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Retirement Planning Tip

October 2014 - If I go outside the United States, will I still receive my Social Security check?

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Did You Know…

NYS-Balance can help you locate adaptive equipment for an older loved one to make life easier for them.

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NYS-Balance Monthly Feature

NYS-Balance Monthly Webinars

Identifying Signs of Addiction in a Loved One
October 16, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Eating Your Way to Wellness
November 20, 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

July – December

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The fast and easy way to find out about many health and human services programs and how to apply for them - anytime and anywhere.


Work-Life Services Home Page

Work-Life Services Brochure

Work–Life Services (WLS) are six negotiated benefits programs for Executive Branch employees resulting from a collaboration between NYS and the public employee unions. These programs are designed to increase employee productivity and morale by improving the quality of work and life for employees and include: Employee Assistance Program, NYS–Balance, Worksite Child Care Centers, Flex Spending Account, NYS–Ride, and Pre–Retirement Planning. To view a short video about WLS benefits click here. 12:11

To view or print the Work-Life Services Brochure click here.

EAP: Domestic Violence – Help is Available.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Domestic violence occurs when one person attempts to maintain power and control over another person in an intimate relationship. Most people think of physical abuse when they think of domestic violence, but it can be sexual, psychological, or economic abuse as well. And, it can happen to anyone.

Every county in New York State has at least one agency specifically designed to provide services for individuals, and their children, affected by domestic violence. These programs offer emergency 24-hour hotlines, information and referrals, education, support groups, advocacy and accompaniment. For resources in your community, contact:

New York State Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-942-6906
(Deaf or Hard of Hearing: 711)

In NYC: 1-800-621-HOPE (4673) or dial 311 (TTY: 1-866-604-5350)

For more information, contact your EAP coordinator.

Enroll in the 2015 Plan Year by November 7, 2014

The 2015 open enrollment period for the Flex Spending Account is October 6 through midnight on November 7, 2014.  Save money by enrolling in the Health Care Spending Account, the Dependent Care Advantage Account, or both.  For additional program information and to enroll, visit or call Fringe Benefits Customer Service at 800-358-7202 (option 1).  Representatives are available from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. daily.  Make sure you have your most recent pay stub available since you will need your NYS Employee ID Number (NYS EMPL ID) Department ID, and Negotiating Unit code to apply.

Need Addiction Help?

The New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) oversees one of the nation’s largest addiction services systems with nearly 1,600 prevention, treatment and recovery programs. OASAS chemical dependence treatment programs assist about 100,000 people a day and approximately 240,000 individuals every year. These programs:

  • Provide accessible, cost-effective quality services
  • Strengthen communities, schools and families through prevention
  • Improve lives through treatment
  • Meet individual needs through specialized services
  • Foster partnerships for improved services
  • Link programs with research to improve results
  • Plan for the future to improve and strengthen prevention and treatment
  • Promote a productive, well-trained workforce
  • Provide hope for happier, productive lives

For more information go to their website at: or call: 877-846-7369


NYS-Ride allows eligible state employees to pay up to $130 per month for certain work-related transportation expenses on a pre-tax basis. More than 8,000 participants who use public transportation to get to work currently enjoy the savings this program provides, while contributing to a greener environment by reducing carbon emissions, greenhouse gasses, and dependence on foreign oil.

The NYS-Ride website provides employees with quick and easy access to all the information they would need to learn about the program, calculate their savings and impact on the environment, enroll in NYS-Ride, make changes to their elections, or view their accounts. Please visit the website at

Retirement Planning Videos

Monitor displaying YouTube video

A series of short videos — the Planning Your Successful Retirement Video Guide — highlighting key information from the popular DIRECTIONS: Pre-Retirement Planning Seminars is now available. Designed for executive branch employees, the 23 videos were created in partnership with the Office of the State Comptroller, the Department of Civil Service, the NYS Deferred Compensation Plan, and the Social Security Administration. Employees can view the videos along with other pre-retirement planning information on this Work-Life Services website and also on YouTube at More

Free NYS–Balance Resource Materials

We are very pleased to offer a wide variety of new, free, resource materials available through the NYS–Balance program. To order materials, go to: After logging in, on the right side of the home page, in the Employee Resources section, click on the Educational Materials tab, complete the form and submit. The materials will be mailed directly to your home.

Retirement Planning Resources Workshops

The Retirement Planning Resources Workshop is a free, one-hour training, available to state agencies for their employees, regardless of years of state service. The training will not cover specific retirement information, and is not a substitute for the full-day DIRECTIONS seminars. Instead, the goal of this training program is to educate executive branch employees about the resources available so they can begin planning their retirement.

If you would like to schedule this one-hour training, you may contact Beth Brumaghim, Seminar Program Manager, at or 518.473.4018.

Welcome to the Family Packet

Work-Life Services introduces the "Welcome to the Family Packet". Parenting is an exciting and challenging experience. Today's parents often face unique circumstances balancing their work and family responsibilities. As a New York State Executive Branch employee parent, you are entitled to several negotiated benefits designed to assist you with balancing work and life. The "Welcome to the Family Packet" will outline these benefits programs as well as provide educational child care and parenting brochures. We invite you to request a "Welcome to the Family Packet" if you are expecting or recently added to your family through the birth or adoption of a child. Email your request along with your name and home address to:

"Parenthood, it's not a job. It's an adventure" – –author unknown

NYS-Balance Testimonials

NYS-Balance makes life less complicated by providing referrals for Child Care and Parenting, Elder Care/Adults with Disabilities, Education, Health and Wellness, Daily Life, and Legal/Financial. Many NYS executive branch employees have used the service and here's what they have to say…

“I was very surprised and impressed by the info provided and have recommended NYS-Balance to others. I was impressed with the amount of detail in the information I requested.”

“I learned a lot following the various webinar/seminars that NYS-Balance gave.”

“I am very surprised by the helpfulness of the staff and the information they provided. I don’t think other state workers know how helpful this benefit is!”

Funding is provided by the negotiated agreements between the State of New York and CSEA, PEF, UUP, GSEU, DC-37, Council 82, and NYSCOPBA, and by the NYS Governor's Office of Employee Relations for employees designated M/C.

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