We realize this announcement is a lengthy one. Furthermore, we recognize that you are likely on information overload already. That being said, please review the following information, as it is timely and relevant to all of us. There is so much going on at the same time and it is very important to us in HR that you are fully informed!
When you are finished reading, scroll all the way down for the newest update of our employee trivia!
Our office has received quite a few questions about mask-wearing, symptom reporting and confidentiality surrounding testing. Our Reopening Plan, which was reviewed and approved by State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, goes into details regarding these policies, and we ask that everybody read it. But to reiterate, here are some answers to questions we most frequently received from our constituents:
- Appropriate face covering (multilayered masks that cover nose and mouth and fit snugly against the side of the face) are required when entering and exiting buildings, in public areas and when meeting or working with others indoors, and anytime at least six-foot physical distancing cannot be maintained outdoors.
- On a daily basis, before coming into work, employees must complete the Symptom Monitoring Checklist and follow the clear instructions on it (i.e. notify your supervisor and do not come to campus if you are experiencing any symptoms). Should an employee start experiencing symptoms while at work, it is absolutely essential that the employee leaves campus immediately and notifies the supervisor of the symptoms.
- When a positive or a presumed positive case is identified, the community receives an email regarding the locations frequently visited by the individual who tested positive or is presumed to be positive. Information is provided to protect the health of our community and prevent further spread of the virus. Individual’s name or personally identifiable information is not released, to protect the privacy. Disparate treatment of our constituents based on knowledge (or the assumption) of positive or presumed positive test results is not proper or allowed.
As noted previously, we are constantly receiving expert updates and advice from local, state, and national authorities. Our goal is to keep you informed, and to that effect, we will hold monthly virtual Town Hall meetings on this topic. You will have two opportunities to attend next such Town Hall meeting, on September 8th at 10:30 am and September 9th at 2:00 pm. An email containing the link to these meetings will be sent to your email addresses a week ahead of time. As we did previously, we will ensure there is a space available for employees who do not have the technology to join us in person.
In early May of this year, we have been tasked with revising our Sexual Misconduct Policy to comply with newly issued federal regulations surrounding Title IX. A committee was formed for this purpose, and after a few meetings and expert consultation, it was decided that combining the Harassment and Discrimination Policy and Sexual Misconduct Policy was the most balanced and appropriate way to do this. The Sexual Misconduct Policy and Harassment and Discrimination Policy have therefore been replaced with a single unified protocol for managing, investigating, and adjudicating all reports of harassment and discrimination, including sexual misconduct.
Additionally, the policy was separated into three documents – each affecting students, staff, and faculty respectively. Faculty must vote on their policy before it is effective and included into the Faculty Handbook. Student and staff policies are effective immediately. The Harassment and Discrimination Policy for staff can be accessed on the Human Resources web page, and all staff are required to review it as soon as practicable. Training will be offered shortly through United Educators. Should you have any questions regarding this policy, please do not hesitate to reach out to us in Human Resources.
H-SC HEROES PROGRAM
Our H-SC Heroes program is almost concluded! If you have not already, be sure you email Meghan Allen to find out how you can contribute to our current charity partner - Farmville Cares! It is super easy – volunteer for 2 hours or give a financial donation in the amount of twice your hourly pay! Staff who participate will be awarded 4 hours of vacation time to use between now and December 31st and participating faculty will be entered into a $200 gift card raffle. So far, we had 13 faculty and 25 staff contribute their time or money, for a total of more than 40 hours and nearly $2,000 donated!