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Under-pressure XPO Logistics expands health benefits


  • Greenwich-based XPO Logistics announced Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 expanded health benefits for workers who are pregnant or new parents. Photo: File Photo

    Greenwich-based XPO Logistics announced Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 expanded health benefits for workers who are pregnant or new parents.

    Greenwich-based XPO Logistics announced Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 expanded health benefits for workers who are pregnant or new parents.


    Photo: File Photo

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Greenwich-based XPO Logistics announced Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 expanded health benefits for workers who are pregnant or new parents.

Greenwich-based XPO Logistics announced Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 expanded health benefits for workers who are pregnant or new parents.



Photo: File Photo


GREENWICH — Transportation-and-logistics giant XPO Logistics, which has come under Congressional scrutiny for alleged workplace violations including pregnancy discrimination, announced Wednesday expanded health benefits for workers who are expecting or are new parents.

Through a partnership with digital health care firm Maven Clinic, XPO said its new free program offers U.S. employees and their families mobile-app access to a network of more than 1,400 health practitioners across 20 specialties, including fertility, lactation, infant sleep, nutrition and mental health. Employees can also sign up with a “personal care coordinator” to support them during and after pregnancy.


“This virtual clinic gives our employees 24-7, on-demand access to an array of the services that women and their families seek most during and after pregnancy,” Josephine Berisha, XPO’s senior vice president of compensation and benefits, said in a statement. “Expert digital health care is an important, additional convenience for new parents, especially working mothers who are balancing the demands of home and work.”





The services extend to parents who are planning to adopt or become surrogates and also cover women who have miscarriages.

In addition, employees interested in fertility treatments or egg-freezing could receive discounts on services and up to six months of support from specialists for certain services.

XPO has faced increasing Congressional attention since The New York Times, Los Angeles Times and PBS’ “NewsHour,” reported last fall on allegations of pregnancy discrimination, sexual harassment, unsafe working conditions and suppression of labor organization involving XPO employees across the country.

Last November, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., joined eight other senators to launch an investigation of XPO.

In a statement Wednesday, Blumenthal expressed doubts about the impact of the new program, although he said he wanted to keep working with XPO to ensure workers and their families receive the support they need during and after pregnancies.

“Although I appreciate XPO’s stated intent to improve benefits and workplace policies for women and families, this new program still leaves many questions unanswered,” Blumenthal said. “How many workers will actually benefit? Will access to this app make a meaningful difference if underlying workplace policies remain?”


Two weeks later, nearly 100 Democratic U.S. representatives — including Connecticut’s Joe Courtney, Rosa DeLauro, Elizabeth Esty and John Larson — signed a letter seeking a similar inquiry.

“Hundreds and thousands of workers could be at risk at XPO Logistics facilities if the aforementioned allegations are accurate,” the Congressional members wrote in the letter, which asked for a hearing on the company. “While the current issues may be local and isolated, further investigation and oversight should be executed to ensure that hundreds and thousands of workers nationwide are not at further risk.”

Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, whose district covers most of Fairfield County, did not sign the letter, but a spokesman later said that he supported its goals.

On the same day as the Congressional letter, XPO said it would investigate the reported mistreatment of pregnant workers at a Memphis, Tenn., warehouse. Two women said they had miscarriages last year while working at the Memphis plant, which was investigated by The New York Times.

At the same time, XPO announced a new policy for the care and support of pregnant workers that includes paid family leave, pregnancy and postpartum benefits, and flexible working arrangements. Eligible workers would receive their regular base wages while they used their accommodations and would still qualify for pay increases during that time.

XPO is headquartered at 5 American Lane, in the northwest corner of Greenwich. It operates in 32 countries, handling 7 billion inventory units each day, according to its website. It employs about 98,000.

It was ranked No. 186 on last year’s Fortune 500 list.


pschott@scni.com; 203-964-2236; Twitter: @paulschott