy program.
Does The Law Permit Workplace Chaplains?
Yes. In the United States, employers are permitted to offer faith-based services to employees, provided that they do so without discrimination and without creating an environment where employees feel pressured to conform to a particular faith. In practice, for example, this means that companies may employ Workplace Chaplains and may even have prayer or Bible-study sessions, as long as they are voluntary and those who don't attend are not discriminated against. Employees must not feel that the terms and conditions of their employment are in any way contingent upon their religious beliefs.
What Does A Workplace Chaplain Cost?
There are no fees for our services; support is provided by our faith communities.
Who Can Receive Your Services?
Our programs are open to all employees, regardless of religious, ethnic or cultural background.
Where Are Your Services Rendered?
Services are usually provided onsite at the workplace, although appointments can be made to see a chaplain outside of the workplace and after hours.
Who Are Your Chaplains?
Business & Industrial Chaplains™ chaplains are ordained professional clergy who have been specially trained for ministries outside of traditional religious settings.

Our chaplains have been associated with either military, institutional, corporate or industrial fields and have been providing spiritual support and counsel to employees and others working within such contexts for over 20 years.

Trained to work with people of all cultural and religious backgrounds, the denomination of our chaplains' ordinations makes absolutely no difference when it comes to their ability to offer comfort, resources and support to employees.
How Long Have You Been Around?
Business & Industrial Chaplains™ have been in existence since late 2010. The initiative was conceived by several local chaplains in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

They had seen the positive effects of such ministries on the employees of business and industrial concerns in the South and Southwest United States and wanted to bring the same type of positive energy to New England.

Although business and industrial ministries are common in the South and Southwest, very few chaplaincies of this type exist in the Northeast, where the concept of Workplace Chaplaincy is almost unheard of.

Our chaplains have been contacting firms in the Hartford area for the past several months, explaining the concept of Workplace Chaplaincy to the management of area companies.

Although many firms at first express skepticism about the concept, in a majority of cases we have been able to overcome doubts and achieve management buy-in, supported by positive evidence from the trial Workplace Chaplaincy efforts.
Where Do I Go to Find More Information?
We invite you to contact us at our office regarding your specific situation and to find out what our Workplace Chaplaincy program can do for your company. Your information will be kept absolutely confidential. We do not sell or loan out your information to anyone.

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Business & Industrial Chaplains™
121 Shield Street St. #1771
West Hartford, Connecticut 06110 USA
Emergencies & Routine Calls: (860) 306-0038

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Business & Industrial Chaplains™ is an initiative of
The Esnoga Chevrat Or LaOlam
A 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization