MELS Real Estate Webinar Now Online

December 1, 2020 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS The Municipal Employees Legal Services, MELS, held a Real Estate webinar Nov. 30 with hundreds of DC 37 members looking to buy a home, coop apartment or condominium. The webinar is now available online: MELS Real Estate webinar video replay: MELS Real Estate webinar PowerPoint slides: MELS lawyers and housing experts discussed buyers and sellers concerns, retaining and working with a realtor; financing; home inspections, and more. MELS Director Bill Whalen said: “The interest rates on mortages are at record lows and despite the pandemic, working families are moving ahead with plans for home ownership.” “DC 37 members can use MELS lawyers at closings and take advantage of programs for first time buyers and more,” he said. For more information, and to speak to a MELS attorney to help DC 37 members who are [More...]

It’s Time You Get Your High School Equivalency Diploma

October 21, 2020 // 0 Comments

Do you need your High School Equivalency Diploma? You may be eligible for the TASC test waiver due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The test for the High School Equivalency Diploma is now called the TASC Test. The TASC, Test Assessing Secondary Completion, replaces the GED exam. It has five subtests: Reading, Writing,  Science, Social Studies and Mathematics. There are four pathways to get your equivalency diploma: The TASC test Approved 24 college credit program National External Degree Program (NEDP), and The Regents-HSE Examination Pathway The most popular pathway is the TASC test.  If you took and passed at least three subtests on the TASC and/or the GED exam, and/or Regents credits, you are in luck! You may qualify for the COVID-19 TASC test waiver in effect through June 30, 2021. To qualify for the waiver, you must meet the following criteria: Enroll in an adult education preparation [More...]

Fall 2020 DC 37 Education Fund Free Training and Benefits

September 10, 2020 // 0 Comments

The DC 37 Education Fund is offering classes online Fall 2020: DC 37 Education Fund is currently accepting applications for the Fall 2020 cycle online classes. The Ed Fund offers classes on labor, business, the Lillian Roberts Women’s Leadership Academy, and more. For a full list of DC 37 Ed Fund courses and programs and to register, please click on your program of interest. ### Tuition Reimbursement: DC 37’s Ed Fund offers tuition reimbursement for courses towards a degree or professional license from accredited institutions and programs. We have streamlined the application process. Please print the tuition reimbursement application and mail your completed reimbursement application and supporting documents to: DC37 Education Fund Attn: Tuition Refund 75 Broad Street, Suite 2204 New York, NY 10004 ### CUNY Counseling is here for you! Worker Education at the CUNY School of [More...]

The DC 37 Health & Security Plan is Here to Help Members Cope With Stress

August 13, 2020 // 0 Comments

Many people feel Stress in the face of Uncertainty. If these feelings are overwhelming you the Personal Service Unit is here to help. Stress is an inevitable part of life. Stress may be due to personal relationships, the workplace, or life changes. Repeated and prolonged exposure to stressful situations may take a toll on our physical and mental health. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, many are experiencing increased emotional stress due to loss, isolation and uncertainty. Understanding our stress responses and how stress affects us is the first step in learning how to cope with stress. Stress is a combination of thoughts and feelings that arise when we are faced with challenges. Signs and symptoms of stress may include: Anxiety, depression, fatigue, sleep disturbance, appetite or weight change, irritability or anger, difficulty concentrating, headaches, backaches or chest pain. The [More...]

Free Wills & Life Planning Documents for City Workers

July 15, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Municipal Employees Legal Services (MELS) has partnered with Volunteers of Legal Services (VOLS) to launch a Frontline Worker Initiative to provide FREE life planning documents, Wills, Power of Attorney, Health Care Proxies, to COVID-19 pandemic frontline workers. MELS offers this service to all DC 37 members who are participants in the Health and Security Plan. Now several hundred pro bono attorneys are ready to help us meet members’ needs, including Local 215 and Local 389 members who work at nonprofit agencies. You can apply online. You will be contacted by an attorney if your case is accepted. DC 37 members who are not frontline workers can access their benefit by calling the MELS Screening Unit at 212.815.1111 or email [More...]

Three Free College Degree Programs for Local 372 Members

June 23, 2020 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS  DC 37’s helping Local 372 members with three unique degree programs the union has negotiated with Monroe College and LaGuardia College’s Food Service Management Program. “We have an incredible education benefit that allows members to earn degrees that when paired with their work experience, prepares them to move up the career ladder in the Dept. of Education and earn better salaries,” said Local 372 and DC 37 President Shaun D. Francois, I. Francois and Henry Garrido, DC 37’s executive director, along with the union’s Education Fund and Research and Negotiations Dept. are working to retain and improve this benefit that provides three different choices for members in qualifying Local 372 titles to earn a free college education. “Currently 20 Local 372 members are enrolled in the LaGuardia program and working towards their [More...]

Updates and New Free Services for DC 37 Members

June 10, 2020 // 0 Comments

DC 37 has added more FREE services to help members during the COVID-19 pandemic. EMERGENCY COVID-19 CERTIFICATE for PUBLIC SCHOOL WORKERS, APPLY by SEPT. 1 Candidates seeking certain certificates and extensions may be eligible for the Emergency COVID-19 certificate, allowing them to work in public schools or districts for one year while taking and passing the required exam(s). You must apply on or before Sept. 1.  Learn more about how to earn the teaching certificate here.  DC 37 EDUCATION FUND  Summer HSE Classes: The DC 37 Ed Fund offers High School Equivalency Diplomas via online classes in July. Classes are offered in English and Spanish and the exam is available in English and Spanish. Classes include all five subject areas; a Math Only class is available for those who passed the other four subjects on the exam. To apply visit: [More...]

PSU Offers Grief and Bereavement Counseling

May 20, 2020 // 0 Comments

During COVID-19, people are experiencing many losses, including the death of loved ones, the loss of health, freedoms, and routines. Many are experiencing cumulative grief due to so many losses occurring consecutively. Any of these losses can trigger a range of emotions that individuals may experience. These emotions are also referred to as The Stages of Grief.  Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance are commonly seen within The Stages of Grief. Everyone has their own emotional timeline and experiences grief differently due to personal experiences. COVID-19 deaths are particularly challenging, as these deaths are more sudden and unexpected. During this time, those grieving do not have traditional grief rituals and goodbye ceremonies. Reaching out to others, writing a goodbye letter and speaking to a professional counselor are helpful coping mechanisms. During COVID-19 the [More...]

Spring 2020 DC 37 Education Fund Free Training and Benefits

May 6, 2020 // 0 Comments

Tuition Reimbursement: As DC 37 resumes its Tuition Reimbursement program, we thank you for bearing with us as we streamline the application process. There may be longer than usual processing time required. Thank you for your patience. Members should continue to mail in their completed reimbursement applications and supporting documents to: DC 37 Education Fund Attn: Tuition Refund 75 Broad Street, Suite 2204 New York, NY 10004 ### CUNY Counseling is here for you! While much has changed, Worker Education at the CUNY School of Labor & Urban Studies (SLU) helps you reach your career and academic goals. CUNY-SLU’s experienced advisors are available for 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, and Transferring previous credits, and [More...]

NY Housing Updates: Eviction and Foreclosure Moratorium, COVID-19 Discrimination, NYCHA & Section 8 Rent Hardships

March 30, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Municipal Employees Legal Services (MELS) is operational and ready to serve you. Our offices at 55 Water Street are closed but we are working remotely. Call us with your housing questions and for legal representation at 212-815-1111. During the public health emergency caused by COVID-19:  There will be no evictions or foreclosures through June 18, 2020.  Your landlord cannot start a lawsuit against you for non-payment of rent. However, the landlord may send you a rent demand notice asking you to pay your rent and threatening a lawsuit if you fail to make payment.  Your landlord cannot start a “holdover” lawsuit against you for grounds other than non-payment. However, the landlord may send you a termination notice or a notice to quit threatening to commence a court case if you don’t move out by a date certain. Your landlord cannot evict you or ask you to leave your apartment [More...]