IMPACT’s Maternity Program a Success Among Ironworkers

Member feedback is a paramount consideration for the Ironworker Management Pro-gressive Action Cooperative Trust (IM-PACT) when creating programs to help ironworkers throughout their careers. As an example, the organization’s maternity program, launched in 2017, has been successful with IMPACT members.

IMPACT is a joint venture between the ironworkers’ union and the con-tractors who employ its members. Its maternity program serves women both pre- and post-delivery.

“Once a pregnant ironworker has a note from her doctor saying that she can’t work, we write her checks directly from IMPACT, not an insurance company, for up to $800 during six months of pre-delivery,” says Kenny Waugh, IMPACT industry liaison director. “She can then get six weeks of paid maternity leave after delivery, eight weeks if she had a C-section.”

According to Waugh, four to six women use the maternity program at any given time.

“It costs more to put money into training these women and then see them leave because there were no maternity options than it does to provide maternity pay,” says Susan Avery, the MarComm associate for IMPACT.Though less than 3 percent of iron-workers are women, the program is a direct result of communications Iron-worker president Eric Dean had with Bridget Booker, an ironworker from IW Local 112 in Peoria, Ill. Booker was forced to choose between working and putting food on the table, and the health of her unborn child. She continued working and had a miscarriage as a result. President Dean felt no member should have to make a choice like that.

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