More Employees Seek Housing Assistance than Child Care Assistance

employeescreeningblog, employee screening, pre-employment screeningMany employers offer employee assistance plans to help staffers find child care, elder are, legal counsel or financial services. These plans are good for employees, offering a lifeline to help when they really need it. They’re good for employers, too. Employee assistance plans foster loyalty and reduce the stress level to make the workplace a better place for everyone to be.

ComPsych is a company that offers employee assistance plans to over 13,000 companies worldwide. They track calls to monitor trends regarding what employees need help with. Their latest report shows that more calls from January to June of 2010 were about housing than any other category—even child care.

Since ComPsych started tracking employee assistance calls in 1984, child care issues were the number one reason employees called. Not so this year. Of the 25,000 calls received from January to June 2010, 41% were moving-related. 77% of these callers needed help finding an apartment, and two-thirds of them said it was related to foreclosure.

Not only were housing-related calls up 14% over this six-month period, but requests for help with child counseling increased 12% from the same period the year before—perhaps due to increased child trauma around housing issues, like foreclosure and moving.

Calls for help with elder care and health care issues remained steady at 17% and 10%, respectively. Child-care calls dropped nine percentage points from the first six months of 2009. With many parents out of work, perhaps child care is one less worry to deal with. But the spike in housing assistance calls is reflective of the continued housing crisis in the U.S.

Now, as banks and mortgage companies across the country announce freezes on foreclosure proceedings, thousands of homeowners who are behind on their mortgages will likely be able to stay in their homes for the foreseeable future—not making mortgage payments and not facing eviction.

Perhaps the number of housing assistance calls to ComPsych will decline over the next six months.

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