This month, the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber recognized local employers who are committed to making health and wellness a priority in their workplaces through the WorkWell Awards. Through a selection committee, the nominees were placed by implemented changes to the following categories – healthy eating, physical activity, and tobacco cessation.
WORKWELL GOLD AWARD: Received by an employer who has implemented changes to all three categories – healthy eating, physical activity, and tobacco cessation.
In 2019 Pierce Transit held 3 physical activity challenges; 2 that were team based . One of the challenges was administered via an app to entice those who use their smartphones to make it easier to participate. Pierce Transit hosted local 5k’s for staff at community parks with trails. .
Pierce Transit updated their vendor agreement to ensure healthy food choices were provided and ensured sufficient refrigerators were available to staff as well as an onsite kitchen for meal prep/cooking.
Pierce Transit revamped their tobacco cessation program with the intent to increase the promotion of the program in 2020.
WORKWELL SILVER AWARD: Received by an employer who has implemented changes to two of the three categories – healthy eating, physical activity, and tobacco cessation.
Greater Tacoma Community Foundation
They provide their employees the opportunity to take a health survey through their health insurance for a free Fitbit. Employees also participated in the South Sound American Heart Association Walk in September.
To combat unhealthy food options in the workplace The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation continues to offer healthy eating options to their staff, adding fresh fruit and a monthly healthy snack delivery from SnackNation.
The Doty Group
The Doty Group encourages physical activity in a way that fits the lifestyles of their employees. Employees often pair up to visit downtown gyms and studios as workout buddies. They have a wellness program that rewards health screenings and good habits with a $100 gift card.
Tax season is a particularly high-stress time of year for employees at the Doty Group. And it’s easy to develop poor snacking habits during the long working hours. To combat this, the Doty Group makes sure their offices are well stocked with with fresh vegetables and fruits. Although the midnight oil might be burning, the emphasis remains on staying healthy.
WORKWELL BRONZE AWARD: Received by an employer who has implemented changes to one of the three categories – healthy eating, physical activity, and tobacco cessation.
Better Business Bureau Northwest & Pacific
The Better Business Bureau Northwest is known for its accreditation of businesses, but it can’t do the work of its mission without great employees The BBB revamped the healthy snacks they provide for their employees including adding more fresh produce for snacking and adding dispensers for trail mix, granola and healthy cereal.
The YWCA has a wellness committee with a budget to promote health and wellbeing for staff as well as all our program clients. They buy everyone on staff a copy of Trauma Stewardship since they work in domestic violence and the work is hard with many stories of violence that can cause vicarious trauma. The YWCA cares that their staff takes care of themselves.
ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION ADVOCATE AWARD: Received by an employer who provides encouragement and incentives to their employees for using active transportation.
Effective programs include Kaiser Permanente’s robust commute program implemented in 2019, which including discounted ORCA passes, carpool and van matching, subsidized vanpools, commute concierge service, monthly awards, and a $5/day cash incentive for employees who are taking alternative transportation to/from work.
Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department
In 2019, the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department began a smart commute incentive program to offer personal holidays based on their employees use of active transport to work, such as walking, biking, or by bus or carpool. Along with this, the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department’s ORCA Choice program was created to make it easier to ride the bus, and designated parking spaces for carpools and vanpools. They happily report that these efforts, on top of effective marketing and carpool match making have removed at least 16 cars from their parking lot, along with all related miles, gas, and emissions that go with them.
HAPPY HEART AWARD: Received by an employer who demonstrate a broad and long-term commitment to employee health and wellbeing.
In 2019, CHI Franciscan continued to build a strong culture with the main goal to help employees establish and maintain good health habits. This included providing education on leading a healthier lifestyle when it comes to nutrition, supporting a tobacco-free campus, and a no-hiring policy for tobacco users.
CHI Franciscan heavily encourages and promotes the need to use alternative commute options for the health of their employees and the environment.
In 2019 CHI Franciscan conducted a campaign in all cafeterias, Rethink Your Drink, started a monthly wellness e-newsletter, onsite Health and Wellness fair, onsite Farmers Markets, and financial wellness online seminars.
No matter what a CHI Franciscan employee’s interest is, they provide information, programs, challenges, and incentives to keep employees motivated and engaged.
City of Tacoma
In 2019 the City of Tacoma continued their commitment of wellness training for their employees as part of their Continuous Development/Training classes. Employees can enjoy these classes during the workday without having to use PTO.
These classes vary from financial wellness/retirement, to all aspects of health and wellbeing.
The city’s Wellness Program encompasses total wellbeing by encouraging employees to earn points via a variety of healthy activities; getting an annual physical; participating in a certified weight management program; being active, eating a healthy diet; getting adequate sleep; attending a city sponsored wellness or webinar class; participating in a behavior change program; and completing a health risk assessment. By meeting a 1,000-point goal through RedBrick Health, they earn a significant discount towards their health insurance premium contribution.
Lastly, the City of Tacoma offers health fairs at the Tacoma Police Department, Municipal Building, and at Tacoma Public Utilities. Over 1,000 employees attend these events!
MultiCare Health System
In 2019, MultiCare Healthy@work supported the opening of five mini onsite gyms at various MultiCare clinics to support employees desire to exercise at work while on breaks or before and after shifts.
MultiCare offers healthy food options in the cafeterias, as well as, grab and go options.
The Healthy@work program offers points for employees who go through the tobacco-cessation program.
The MultiCare Smart Commuter program offers employees ORCA cards, bike racks and financial assistance for employees who choose to commute by taking the bus, vanpool or Sounder Commuter Rail.
In 2019, the Healthy@work program introduced the Well Workplace Scholarship Program. This program provided a limited number of scholarships to help MultiCare locations improve their environments. The funds distributed support employee health and well-being in the workplace. Winners receive equipment for relaxation rooms; exercise equipment for onsite gyms and even bike helmets for those employees working downtown.
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