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July 6, 2017 - 9:33am

County will pursue grant to expand wellness program

posted by Maria Pericozzi in news, health, notify.

The Ways and Means Committee voted Wednesday to authorize Public Health Director Paul Pettit to apply for a Greater Rochester Health Foundation Community Health Grant, as a pilot to expand the wellness program.

Currently, in Genesee County Building 2, located at 3837 W. Main Street Road, there is a small room for employees to exercise on their breaks. The equipment was donated house equipment to keep employees healthy during the bad weather months, Pettit said.

“We view this more as employee wellness,” Pettit said. “We don’t use the word fitness because we don’t have free weights and all the stuff you would see in a fitness center.”

Committee Member Marianne Clattenburg expressed her concern of the exclusivity of the wellness program to employees in Genesee County Building 2.

“You’re spending time writing grants, but you should be looking at the overall health of all our employees and how this would fit into a program for everyone,” Clattenburg said. “Unless it’s something like that, I’m not going to support it. We need to be thinking of everyone.”

Pettit stressed that the use of the machines is not exclusive to employees in Genesee County Building 2, but later, a member of the committee pointed out that only employees who work in that building have access to the building.

“That would be a door control issue,” Pettit said. “But, it can be done.”

If they receive the grant, the building would receive replacements for their current equipment. They would receive rubber flooring, a new treadmill, an elliptical machine and a bike.

“The [current] treadmill is in decent, working shape,” said Kristine Voos, an educator working on the project. “The other piece of equipment is unusable at this point.”

Voos said she has been working with an intern to decide what equipment to put in the room. Voos said in 2014, she surveyed the employees in the building to find out what they would like to see in the room.

“Instead of getting five pieces for one place, I’d rather see a couple treadmills everywhere,” Clattenburg said.

Another concern from committee members was that currently, those who use the machines, do not sign a waiver in case of injury.

“Currently we do not [have a waiver],” Voos said. “But we do have [waiver] templates.”

Having a wellness program has many benefits during the workday, Voos said.

“The lifestyle management hits on employee productivity,” Voos said. “They’re exercising more, they’re feeling better, they’re more aware and present during meetings.”

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