National Drive Electric Week 2020

National Drive Electric Week 2020

With OEMs sharing new information about continued advancement in technology and new models coming to market, organizations like Consumers Energy, Renewable Energy & Electric Vehicles, believe it’s important for consumers to know that Michigan is continuing efforts to expedite the availability of public charging stations, particularly DC Fast charging stations that will enable drivers to travel the state, with diminishing concerns of “range anxiety”.

National Drive Electric Week, Sep 26-Oct 4, 2020, is a nationwide celebration to raise awareness of the many benefits of all-electric and plug-in hybrid cars, trucks, motorcycles, and more. They are fun to drive, are less expensive and more convenient to fuel than gasoline vehicles, are better for the environment, promote local jobs, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Are you considering going electric? Come talk to owners who have successfully done so!

Each year, National Drive Electric Week includes hundreds of events in communities across the United States and around the world. This year, for the 10th annual National Drive Electric Week, online events have been added for the first time. Please see the events page for more information about national, state and local events near you.


National Drive Electric Week


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Drivers risk tickets after license, vehicle registration extension expires Sept. 30

Michiganders have less than a week to renew their expired driver’s licenses, state identification cards and vehicle registrations before they will be assessed late fees and risk a ticket from police. All such credentials with expirations after March 1 were extended by the state Legislature through Sept. 30, and no additional extension is expected.
For driver’s licenses and IDs required to be renewed in person, such as those requiring a new photo, Secretary of State offices have been offering special appointments since Aug. 24, and they continue to be available through Sept. 30. Those that don’t require an in-person renewal must be renewed online or by mail.
The quickest way to renew vehicle registrations is at one of the more than 120 self-service stations located across the state. The average transaction time is two minutes, and customers walk away with their tabs in hand. Vehicle registrations also can be renewed online and by mail. Branch visits are not required for registration renewals.
To schedule an appointment, conduct a transaction online or find a self-service station, visit


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Approaching Behavioral Health Holistically

As behavioral health needs grow among today’s workforce – and especially among the workforce of tomorrow – organizations need to change their approach to think beyond traditional interventions.

To ensure a healthier, more productive workforce in the face of today’s challenges, employers need to implement a broad approach to behavioral health. Behavioral health isn’t just about the mind: it’s about integrating care to treat the whole person, so their physical and mental health care works in tandem. At the same time, steps should be taken to reduce the cultural stigma that prevents many from seeking the help they need.


A major barrier for many employees as they manage behavioral health issues is gaining access to the resources they need. Not only is seeking help a difficult first step – two out of five Americans live in areas that have a shortage of behavioral health providers.

Employers can step in to help by offering several kinds of behavioral health supports. There are Employee Assistance Programs that can help employees connect with the care that they need. Some employers may also choose to offer behavioral health clinicians in the workplace or through a virtual platform. Another option is to lower the amount of cost-sharing employees have for behavioral health visits through their health plan.

Increasing communication to employees on key behavioral health topics – like stress management, anxiety and depression, for example – can help build awareness of critical signs and symptoms that may have previously been ignored.


As an employer, while you consider which health plan offerings to provide to your employees, consider health plan partners that embrace integrated care models. Integrated care puts equal importance on physical and mental health.

There’s an economic argument supporting this holistic approach to health care: the cost of treating individuals who have both chronic medical conditions and behavioral health issues are two to three times higher than those without a behavioral health condition. Health plans that empower primary care providers to work with behavioral health providers allow for better coordination of care, which in turn reduces costs.


A productive workplace is a healthy one – and that doesn’t just mean a weight on a scale. Creating a workplace culture that values a healthy environment for employees means expanding benefits beyond basic medical coverage. A broad range of perks including things like tuition reimbursement, flexible hours and workplace wellness programs can help employees feel fulfilled in their work-life balance and further committed to their roles.

By taking steps to create a workplace that meets your employee’s needs, you are showing that you are listening and supporting them as more than just employees – but as people. Companies with engaged employees see as much as four and a half times more revenue growth than those with low employee engagement.


It can be incredibly difficult to step forward and seek help for a behavioral health issue – especially if an individual is worried about how they will be perceived socially and at work. There’s still a heavy stigma about seeking counseling or treatment, but employers have a powerful role to play.

About 62% of employees said that if someone in a leadership role spoke openly about mental health, they would feel more comfortable talking about it themselves. By empowering leaders, workplace influencers and managers with training on mental health resources and support, dialogues about behavioral health in the workplace will become more common and less stigmatized. The opportunities are endless to integrate conversations about behavioral health into existing meetings – including new hire orientations, lunch time webinars and ongoing speaker series.

Dr. William Beecroft, M.D., D.L.F.A.P.A., is a medical director of behavioral health at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Dr. Amy McKenzie, M.D., is a medical director of provider engagement at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. 

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This article was originally published on, a website sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.  Blue Cross and MADA are your trusted partners in building a healthier business and workforce.

Ambassador Program Launches to Educate Michigan Businesses on Workplace Safety Guidelines

The Dept. of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) and Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) are launching a new program to support Michigan businesses to reopen safely amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The MIOSHA Ambassador Program offers education and one-on-one guidance to help businesses understand regulations on workplace safety.

“Michigan businesses and workers need support during these challenging times,” said Sean Egan, Michigan COVID-19 Workplace Director. “Education is essential with new guidance and directives regularly changing as we continue to battle with COVID-19. Ambassadors will work with businesses to correct any issues. We want to help employers understand and apply directives so they can comply, stay open and stay safe.”

MIOSHA has been working with Michigan employers to help comply with requirements of the Governor’s Executive Orders, CDC guidance and OSHA Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19. This program enhances MIOSHA’s consultative services designed and focused on education. Guidance and resources are posted at

Ambassadors will visit businesses statewide to offer education and support, with a focus on workplaces with a higher risk of community transmission. That includes bars, restaurants, retail stores, gas stations, convenience stores, bowling alleys and gyms. Ambassadors will not propose citations or issue penalties.

“Collaboration is key in the effort to stop the spread of COVID-19,” said MIOSHA Director Bart Pickelman. “Throughout the pandemic, we’ve heard from many employers and employees wanting to clarify regulations and determine how they apply to their specific workplace. This ambassador effort will bring that education and support directly to businesses across the state.”

As Michigan continues to reopen the economy, employers must operate in compliance with the current Executive Orders and state and federal guidelines. Ambassadors will work with business owners and managers to best implement safety directives to help ensure a safe workplace for employees and customers. Ambassadors will utilize the Ambassador Assessment to evaluate safety precautions are put in place and will provide a toolkit of resources for additional ongoing support.

Educational materials in the Ambassador toolkit can be found at and include:

“Ensuring the business community creates safe workplaces is key to slow the spread of the virus and protect our workers,” said Steve Claywell, President of the Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council. “Michigan can only continue to reopen and keep people working if we all act responsibly. If we all do our part, we can maintain the progress we’ve made against the virus as more Michiganders get back to work.”

“Helping the business community to create safe workplaces has been key to limiting the spread of the virus,” said Gerry Anderson, DTE Energy Executive Chairman and Co-Chair of the Michigan Economic Recovery Council. “Michigan’s ability to reopen the remaining portions of our economy depends on all of us remaining disciplined and doing our part – both at work and at home.”

“Support for people and businesses during this time is critical,” said Doug Rothwell, President and CEO of Business Leaders for Michigan. “We have to be vigilant and work together to support a strong economy and limit the spread of the virus. But it all starts with education. Business owners want to do their part, but they need to know exactly what is required of them.”

“Business owners face a fluid set of complex issues regarding COVID-19 that require support to navigate,” said Brian Calley, President of Small Business Association of Michigan. “As guidance from the state continues to evolve, with different rules governing various regions and industries, business owners need to know exactly what they mean and how to apply them. Ongoing education is necessary to keep the economy moving.”

Additional information to ensure safe and healthy working conditions can also be found online at

Information around COVID-19 is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at and

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