TriWest Helps Combat Military Spouse Unemployment
PHOENIX — As of June 2011, the unemployment rate for military spouses was 26 percent, according to a study by the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America.
However, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the national unemployment average as only 8.6 percent.
To help combat the higher unemployment rate among America’s military spouses, TriWest Healthcare Alliance has recently joined the Military Spouse Employment Partnership—a targeted recruitment and employment solution to connect spouses from all military branches to private companies seeking their skill sets.
Combating Military Spouse Unemployment
TriWest—the company responsible for managing the military’s TRICARE healthcare benefit for 2.9 million beneficiaries in 21 western states—was recently named the number two most military-spouse-friendly employer in America. This is the third consecutive year TriWest made Military Spouse Magazine’s top-20 list.
Support for Military Spouse Employees
About 20 percent of TriWest’s recruitment budget is set aside for military spouses. Additionally, at any given time, 10 to 30 employees at TriWest have a spouse who is deployed.
To support its military spouse employees, TriWest offers the "We Care" program, which:
- Designates temporary, alternative work schedules for spouses to accommodate transitioning to a single-head-of-household during mobilization
- Offers a reduction of work hours less than full-time status without losing full-time benefits
- Provides eligibility for paid time off
- Grants two phone cards totaling 100 minutes per month
- Offers eligibility for eight hours of administrative leave, with pay, to attend homecoming ceremonies
"My favorite thing about working at TriWest during spouse deployments is the encouragement I received from the company," said Jenny Hall, a beneficiary services education representative at TriWest, who spent six of her years at the company while her husband served active duty. "During Christmas, (TriWest President and CEO David J. McIntyre, Jr.) sent gifts to my children and myself. And when my spouse returned, I was given the day off to welcome him home, with each deployment. Working at TriWest is like being part of a family.”
More information on TriWest benefits and employment.