Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Press Release: City of Federal Way earns WellCity honor

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 16, 2009

MEDIA CONTACT
Kimberly Shelton
Fitness Coordinator
P/253.835.6932

City of Federal Way earns WellCity honor

Federal Way was one of 34 cities that will receive the Association of Washington Cities’ WellCity Award of Achievement for its outstanding worksite wellness program.

Kimberly Shelton, the City’s wellness coordinator, and her wellness committee received recognition at the association’s 24th annual AWC Employee Health Academy in Richland, Wash.

The AWC WellCity award will be presented to Federal Way delegates at AWC’s 76th Annual Conference in Spokane in June.

The AWC WellCity Award recognizes cities and towns that demonstrate best practices in employee health promotion. An AWC WellCity must meet minimum criteria in each of nine WellCity standards including policies and procedures, leadership support, wellness committee, internal and external resources, needs assessment, worksite environment, operating plan, mix of program activities and evaluation.

"Well-designed worksite wellness programs help reduce employee health risks and health care costs," says Gayla Gjertsen, AWC’s Director of Insurance Services. "In Washington State, city employees with strong wellness programs average $300 per year less in health care claims than those without wellness programs."

"Other benefits of employee wellness programs include improved morale, increased productivity, reduced use of sick leave, reduced workers’ compensation claims, and reduced health care utilization and costs," says Gjertsen. "Wellness programs such as Federal Way’s help the city operate more efficiently and contribute to maintaining affordable health care coverage for all AWC Trust-insured cities and employees."

Cities and towns also receiving the award include: Anacortes, Arlington, Battle Ground, Bonney Lake, Bothell, Bremerton, Burien, Cheney, Colville, Concrete, Enumclaw, Fife, Issaquah, Kirkland, Lacey, Lake Stevens, Lakewood, Longview, Lynnwood, Marysville, Mill Creek, Oak Harbor, Olympia, Pullman, SeaTac, Tacoma, Toppenish, Tukwila, Vancouver, Washougal, Wenatchee, Woodland and Yakima.

AWC is a private, non-profit corporation serving Washington’s 281 cities. AWC’s Employee Benefit Trust provides health benefits to over 16,000 city employees in Washington.
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