Union Plus has once again opened its ‘Unions Power America’ contest. The contest runs now and ends August 8 at 11:59 p.m.

Cash prizes have been announced with a grand prize of $25,000, first prize of $20,000, second prize of $15,000 and 25 third prizes of $2,000 each.

To win, members need to tell Union Plus how you or another union member you know are making a difference at home or in your/their community. If nominating someone else, both of you will be entered to win.

Go here to read the official contest rules and to enter you or a co-worker to win.

WINNERS HONORED FOR ACHIEVEMENT AND UNION VALUES

Washington, D.C. – Union Plus recently awarded $250,000 in scholarships to 199 students representing 37 unions, including eight winners representing SMART. The SMART winners are:

Noah Berning of Monroeville, Indiana

Berning, whose father, Mark Berning, is a member of SMART Local 20, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Evan Bock of Rantoul, Illinois

Bock, whose father, Christopher Bock, is a member of SMART Local 1358, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Grace Brodarick of Southold, New York

Brodarick, whose father, Christopher Brodarick, is a member of SMART Local 645, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Miranda Garcia of Fresno, California

Garcia, whose father, Angelo Garcia, is a member of SMART Local 104, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Kaysa Kurtz-Merwin of Rocky Ford, Colorado

Kurtz-Merwin, whose father, Anthony Merwin, is a member of SMART Local 0945, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Nathan Roelse of Cleveland, Wisconsin

Roelse, whose father, William Roelse, is a member of SMART Local 18, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Logan VanLaanen of Green Bay, Wisconsin

VanLaanen, whose father, Jesse VanLaanen, is a member of SMART Local 18, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Billi Vavra of Prescott, Iowa

Vavra, who is a member of SMART Local 199, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Meet some of the 2021 SMART honorees

Noah Berning
Purdue University
Heritage Junior-Senior High School (HHS)
Monroeville, Indiana (2019)

Noah recently completed his first year at Purdue, where he is an agricultural systems management and agricultural economics major. He hopes to enter the agriculture industry and will soon intern for Co-Alliance Cooperative in northwest Indiana. Throughout high school, Noah served as the Indiana FFA national officer candidate and state treasurer, as well as chapter and district president. He also attended the National Young Farmer Educational Association Agriculture’s Promise advocacy program in Washington, D.C.

Noah proudly hails from a union family; his father has been a SMART member for more than 20 years. “This allows him to do what he loves, knowing that he can work in a safe environment with fair pay,” Noah said. “I am extremely thankful to SMART and the labor movement because it provided my family with financial stability so that I could have the chance to follow my dream career and attend my dream university.”


Evan Bock
Rantoul Township High School (RTHS)
Rantoul, Illinois (2021)

Evan will begin college this fall and plans to major in engineering, with the ultimate goal of working for NASA. In 2019, Evan was selected as an Illinois state delegate at the Congress of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists in Boston, and he is an ambassador for Shriners Hospitals for Children. He and two family members battle a genetic bone disease, which makes him thankful for his father’s SMART membership. “My family would not be able to afford the medical treatments we need without SMART,” Evan said. “SMART is a lifeline for many workers and their families.”

“Evan’s commitment and enthusiasm to aerospace engineering, problem solving and learning allow him to stand out and succeed,” said RTHS science teacher Kristin Walerowicz. “His character will lead him to succeed in whatever he does while uplifting those around him.”


Grace Brodarick
Southold High School (SHS)
New York (2021)

Grace will begin college this fall and plans to major in nursing, following in her mother’s footsteps. She is thankful for her father’s SMART membership and the benefits it provides. “SMART’s hard work and negotiations allow members to thoroughly enjoy the fruits of their labor,” Grace said. “I am forever grateful for all that SMART has provided my father and my family.”

Last fall, Grace shadowed Dr. Vishnu Seodat for an internship with New York Health. “Grace showed keen interest in medicine and was eager to learn,” Seodat said. “She asked questions about every diagnosis and was very interested in the process of physical examination. Grace will be an asset to the medical profession.”


Miranda Garcia
Cal State University, Fresno (FSU)
Fowler High School (FHS)
California (2019)

Miranda is a psychology major at FSU and expects to complete her bachelor’s degree in May 2023. Her dream is to be a counselor, specializing in domestic violence and anger management. Miranda works at Charis Educational Center, a Fresno social services organization that offers anger management and parenting classes.

“Miranda consistently shows a determination to improve herself, her school environment and the people around her,” said FHS Learning/Activities Director Mike McColm. “She is quick to look for ways to help people around her and always willing to take on a challenge. Miranda is highly motivated, conscientious and a pleasure to be around.”

The Union Plus Scholarship Program

The Union Plus Scholarship Program awards scholarships based on outstanding academic achievement, personal character, financial need and commitment to the values of organized labor. The program is offered through the Union Plus Education Foundation.

Since starting the program in 1991, Union Plus has awarded more than $5 million in educational funding to more than 3,400 union members, spouses and dependent children. Union Plus Scholarship awards are granted to students attending a two-year college, four-year college, graduate school, or recognized technical or trade school. The selection process is very competitive, and this year 5,008 applications were received from 67 unions and all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, two U.S. territories and six Canadian provinces.

Visit www.unionplus.org/scholarship for applications and benefit eligibility.

About Union Plus

Union Plus, founded by the AFL-CIO in 1986, uses the collective buying power of America’s 12.5 million union members to deliver top-quality benefits and services at competitive prices to working families. In addition to the scholarship program, Union Plus offers the Free College program, which makes it possible for union members and their families to earn an associate degree completely online at no cost. As a complement to the Free College program, Union Plus offers the Bachelor’s Degree Completion program, providing union members and their families a no-cost option to complete their bachelor’s degree completely online. Union Plus also provides a wide range of money-saving programs, including discounts on wireless services from AT&T, the only nationwide unionized wireless carrier; insurance protection; savings on travel and recreation; and more. For additional information, visit unionplus.org.

Brodarick, whose father, Christopher Brodarick, is a member of SMART Local 645, has been awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Union Plus logo; Union Plus; Union Plus Benefits Union Plus is offering disaster relief grants of $500 to union members who have been affected by Hurricane Irma.
To be eligible to receive a grant you must be a participant in one of these Union Plus programs: Union Plus credit card program, Union Plus life insurance, accidental death insurance, Union Plus auto insurance or the Union Plus mortgage program. Other qualifications may apply.
Click here to learn more.
Click here to view the flyer in Spanish.
 


Union Plus is a nonprofit organization founded by the AFL-CIO in 1986 to provide excellent consumer benefit programs exclusively to union members (current and retired) and their families.

CHICAGO – Ensure your Independence Day weekend is filled with celebration and not regret with these 10 fire safety tips, from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region V office in Chicago:

  1. Be sure fireworks are legal in your area before using or buying them.
  2. Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities and never allow children to play with or ignite fireworks. Sparklers alone account for one quarter of emergency room fireworks injuries.
  3. If you set off fireworks, keep a bucket of water handy in case of malfunction or fire.
  4. If fireworks malfunction, don’t relight them! Douse and soak them with water then throw them away.
  5. Never ignite fireworks in a container, especially one that is glass or metal.
  6. Use your grill well away from your home and deck railings, and out from under branches or overhangs.
  7. Open your gas grill before lighting.
  8. Periodically remove grease or fat buildup in trays below your gas or propane grill so it cannot be ignited.
  9. Declare a three-foot “kid and pet-free zone” around the grill to keep them safe.
  10. Avoid loose clothing that can catch fire when cooking on the grill.

You can find more information and tips on being fire safe this Fourth of July, by visiting www.usfa.fema.gov.

Also, be sure that your holiday is union-made by checking the chart below from Union Plus! Click here for the complete union-made list.

4th of July union made

Text GRILLUNION to 22555 to get the list sent to your phone. Msg&Data Rates May Apply. Reply STOP to opt-out.

Union Plus logo The Union Plus Scholarship Program is once again offering up scholarships ranging from $500 to $4,000 to help union members and their children attend college. These one-time cash awards are for study beginning in the Fall each year and students may re-apply every year that they are enrolled in school. The deadline to apply for the 2015 scholarship is Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015, at 12 p.m. (eastern time). 

Since 1992, the program has awarded more than $3.6 million to students of union families. Applicants are evaluated according to academic ability, social awareness, financial need and appreciation of labor. It is recommended that students have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

To apply, students, their parents or spouses must have been a union member for at least one year and this minimum must be satisfied by May 31, 2015. The applicant must also be accepted into a U.S. accredited college or university, community college or technical or trade school at the time the award is issued. The scholarship must be used for the 2015-2016 school year.

Scholarships will be awarded by May 31. During the first two weeks of June, award recipients will be individually notified by mail. To learn more or to apply for the scholarship, click here

The AFL-CIO and Union Privilege (also known as Union Plus) announced today they have partnered together to offer students a chance to win scholarships commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

They will award 50 scholarships of $5,000 each to high school seniors to help pay for college costs. To apply, students must fill out an application, write an essay and provide a letter of reference from a teacher or other adult familiar with their achievements.

The winners will be chosen from the sons or daughters of union families or of current members of an eligible community organization. Applicants must apply by July 1, 2013.

Click here for more information.

UTU members can already save on Disney World park tickets, but right now,
they could also win a Disney vacation for four.

By signing up to receive Union Plus emails and mobile alerts featuring union savings and special offers, you’ll be automatically entered to win a Disney dream vacation valued at more than $4,000.

The vacation package includes roundtrip airfare for four to sunny Florida, a four-night stay at a union-friendly hotel, five days of car rental and four 4-day passes for Disney World Four-Day Park Hopper tickets.

The passes are redeemable for two adult and two children’s tickets.

For a chance to win, register here or use your mobile device to text DISNEY to 22555 to participate in the contest.

For additional information about obtaining Disney World discounts for union families, click here.

 

Disaster relief grants of $500 are available from Union Plus to help eligible participants in the Union Plus credit card, insurance or mortgage programs who are facing financial hardship due to the Hurricane Sandy disaster.

The money does not have to be repaid.  Funds are limited to the nearly $370,000 available in the Union Plus Disaster Relief Fund. 

To qualify for a Union Plus disaster relief grant, you must: 

  1. Have been a victim of the severe weather in counties designated by FEMA as qualifying for individual assistance. (List of qualifying counties available at UnionPlus.org/Sandy.)
  2. Have experienced a significant loss of income or property within the last six months due to the disaster.
  3. Have had a Union Plus credit card, Union Plus insurance policy or Union Plus mortgage for at least 12 months with the account or policy in good standing (be up-to-date on payments).
  4. Describe his or her circumstances and document the income or property loss. 

To apply for a disaster relief grant, union members who participate in any of the following programs can call:

  • Union Plus credit card: (877) 761-5028
  • Union Plus insurance: (800) 472-2005
  • Union Plus mortgage: (800) 472-2005 

Credit card holders are also eligible for Union Plus grants that help union members who lose their job, are recently disabled, face high hospital bills or are forced to go on strike. The mortgage program also offers assistance that includes interest-free loans and grants for union members who are unemployed, recently disabled, locked out or on strike. 

Union Plus credit card holders are encouraged to contact Capital One, the new Union Plus credit card issuer, at (877) 761-5028, if you need additional assistance. Capital One has programs in place to help customers who are experiencing difficulties due to the storm. 

Union Plus mortgage holders, including anyone who is in the process of receiving a new Union Plus mortgage, are encouraged to contact Chase, who provides Union Plus Mortgages, at (888) 356-0023 or tweet @ChaseSupport, for additional assistance and information.

For more information about the Union Plus disaster benefits, visit UnionPlus.org/Sandy.

Union members living in areas impacted by the recent tornadoes and flooding, and who participate in Union Plus programs, may be eligible for financial assistance.

Union Plus disaster relief grants of $500 are available to help participants in the Union Plus credit card, insurance or mortgage programs who are facing financial hardship due to the recent severe weather. The money does not have to be repaid.

Union Plus mortgage holders may also be eligible to receive payment extensions or other special help.

To qualify for a Union Plus disaster relief grant, the union member must:

  • Have been a victim of the severe weather in counties designated by FEMA as qualifying for individual assistance.
  • Have experienced a significant loss of income or property due to the disaster.
  • Have had a Union Plus credit card, Union Plus insurance policy or Union Plus mortgage for at least 12 months, with the account or policy up to date in payments.
  • Describe his or her circumstances and document the income or property loss.

To apply for a disaster relief grant, union members eligible should call:

  • Union Plus credit card: (877) 761-5028
  • Union Plus mortgage: (800) 472-2005
  • Union Plus insurance: (800) 472-2005
  • Go to www.unionplus.org/disaster