Governor Walz has declared March 6-12th Women in Construction Week in Minnesota. The Local 49 Women’s Committee put together a video celebrating their group and their volunteer efforts. We have posted it here. We thank them for being active members of this union and for their volunteer work in our community. I also want to thank all the women in Local 49 for their hard work and dedication to the union and their craft. We have invested significant effort as a union to recruit and train more women as Operating Engineers. Those efforts are paying off, the number of women in our trade is growing every year.
I also wanted to announce an added benefit through our health plan that is now in place that we hope will help us recruit more women to the trade. The Local 49 Health Plan has created a maternity benefit for female members. We are one of only a handful construction unions in the nation to provide a maternity benefit. The benefit is a one-time lump sum payment of $3,000 designed to offset loss of income for a female Operating Engineer that delivers a child to stay home with their child for a couple weeks after birth. If you are enrolled as an active participant in the Local 49 health plan and are pregnant, please call Wilson McShane and ask how to take advantage of this benefit.