Friday, January 20, 2006

Making it harder to help

I teach at Cal State, Los Angeles. The University—perhaps the entire CSU system; perhaps even the entire state of California; I just don't know—has a policy whereby employees who have used up their sick leave may use sick leave accrued and donated by other employees. (I have no idea why the University doesn't have a plan for long-term leave in case of catastrophic illness.) It used to be possible to donate sick leave by email. I just received this notice (by email).
Campus Wide e-mail,

I am submitting this request on behalf of … . He has been determined eligible to receive donated sick or vacation time. The University has a program where, if you are able, you can donate your sick or vacation time to help him get through this time of need.

If you would like to donate any sick leave or vacation time you must go to the Payroll Office to complete the catastrophic leave form.

I would like to thank you in advance for your help.
This is the second time I've received a request for donation that requires the person making the contribution to go physically to the Payroll Office. The first time I called the Payroll Offie to ask about this new policy—a personal appearance had not been required in the past—but the Payroll Office person to whom I spoke had no idea why this new rule was put in place. It seems both mean-spirited (because it reduces the number of contributions) and arbitrary. In addition, one would think that in the 21st century, the necessity of such personal appearances would become less not more frequent. Is this another example of a bureaucracy gone wrong, or is there a valid reason for this requirement?

No comments: