Head Start of Lane County (the “Agency”) adopts this special alternative work arrangements policy that applies to certain employees who themselves are or who reside with a person deemed by the Center for Disease Control (“CDC”) to have a high risk of severe illness if exposed to COVID-19 (referred to for purposes of this policy as High Risk Employees and Family Members or “HREs”). That list is available online at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/groups-at-higher-risk.html.
As of June 9, 2020, it includes:
- People 60 and older; and/or
- People with underlying medical conditions, including:
- chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
- serious heart conditions
- immunocompromised conditions
- severe obesity
- chronic kidney disease, undergoing dialysis
- liver disease
If you feel that you qualify as high risk or you reside with someone who you feel qualifies and would like to request alternative work arrangements or a leave of absence, please make a request to Benefits Specialist, Sally Pope. While not required, you are encouraged to make this request in writing, and the Agency has provided a Request for HRE Special Alternative Work Arrangement Form for this purpose, and to include relevant information such as:
- The reason you are (or a person you reside with is) an HRE needing an alternative work arrangement. You can simply list the reason, or reasons if there is more than one, listed on the CDC list that applies.
- The alternative work arrangement(s) you are requesting. For example, are you asking for the opportunity to telecommute, a schedule adjustment, special personal protective equipment (PPE) or additional physical distancing commitments, or a leave of absence? You are encouraged to list all possible alternative work arrangements you wish to be considered. Note, the Agency may consider other possible arrangements as well.
The Agency makes determinations about alternative work arrangements on a case-by-case basis considering various factors and based on an individualized assessment of feasibility in each situation.
We will treat information and documentation obtained in this process as confidential, except to the extent that others need to know to evaluate your request or to implement any approved arrangements. Any medical information provided will be kept in a confidential medical file separate from your primary personnel file to ensure that it is protected to the fullest extent possible.
The Agency will not tolerate retaliation against any employee for seeking any special alternative work arrangements in good faith. The Agency expressly prohibits any form of discipline, reprisal, intimidation, or retaliation against any individual for requesting any accommodation in good faith. If you feel that you or another employee may have been subjected to retaliation or other conduct that violates this policy, report it immediately to Directors Tim Rochholz/Human Resources or Charleen Strauch/Operations.
This temporary policy is intended to supplement and not conflict with the Agency’s existing commitment to provide reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities, pregnant employees, and for employee’s religious practices or observances, except where it would create an undue hardship.
For additional information about workplace accommodations generally, contact Benefits Specialist Sally Pope.