Head Start of Lane County takes the health and safety of our employees very seriously. This policy describes the measures we are taking to mitigate the spread of coronavirus (“COVID-19”), while complying with Oregon’s Executive Order 20-12 and following guidance from the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”). The CDC acknowledges that its guidance is based on available information about COVID 19 and is subject to change as additional information becomes available. Head Start of Lane County understands that public health guidance may change and will update accordingly. Head Start will communicate changes to this policy as necessary.
It is important that that we all respond responsibly and transparently to these health precautions. Head Start will always treat your private health and personal information as confidential and with sensitivity.
This policy applies to all of our employees who may work at our sites with office spaces. We strongly recommend that our remote workers review this policy as well, to ensure we collectively and uniformly respond to this challenge.
Head Start designates Charleen Strauch, Operations Director to prepare, implement and enforce its social-distancing policies consistent with guidance from the OHA and the CDC. If you have any questions about this policy, please direct questions to Charleen Strauch, Operations Director.
Below are required actions that employees must take to protect themselves and co-workers from spreading COVID-19. Head Start requests that all of its employees help with our prevention efforts while at work and follow these practices to keep employees safe.
The following social and physical distancing measures are recommended by OHA and the CDC:
- All employees must wear a mask or cloth face covering at all times while in the office, unless an accommodation for employees with a disability or other exemption applies, such as pursuant to state or federal disability laws. Employees concerned about wearing a face mask should contact Human Resources. The CDC recommends that cloth face coverings should fit snugly but comfortably, be secured with ties or ear loops, include multiple layers of fabric, allow for breathing without restriction, and be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape. The CDC provided simple face covering instructions on its website, available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html.
- Maintain a physical distance of at least six (6) feet of other persons at all times.
- Employees may not congregate or loiter in communal spaces, such as the break room, bathroom, hallways, or entryway. Employees should take steps to stay in their private office to the extent possible to maintain appropriate distance from others.
- To maintain physical distancing employees and their managers should consider: alternating work schedules, allowing employees to sign up for days to come in and then allow only a certain number to work in the office space.
- No more than two employees at a time should be in any communal space, such as the break room or bathroom. If two people are in the break room at the same time, employees should still take steps to maintain a physical distance of at least six (6) feet of the other person.
- Employees should limit using shared objects, such as office supplies. Employees should bring personal eating utensils from home and take them home to wash.
- Meetings that would typically be held in person should be done by telephone or video call where possible, especially with non-company parties (e.g., candidate interviews and partners). Employees must get approval by their Supervisor for any in-person meeting. Employees must continue to maintain a physical distance of at least six (6) feet of other persons.
The following information reflects the recommendations by the CDC, OHA and LCPH for when sick employees may return to work based on available information about COVID 19. All health decisions should be made in consultation with the employee’s doctor and local health department.
- If an employee exhibits common symptoms of COVID-19 as identified by the CDC, including cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting, or diarrhea, the employee may not come to the office. The employee must remain at home until (1) they no longer exhibits symptoms for 72 hours without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g., cough suppressants) and has improved in respiratory symptoms; and (2) at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
If an employee tests positive for COVID 19;
- If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, and exhibits symptoms, the employee may not come to the office. The employee must remain at home until (1) he or she no longer exhibits symptoms for 72 hours without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g., cough suppressants) and (2) at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Alternatively, the CDC recommends that employees may return to work if they (1) no longer exhibit symptoms without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom -altering medicines (e.g… cough suppressants) and has improvement in respiratory symptoms: and (2) they received two negative COVID 19 tests in a row, at least 24 hours apart.
- If an employee tests positive for COVID 19 but exhibits no symptoms, the employee may not come to the office. Employees who tested positive for COVID 19 but had no symptoms may return to work when at least 10 days have passed since the date of their first positive test. If an employee does develop symptoms, then the strategies in the preceding bullet for symptomatic individuals should be followed. Alternatively, the CDC recommends that employees may return to work if they received two negative COVID 19 tests in a row, at least 24 hours apart.
Other information for employees:
- If employee develops symptoms while working at the office, the employee must leave the office and report the symptoms to their Supervisor immediately.
- If an employee is sick, the employee may work from home if possible or request sick leave. Please contact your Supervisor for more information.
Policy Council approved 5/21/2020