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HR: Worklife Benefits, Save for Retirement Week, Drug-Free Work Week

October 12, 2010, Volume 57, No. 07

Meeting Your Work and Family Needs
When the Unexpected Occurs

(This is the second in a series of articles this October that honors National Work and Family Month—a campaign to raise awareness of the importance of worklife benefits.)

It isn’t easy to be a caregiver in today’s fast-moving world, especially when work and family needs collide. Unexpected circumstances can occur at a moment’s notice, leaving you overwhelmed and struggling to meet your personal and professional needs. That’s why we provide a safety net for your dependent care needs. When your regular care provider isn’t available, Penn’s backup care program is.

Through a partnership with Parents in a Pinch, Inc., a company that provides expert in-home backup child and adult care, Penn faculty and staff have access to temporary in-home backup care services—seven days a week, day or night—to help you meet your family’s needs while you work. Child care is available for children up to 17 years in age who reside in your household, and adult care is available for adults age 18 and older in your immediate or extended family, regardless of whether they live with you.

Arranging backup care is easy—just contact Parents in a Pinch during their call center hours to request services, preferably at least 24 hours in advance. While Penn provides a subsidy, you’re still responsible for a portion of the cost when you use backup care services.

For more information, including cost structures, eligible dependents, types of services provided, how to make arrangements for backup care and more, visit the Human Resources website at www.hr.upenn.edu/quality/worklife/backupcare.aspx.

National Save for Retirement Week:

October 17–23

We know how difficult it can be to plan for the future. But saving now can make a big difference later—and Penn makes it easy for you. We have numerous vehicles to help you meet your retirement goals and build a nest egg that’s right for you. In honor of National Save for Retirement Week, read on to learn about important features of the University’s retirement plans that can help you save for a secure future.

TDR Retirement Plan

The Tax-Deferred Retirement Plan (TDR) provides you with a variety of investment options offered by our retirement vendors—TIAA-CREF and Vanguard. Once eligible, you’ll receive basic contributions from Penn based upon your age. You can also make contributions to your account, which Penn will match dollar for dollar up to 5% of your salary. All contributions are made on a pre-tax basis, which means you’re not being taxed on the money you contribute to your retirement savings.

Supplemental Retirement Annuity Plan

Most faculty and staff are eligible to participate in the Supplemental Retirement Annuity Plan (SRA). If you’re already contributing the full 5% through the TDR Plan, you can use the SRA Plan to invest additional funds for retirement. While there are no matching contributions from the University under the SRA Plan, you still have a variety of investment options from which to choose.

Roth 403(b) Option

Roth contributions allow you to save on an after-tax basis. Money set aside in a Roth 403(b) is taxed as it is deposited, while distributions taken during retirement are generally tax-free. For more information about the advantages of the Roth option or to participate, visit the Human Resources website at www.hr.upenn.edu/benefits/retirement/roth.aspx.

How Much Can I Contribute?

For calendar year 2010, your combined pre-tax and Roth after-tax contributions generally cannot exceed $16,500 per year. However, you’re eligible for additional catch-up contributions beginning January 1 of the year in which you turn age 50 and/or when you have at least 15 years of service with the University.

For more information on Penn’s retirement plan options, visit the Human Resources website at www.hr.upenn.edu/benefits/retirement.

National Drug-Free Work Week:

October 18–24

This year’s National Drug-Free Work Week will take place October 18–24. The University of Pennsylvania values the health and safety of the entire Penn community and is committed to maintaining a drug-free workplace year-round. Drug and alcohol abuse can harm not only the person with the substance abuse problem, but also his or her family, friends and co-workers. Penn prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, sale, possession or use of any drug by its employees in its workplace. Please take the time to review the University’s drug and alcohol policies which are available online:

• Drug-Free Workplace Policy:


• Alcohol and Drug Policy:


If you or a family member have a substance abuse problem, we encourage you to seek help. Penn provides free, confidential counseling services for you and your immediate family members through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). The EAP is designed to provide assistance with issues and challenges that may interfere with your personal or professional life, including serious issues such as substance abuse.

For more information about the EAP, visit the Division of Human Resources website at www.hr.upenn.edu/quality/wellness/eap.aspx or contact Penn Behavioral Health 24-hours a day, 7 days a week at (888) 321-4433.

—Division of Human Resources

Almanac - October 12, 2010, Volume 57, No. 07