COVID-stressed parent? Don’t forget your employee benefits!

As the COVID-19 pandemic stretches on, people are feeling the stretch as well. Whether it’s financial stress, mental health, job anxiety or a combination of all, the effects of this ongoing crisis go far beyond just health concerns.

Parents in particular are feeling stressed as they navigate this moment. Between their assisting with their children’s remote schooling, child care facilities being closed, and many attempting to do their own work at home, working moms and dads are under enormous pressure under difficult conditions.

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If you're feeling stressed and anxious, your employee benefits may include resources that can help.

 


For many working parents, employer-sponsored benefits may be available to help deal with the stress, anxiety and emotional health needs of the coronavirus era. These programs and services go far beyond basic medical care and retirement plans, so be sure to review your company’s offerings to see what’s available.

Here are some frequently offered options that can help provide some relief.

  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs): Many employers include EAPs in their benefits packages to help families manage work and personal issues. They typically offer access to resources such as counseling services, child care and elder care referrals, and even legal and financial support, all designed to help families cope with challenges they face.
  • Employee discounts: Employee benefits packages often include negotiated discounts on travel, entertainment and other products and services they use frequently. Health care plans may also include discounts on medical necessities and other healthy-living needs. These discounts can help families save money on both necessities and recreation to stay healthy and happy.
  • Tuition assistance: If you have the time, completing a certificate, learning a new skill or finishing a degree may help take your job—and your income—to another level. Many employers offer tuition assistance that will pay for all or part your course of study. Take advantage of this opportunity to enhance your skills and value at work.
  • Identity theft protection: Falling victim to identity theft can be easier than you think, and it can lead to financial losses, damaged credit and the hassle of working it all out. Employer-provided identity theft protection programs can help with obtaining credit reports, adding fraud alerts to your accounts and replacing credit and debit cards.

These are just a few of the sometimes overlooked benefits you may have access to through your employer that can provide peace of mind in this challenging period. Talk to your HR department or visit your HR website for more information and assistance.