Her company locked her out of work; her union paid her mortgage

Lisa Pedersen, of Revere, Mass., is trailblazer in her field. She says she was “the first girl in [her] area” when she started as a gas leak investigator and repair person for the National Grid.

“I’ve been with the same company and the United Steelworkers for 33 years,” Pedersen, a member of USW Local 120124 says.  

When her workforce was tested by a seven-month long work stoppage recently, Pedersen counted herself lucky to have a powerful tool on her side: her Union Plus mortgage.  Lisa Petersen

Pedersen and her husband refinanced their house around 2005 with the Union Plus Mortgage Program. A major draw was the payment assistance program.  

“I heard about the Mortgage Assistance Program, which helps make payments when you’re out of work,” Pedersen recalls. “I had seen the difficulties for other people during a prior work stoppage and heard about the Union Plus strike benefits.”  

The Union Plus Mortgage Assistance Program provides interest-free loans and grants to help union members make mortgage payments when they’re disabled, unemployed, furloughed, locked out or on strike. Eligible members must have had a Union Plus mortgage for at least a year.

A Mortgage Assistance strike grant ended up covering Pedersen’s mortgage during three critical months in the winter, when her husband wasn’t working his seasonal job as a lobsterman. 

“I’m blown away by the Mortgage Assistance Program,” Pedersen says. “I want people to understand how much you gave to us. I’m so grateful.” 

She considers the Union Plus Mortgage Program to be a unique asset of her union membership.  

“Having this program available is invaluable. If there’s something like that offered to you, you have to have it,” Pedersen emphasizes.  

To learn more about the Union Plus Mortgage Program and its associated benefits, visit unionplus.org/mortgage.  




Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor Jim McKay

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222