|WELFARE BENEFIT IMPROVEMENTS DECLARED FOR ACTIVE MEMBERS|
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
I have some exciting news to share that will help us get through these difficult times. Over the past week our leadership team has been working hard on your behalf to negotiate Welfare Fund improvements that will benefit our active members and their families during the COVID-19 crisis. I’m proud to say our efforts have paid off. The Trustees of the Benefit Study Committee have approved a robust improvement package to aid our Welfare Fund Plan participants, the details of which are below. The Coronavirus pandemic has been extremely taxing on everyone, but I want you to know your union stands behind you and will always have your back. Strong alone, unstoppable together.
IMPROVEMENTS TO WELFARE BENEFITS:
– Extension of eligibility under the Active Eligibility Requirements. If a participant is eligible for the March coverage quarter and will lose eligibility in the following quarter due to a reduction of hours, eligibility coverage will automatically be extended for the June through August 2020 coverage quarter.
– Temporary reduction in hours requirement for the 4-quarter eligibility look back period. Effective with the June 1 coverage quarter, the 4-quarter look back period hours requirement is reduced from 1,000 to 750 hours. For Apprentices, the 4-quarter eligibility look back period is reduced from 760 hours to 500 hours. This will remain in effect through the coverage quarter ending November 30, 2020. – Temporary 25% reduction in COBRA and Low-cost premiums for the coverage months of April through August 2020.
– Expand the definition of Non-Occupational Illness under the Short-term Disability Benefits to include COVID-19.
– 100% coverage for COVID-19 testing, office visits, ER and urgent care visits relating to COVID-19.
– 100% coverage for telehealth and virtual office visits (medical and behavioral health).
– 100% in-network hospitalization coverage for individuals receiving in-patient treatment for COVID