ALBANY— Thomas Bushnell takes every chance he gets to discuss the value of our union with new hires.
Bushnell, a mail operations supervisor at the New York State Archives and 1st Vice President of our union’s State Education Department Local, decided in 2013 to finish his bachelor’s degree.
Bushnell took advantage of the NYS-CSEA Partnership for Education and Training’s voucher program that provides tuition reimbursement up to two, four credit-hour classes per year.
Over seven years, Bushnell took 14 courses. In 2021, Bushnell earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Management and Economics from Empire State College.
Bushnell continues to take advantage of training and certificate courses through the Partnership to enhance personal and professional skills.
The programs are available to CSEA-represented New York state workers via their union contract and are offered at no cost to the workers.
Member-only benefits add value
Bushnell can also speak as to the value of CSEA member-only benefits.
He recently took advantage of a member-only benefit through Pearl Insurance to get a discount on a bundled home/auto policy after his previous insurer of 30 years gave him a hassle when adding a new vehicle to his existing policy.
Pearl Insurance, which has partnered with CSEA for more than 80 years, was able to find Bushnell a new insurer, offering a more robust policy with expanded liability coverage at a lower premium. His premium payments are easily deducted from his paycheck over the course of the year.
“I encourage new hires to join the union,” said Bushnell. “There’s strength in numbers. I let them know about all the benefits of being in CSEA as far as contractual rights, representation at disciplines and having a say in our contract. I also encourage people to take advantage of the range of benefits available to save money.”
— Therese Assalian
From left to right, State Education Department Local 1st Vice President Thomas Bushnell shares information about CSEA member-only benefits with new CSEA member Conner Lasch while on a break at the New York State Archives.