DC 37 BLACK HISTORY MONTH OPENS VIRTUALLY TONIGHT, FEBRUARY 1, at 6 PM
Celebrate Black excellence virtually this February with the DC 37 Black History Committee. This year’s theme is “Educating our Heritage, While Empowering a Healthier Generation.” Opening Night is Tuesday Feb. 1 at 6 PM, and Local 1930 is the sponsor.
“Celebrating as We Rise,” is Local 371‘s theme for its virtual Black History event on Feb. 4. Music starts at 5 PM and the program begins at 6 PM. Visit www.mightyunion.org for the link and event details.
Additionally, check the DC 37 online calendar for details on upcoming virtual events:
* Local 1407 will host a Black History event on Feb. 15 at 6 PM.
* DC 37 Retirees Association Black History event on Feb. 16, 1 to 3 PM.
* Local 372 will host an online celebration on Feb. 25 at 6 PM.
* Local 1930 will host a midday Black History celebration on Feb. 26 at 12 noon on Zoom, Meeting ID: 843 3077 4111 Passcode 355632.
* Finale Night, sponsored by Local 1930 and the DC37 Black History Committee, celebrates Black excellence on Monday, Feb. 28 at 6 PM.
Join the Opening Night, and Finale Night virtual events via Zoom. Meeting ID: 832 2260 1180 Passcode: 165808
One tap mobile +16468769923,,83222601180#,,,,*165808# US (New York)
For more information on DC 37 Black History Month events, please see the monthly union calendar at www.dc37.net.
DISCOUNT TICKETS to MANDELA
Celebrate Black History Month at the theater with a live viewing of Mandela, a play written by Local 768 member Yolanda Brooks and John Ruiz Miranda. Use the exclusive DC 37 code JUST4U when you buy one ticket and get a second ticket free. That’s two tickets for the price of one! This offer is available to DC 37 members, students, seniors and church groups for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday performances only. Mandela runs Feb. 8 through 27, at the American Theater of Actors, 314 West 54th St., New York, NY 10019. For tickets call 646-623-8083 or visit: mandelanyc.com. Use code: JUST4U.
DC 37 DISABILITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE, FEB. 8
Join the DC 37 Disability Advisory Committee for a virtual workshop on Feb. 8 at 6 PM. Health experts will discuss The Effects of COVID-19 on Your Mental Health. Join via Ring Central from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://meetings.ringcentral.com/j/1499496793 Or iPhone one-tap: US: +1(646)3573664,,1499496793#. For more information, please email Committee Chair Laura Morand at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DC 37 CLIMATE JUSTICE COMMITTEE
The DC 37 Climate Justice Committee meets the first and third Tuesday of every month. To join, please email Committee Chair Jon Forster at: email@example.com.
FOOD BANK for NYC OFFERS FREE TAX PREP
Food Bank for NYC offers free, contactless tax preparation services for low-income New Yorkers. Get the refunds and credits you may be entitled to, including the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) that can be worth up to $8,852 for some families. Free tax prep is available at: https://www.foodbanknyc.org/taxhelp/. Call 646-981-6111, Monday through Friday, 10 AM to 4 PM, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The IRS will accept 2021 tax returns starting on Jan. 31. The deadline to file is April 18, 2022.
DC 37 DENTAL CENTER
The newly renovated, state-of-the-art DC 37 Dental Center is a 30-chair facility at 115 Chambers Street in Lower Manhattan. They are accepting appointments Monday to Friday, 8 AM to 6 PM and Saturday, 8 AM to 5 PM. To schedule your visit, please call 212-766-4440.
MEDICARE ADVANTAGE PLUS PLAN for NYC RETIREES
The Municipal Labor Committee has voted to move to a Medicare Advantage Plus Plan designed specifically for our NYC retirees. The plan goes into effect April 1, 2022. All retirees in Senior Care will remain in Senior Care until April 1, with no monthly premium payment or deduction. The opt-out date of the NYC Medicare Advantage Plus Plan has been extended to June 30, 2022. For more information, call 833-325-1190.
MSK LUNG HEALTH SCREENING IS EASY
Lung cancer is the #1 cause of cancer-related deaths in men and women in the United States. Learning the risk factors associated with developing lung cancer, such as smoking history, age, family history, and exposure to toxic substances, can help lower fear and uncertainty commonly associated with this disease. MSK Direct has partnered with DC 37 to provide resources on DC 37’s dedicated MSK Direct webpage. MSK Direct provides DC 37 members and their families dedicated access to exceptional cancer care from leading specialists at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). If you or a family member are impacted by cancer and would like to discuss treatment options, call MSK Direct at 883-786-3365 or visit DC 37’s dedicated webpage.
MELS COVID-19 UPDATE:
New York State Homeowners Assistance Fund – Up to $50,000 Available for Distressed Home, Coop and Condo Owners
Homeowners at risk of foreclosure or displacement due to a financial hardship suffered as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic may be eligible for up to $50,000.00 through the New York State Homeowner Assistance Fund. Applications open as of January 3, 2022.
To qualify you must be:
- Residing in the home, coop or condo; and
- Behind on mortgage payments; or
- Behind on coop maintenance charges or condo HOA fees; or
- Behind on property taxes, water or sewer bills; or
- In default on a reverse mortgage; or
- In forbearance
Homeowner Assistance Funds can be used to:
- Pay off past due mortgage payments; or
- Partially pay down the principal mortgage amount in order to make monthly mortgage payments more affordable; or
- Pay off past due coop maintenance charges or condo HOA fees; or
- Pay off past due property taxes, sewage or water bills; or
- Pay future housing payments for up to six months if the applicant or an adult member of the household is currently unemployed or has exhausted unemployment benefits.
There are income and other eligibility requirements. To apply and get more information, visit: New York State Homeowner Assistance Fund or call 844-77-NYHAF or 844-776-9423.
If you own a home, coop or condo and are in need of legal assistance or help navigating the Homeowner Assistance Program, please call the MELS Screening Unit at 212-815-1111.
STUDENT LOAN FORBEARANCE EXTENSION UPDATE
On Wednesday, December 22, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education announced a further extension of the CARES Act student loan forbearance. Last scheduled to terminate on January 31, 2022, the pause on student loan payments, interest accrual and collections is extended through May 1, 2022. To request to speak with a MELS attorney, please call the MELS Screening Unit at 212-815-1111.
STUDENT LOAN FORBEARANCE
To take advantage of the temporary waiver (see below), otherwise qualified borrowers with indirect student loans, or borrowers who simply have a history of repayment on non-qualifying plans, must consolidate their indirect loans; select an income driven repayment plan, and submitted the PSLF Employer Certification form by October 31, 2022. Doing so will allow the borrower to receive credit for payments made on any plan.
Whether your loan is in default, you need assistance in qualifying for PSLF, you wish to learn how switching to an income driven repayment plan will affect your cost, or you just want help understanding student loans, MELS can help. To connect with a MELS attorney call the MELS Screening Unit at 212-815-1111. MELS can help!
PUBLIC SERVICE LOAN FORGIVENESS TEMPORARY WAIVER
On October 6, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education temporarily waived a number of the requirements borrowers who qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) must meet. The waiver period expires on October 31, 2022. Appropriate steps must be taken prior to that date in order to take advantage of the benefits of the waiver.
WAIVER of the QUALIFYING REPAYMENT PLAN OPTIONS
Under the traditional rules, to qualify for PSLF a borrower working full-time in a qualified employment was required to make 120 payments toward their direct federal student loan debt pursuant to one of the four income driven repayment plan options: PAYE, RE-PAYE, Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment. The repayment plan requirement is temporarily waived. During the waiver period, payments made on any plan will count toward PSLF.
BORROWERS with FFEL and PERKINS LOANS
Borrowers with FFEL and Perkins loans now have an improved pathway to PSLF. Under the traditional rules, only direct federal student loans qualified for PSLF. Borrowers with FFEL loans and Perkins loans had to consolidate into a direct consolidated federal loan in order to qualify for PSLF. Payments made prior to consolidation did not count toward PSLF. During the waiver period, borrowers must still consolidate. However, provided a borrower consolidates during the waiver period, payments made prior to consolidation, on any repayment plan, will count toward PSLF. For information on the appropriate steps to take, affected members and their eligible family members can call MELS at 212.815.1111.
PAID FAMILY LEAVE BENEFIT
The New York State Paid Family Leave benefit is 12 weeks. The maximum weekly paid benefit is $971.61 or $1,943 bi-weekly. This union-negotiated benefit is available to nearly all DC 37 members, including members in the six nonprofit and private sector locals. For details about the PFL benefit, please contact your union representative. To access the 2022 PFL benefits calculator, visit: https://paidfamilyleave.ny.gov/PFLbenefitscalculator2022.
AFSCME FREE 4-YEAR COLLEGE
AFSCME offers a free 4-year college program to members and their immediate family. You can go to college for free from anywhere in the country. All you need is a computer and an internet connection. For more information, visit: https://freecollege.afscme.org/
DC 37 EDUCATION FUND
NEW LABOR LEADERSHIP PROGRAM at CUNY
DC 37 and the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies have expanded their educational partnership to include four new college-level programs in labor studies. The DC 37 Education Fund will provide tuition assistance to active DC 37 members who enroll in the labor studies program to earn the undergraduate certificate in labor relations; bachelor’s degree in urban studies; graduate certificate in labor relations, or master’s degree in labor studies. Apply today here: www.dc37edfund.org/cunyslu. For more information, please call: 212-815-1700.
DC 37 ED FUND’s FREE WORKSHOPS FOR NONPROFIT LOCALS
The Ed Fund is offering Cooks in our Daycare and Head Start programs a refresher Food Handling Safety Workshop on Feb. 2, from 1 to 3 PM. Test prep workshops for teacher certification exams begin this month for members of nonprofit locals. Test prep workshops for Assistant Teachers begin in February. Register here.
DC 37 ED FUND’s FREE SOCIAL WORKER WORKSHOPS FOR LOCAL 768 MEMBERS
The DC 37 Education Fund and the New York City Chapter will host two (2) continuing education workshops online In February for eligible Local 768 licensed Social Workers:
Abusive Traumatic Bonding in Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) (4 CEU’s) on Saturday, Feb. 12, from 10 AM to 2 PM. Registration is closed.
Immigration, Racism, Pandemic: Policy and Practice Implications (2 CEU’s) on Thursday, Feb. 24, from 7 to 9 PM. The registration deadline is Tuesday, Feb. 1.
LOCAL 372 PARAPROFESSIONALS can earn 18 credits annually towards a degree in Human Services through a partnership with Monroe College. To enroll for the Spring 2022 term, email: email@example.com.
LOCAL 372 MEMBERS WORKING in SCHOOL FOOD can earn an Associate Degree in Nutrition and Culinary Management through a partnership with LaGuardia Community College. To enroll for the Spring 2022 term, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
CUNY COUNSELING IS HERE FOR YOU! This is the ideal time to plan for Spring 2022 enrollment at the CUNY college of your choice. Let Worker Education at the CUNY School of Labor & Urban Studies (SLU) help guide you through the process of finding the best CUNY program to match your education and career goals. Expert advisors offer FREE one-on-one phone sessions on: academic requirements for specific jobs; choosing a CUNY campus and major; applying to and financing a CUNY degree; certificate and non-credit options at CUNY, transferring previous credits, and more. Each session is free and catered to your specific goals and needs. To view the calendar and schedule your CUNY advisement session visit: https://cunydays.eventbrite.com. Can’t find a date/time that works for you? Email: WorkerEd@slu.cuny.edu.
EDUCATION AND CAREER COUNSELING: Do you need guidance selecting a class from our offerings, updating a resume or need assistance reaching a career or educational goal? Contact a counselor to schedule a virtual appointment: https://www.dc37.net/benefits/education/offerings/counseling.
TEST PREP WORKSHOPS: DC 37 members can get help to prepare them for upcoming civil service exams through online Ed Fund workshops. Members can select from one or more subject areas: Reading, English Language Arts and Math. Each workshop is six sessions long. These classes will provide essential knowledge of the test subject(s) and test-taking strategies. Although the workshops do not address a specific exam, the essential learning is beneficial and can help alleviate testing anxieties. Apply here: https://www.dc37.net/benefits/education/offerings/testprep.
RETIREES EDUCATION COURSES: Apply now for online classes here or go to the website if you prefer to print and mail the application to the address indicated. For more information, email Manuel Gomez-Rosa: email@example.com or call 212-815-1700.
Art is Life – The Future is Inclusive
WorkWell NYC is excited to announce the 2022 Art is Life exhibit – “The Future is Inclusive.”
NYC employees can share their artistic vision for a more diverse, inclusive, equitable, and accessible future. It is our hope that the art submitted will foster positive dialogue about how we can create a more inclusive future together.
Submitted art will be featured in a virtual gallery and select pieces will be presented this spring at the first ever NYC Employee Art Show. Submissions will be accepted through Feb. 11.
For more information, visit: on.nyc.gov/artislife.
Mindful Journaling for Self-Love, Feb. 16 at 12 PM Journaling is a powerful tool to manage stress, reduce anxiety, and improve mood. Join this workshop to learn journaling exercises and techniques that will improve your confidence and self-esteem, and help you develop a daily journaling practice. Register here.
Create Art with Your Heart, Paint and Sip on Feb. 25 at 6:30 PM Unwind after the work week by exploring your artistic side from home and creating your very own masterpiece. Guided by an instructor, learn how to paint a beautiful sunset while you chat with fellow colleagues. Register here.
To see the full list of WorkWell NYC events, visit: on.nyc.gov/upcomingevents.