January 12, 2021

A NYSUT Member Survival Guide

Source: NYSUT Social Services
survival guide

It’s ok to have a bad day.

As a NYSUT member, you’re not alone. Your union membership gives you access to a wide array of benefits and resources to help you through the tough times – such as our Social Services and Member Benefits programs.

About NYSUT Social Services

NYSUT Social Services is a confidential benefit offered to all NYSUT members. Our mission is to improve the quality of our members' lives through social services support and advocacy.

For in-service members, Social Services can:

  • Help you utilize your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) benefit if you have one
  • Recommend a support group, convenient to you, that matches your particular needs
  • Find reliable counseling services in your area including marital and family counseling
  • Suggest treatment options for addictive behaviors Arrange assistance for members who are victims of school violence
  • Assist you in obtaining specialized services for disabling conditions
  • Follow your progress through a hospitalization and make sure you receive a safe discharge plan Help connect you to the network of aging services for your older loved ones
  • Suggest tips for successful caregiving

If you would like to get more information about NYSUT’s Social Services, please contact us at 518-213-6000, email us at socialservices@nysut.org or visit nysut.org/socialservices


  • Control the things you can and let go of the things you can’t. Know the difference.
  • Establish a routine.
  • Stay socially connected within the context of precautions.
  • Give yourself permission to respond emotionally.
  • Don’t judge yourself (or others) too harshly especially through uncertain times.
  • Stay informed with reliable news sources.
  • Strengthen your self-care: sleep, diet, exercise.
  • Plan for the future…establish a sense of hope and something to look forward to.
  • Practice altruism.
  • Find a quiet uncluttered space to practice mindfulness, meditation and breathing.
  • Don’t underestimate your resiliency and strength.
  • Keep a perspective about previous times you have coped with stress and gotten through it.
  • Stay in touch with gratitude and what is going well.

NYSUT’s statewide representative for our Social Services Program is Ani Shahinian, LCSW. Ani has worked more than 25 years in medical and mental health settings. She joined the New York State United Teachers Social Services department in 2007.

NYSUT Member Benefits

As a NYSUT member, you have the ability to participate in the more than 40 endorsed programs and services that can help support and protect you and your family through life’s ups and downs.

From student debt loan assistance to financial planning, Member Benefits offers an array of personal programs designed with the NYSUT member in mind.

"Member Benefits continues to offer programs and services that you and your family count on without interruption." — COVID-19 response from J. Philippe Abraham, Chairperson, NYSUT Member Benefits Trust

If you are a local leader interested in hosting an information session on NYSUT’s Social Services or Member Benefits programs, please contact your Labor Relations Specialist.

survival guide