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AFSCME Advantage Credit Card Disability Grant Helps In-Home Care Provider Pay for Medical Bills


Brenda Gholston devoted seven years of her life as an in-home care provider with American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (UDW/AFSCME) Local 3930 in Modesto, CA; a selfless job that required atypical hours and great patience. About one year ago, she went to the doctor for what she thought was a routine check-up, which turned out to lead to a much more serious turn of events. She learned that she had contracted a severe infection and treatment was not only expensive, but time-consuming. Brenda ended up taking off five months from work to recover fully — a decision that she knew could have been detrimental to her finances and career.

She was fearful and looking for financial assistance options when she happened to come across a story about a woman who received a Hardship Assistance Grant1 from AFSCME Advantage.

“The United Domestic Workers of America sends me a newspaper every month and I read about this woman who had lost her job and was about to have her lights turned off but was saved with a special grant from Union Plus because she had an AFSCME Advantage Credit Card2,” said Brenda.

“After I read that story, I wanted to see if I could apply for some kind of grant because I had just left work because of my illness. I have an AFSCME Advantage Credit Card. I was wondering how I was going to pay for my medical bills,” she said. Brenda called the number on the back of her card and was given information on how to apply.

Today Brenda is fully recovered and she used the $1,600 grant she received from Union Plus to pay for medical expenses and prescriptions not covered by her insurance provider.
Do you carry an AFSCME Advantage Credit Card? After three months, eligible cardholders may have access to exclusive hardship assistance grants including Job Loss, Disability, and Hospital Grants. All approved grants are paid to the cardholder by check and never have to be paid back. Learn more about the credit card choices and benefits by visiting


1These hardship assistance grants are provided and administered through the AFL-CIO Mutual Benefit Plan (“The Plan”). Grant amounts can range from $300 to $2,700 and vary by grant type. Specific eligibility criteria may vary by grant type. Certain restrictions, limitations, and qualifications apply, including (but not limited to):

  • A cardholder may only receive a grant if his Union Plus Credit Card Account was in good standing at time the loss event occurred.
  • A cardholder may only receive one grant of each grant type for each Union Plus Credit Card Account.
  • A cardholder may only receive one grant of each grant type for any unique loss event, even across multiple accounts.
  • A cardholder may only apply for loss events that occurred at least 3 months after becoming a cardholder.

Additional information about these hardship assistance grants and eligibility criteria can be obtained at or by calling Union Privilege at 202-293-5330. Cardholders will receive full details when they receive their card. Certain administrative responsibilities for the Plan have been delegated to Union Privilege. Union Privilege is the non-profit organization established to create and oversee member benefit programs for working families. Grants may not be offered in every state. Coverage may be underwritten and managed by companies that are not affiliated with MasterCard or Capital One, N.A.

2Credit approval required. Terms and conditions apply. See for details. Union Plus Credit Cards are issued by Capital One, N.A., pursuant to a license from MasterCard International Incorporated.