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Season 5, Episode 65

NLO and BCBS focused on eliminating women’s health inequalities

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Guest Name:

Merrilee Logue

Guest Website:

BCBS NLO 

Guest Social Media:

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Mentions:

To round out our coverage of Women’s History Month, Merrilee Logue, Executive Director for the Blue Cross Blue Shield’s (BCBS) National Labor Office (NLO), joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss women’s and health equity.

The NLO acts as a liaison between unions and its 14 Strategic Alliances to meet the needs of the labor community. As a healthcare partner to one in three Americans, the NLO believes everyone should have access to high-quality healthcare regardless of gender, sex or ethnicity. These inequities are a focus for Logue and the NLO, and she talked about her experience of being a woman in healthcare and labor, an industry generally dominated by men, and many of the disparity she has faced.

Taking on gender disparity is near and dear to Logue, and her past experiences are helping guide the NLO’s efforts to eliminate this issue. One way they are doing so is through the BCBS Women’s Resource Group, which provides a forum for women and allies to network, support and learn from each other and contribute to the advancement of women in the organization. This program has made an impact within the NLO’s Board of Directors, as Logue discussed the Committee’s first female Vice Chair, Tera Clizbe, who is slated to become the first female Chair in 2026.

As a top priority for the BCBS and NLO, Logue discussed their impact on maternal health equity, including how they are addressing mortality rates during childbirth, as black women are three times more likely to die due to complications. To address this, Logue discussed their goal to reduce these racial disparities by 50 percent in the next five years through educational opportunities and maternal health programs. These programs are working to provide all women within unions, regardless of race, the same protections and healthcare services before, during and after pregnancy. For more information on the health equity programs offered by BCBS and NLO please visit, bcbs.com/healthequity.

For more from on how the NLO is addressing women’s equity, please listen to the show above.


America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.

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