Work-Life Services Home Page
Work-Life Services (WLS) are five 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, Worksite Child Care Centers, Flex Spending Account, NYS-Ride, and Pre-Retirement Planning.
EAP: Improving Your Finances
Here are some simple ways to improve your financial situation:
- Set financial goals (paying off debt, saving for a vacation). When it comes to having more money, it is not always about earning more of it, but controlling your expenses.
- Keep track of all of your income and expenses for a month, including all fixed expenses (rent, mortgage, utilities, etc.) and variable expenses (food, clothing, fuel, etc.). This can help you create a budget. Create and Manage a Budget
- Controlling discretionary spending is where you can find more money in your monthly budget. A way to reduce your daily expenses is by using a cash only system or envelopes for each expense category (food, entertainment, and clothing). This way you will only spend what you have in your possession. 101 Ways to Save Money
- If debt payments are more than you can manage and you don't have the money to pay for your ongoing debt obligations, a free credit counseling service may be able to help you. National Foundation for Credit Counseling
- There are free apps and websites to assist with making a realistic budget and to help you meet your financial goals. Mint.com Household Budget Worksheet
If you need assistance with managing your finances, contact your NYS agency EAP coordinator Coordinator List or call 800-822-0244.
National Highway Traffic Administration
Their mission is to save lives, prevent injuries, and reduce economic costs due to road traffic and crashes, through education, research, safety standards, and enforcement. Their website includes information regarding: car ratings, recalls, risky driving, road safety, technology and innovation and other articles on trending topics. Go to: https://www.nhtsa.gov
Empire State's Great Outdoors
New York's 118 State campgrounds offer the perfect spot for a family getaway or reconnecting with friends. Located among some of the most breathtaking settings in North America, NYS campgrounds are the destination of choice for campers seeking variety, value, and a place to create special memories that will last a lifetime. Choose from a full range of tent or trailer sites, cabins and cottages to suit every taste. Many properties include trails, swimming, paddling, nature programs, and other activities. The Camping Guide lists campgrounds by region, along with costs and reservation procedures.
Fun at NYS Worksite Center School-Age Summer Camps
Are you looking for a summer camp for your school-age child? Did you know that many of the NYS Worksite Child Care Centers offer summer camp for school-age children? All of the worksite summer camps are conveniently located within, or in close proximity to the child care centers at various state sites. All the summer camps offer weekly themes to ensure your child will be entertained while gaining knowledge on a variety of topics in a caring environment.
A complete list of NYS Worksite Child Care Centers can be found at: https://www.worklife.ny.gov/childcare/Worksite-Child-Care-Center-Flyer-2016-11-01.pdf
Enroll in the DCAAccount
Great news for state employees! If in order for you and your spouse (if you are married) to be able to work, you plan to send your child under the age of 13, to summer day camp, a Change in Care Provider (including summer day camp) is an eligible Change in Status event that allows you to enroll in the Dependent Care Advantage Account (DCAAcount) for the remainder of 2017. Also, the Employer Contribution is available to eligible employees who enroll in the DCAAccount to help pay for summer day camp expenses. Please visit www.flexspend.ny.gov or call (800) 358-7202 for more information, Employer Contribution rates, or to enroll.
WellNYS Everyday is a Work-Life Services/Employee Assistance Program wellness initiative dedicated to educating, engaging, and empowering New York State employees and their families by encouraging participation in healthy behaviors. Every morning, a new WellNYS Tip of the Day, which can be emailed to employees and family members, is posted to the website. The tip provides creative suggestions, interesting facts, or inspiring quotes on the current Monthly Challenge. Click on the following website to learn more about the program. www.worklife.ny.gov/wellNYSeveryday
Retirement Planning Videos
A series of short videos — the Planning Your Successful Retirement Video Guide — highlighting key information from the popular DIRECTIONS: Pre-Retirement Planning Seminars is 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 www.youtube.com/user/GOERWebServices.
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: email@example.com.
"Parenthood, it's not a job. It's an adventure" – author unknown
The Employer Contribution is Available for the 2017 Plan Year
The Dependent Care Advantage Account (DCAAccount) Employer Contribution is available for the 2017 plan year. Executive Branch state agency employees who are M/C or represented by CSEA, PEF, UUP, Council 82, DC-37, GSEU, NYSCOPBA, or are employed by the Legislature are eligible for the DCAAccount Employer Contribution. Employees of Roswell Park Cancer Institute, ERDA, and EFC are also eligible for the Employer Contribution. Visit www.flexspend.ny.gov for complete details and Employer Contribution Rates.
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 training for a minimum of 20 employees, you may contact the DIRECTIONS Seminar Program Manager at Beth.Brumaghim@goer.ny.gov or 518.473.4018.
2017 Flex Spending Account Changes in Status and New Employees
The FSA 2017 open enrollment period ended on November 7, 2016. Employees who experience a valid change in status on or after November 8, 2016 or during the 2017 plan year, may be eligible to enroll by submitting a Change in Status application. Visit www.flexspend.ny.gov to review the 2017 Change in Status information to determine if your situation qualifies you to enroll during the plan year.
NYS-Ride allows eligible state employees to pay up to $255 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 saving 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 www.nysride.com