At UNCG we recognize there are many unanswered questions and unexpected consequences related to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation. While there is much we cannot predict, we are working hard to address some of the key issues and challenges we believe are likely to impact our students, staff, and faculty. Ongoing communication is an important part of our response as an instituiton, so please continue to monitor your email and the UNCG COVID-19 website.
A team of individuals from across the campus is currently planning for several possible scenarios. At this point we are seeing isolated, manageable impacts to our campus, and we are able to exercise some flexibility based on personal considerations. We recognize the situation may change and we are building plans for more significant impacts that may include cancelling or postponing events, determining which employees are required for certain critical operations, and potentially suspending classes. Some of these decisions will be ours to make, while others will likely involve public health and/or UNC System officials. It is prudent to plan now, so we are ready for whatever circumstances present themselves to our campus.
One key priority relates to managing decisions around mandatory employee status, working from home, and implications related to possible operational changes at UNCG. We are also working to identify how existing policies related to leave, communicable disease, and university closure apply to this situation. We are committed to being as flexible and compassionate as possible as this situation unfolds.
We are in the process of determining which functions, and therefore which employees, would be considered essential given the most likely scenarios related to COVID-19. Supervisors will soon receive this guidance and should immediately notify any employees who are considered mandatory should the University reduce operations or close. The notification should include whether the employee would be expected to report to campus or remain working in a remote location.
It is recommended that employees who can work from home test the functionality of their ability to work remotely now, prior to an event occurring. This will help identify any additional resources and/or access needed to complete critical functions.
Supervisors are encouraged to be flexible with employees to determine remote working options and use of sick leave should they show symptoms of COVID-19. Since these symptoms are similar to those of many other illnesses, employees are advised to seek treatment prior to reporting back to the workplace. Supervisors should also be aware that individuals with pre-existing health conditions that make them particularly vunerable to COVID-19 may be advised by their physicians to remain home.
Employees who have traveled in countries considered to be Level 2 or 3 by the CDC are instructed to self-quarantine for a 14 day period to avoid potential spread of the virus. Again, supervisors are encouraged to be flexible with remote working arrangements and use of leave.
Any UNCG faculty or staff member who self-quarantines or is quarantined or isolated at the direction of public health officials should contact the Benefits Office (336-334-5009) or firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible to discuss leave options available.
We understand that this is a time of uncertainty and concern for many. Please continue to let us know if you have questions, and we will continue to provide information in as timely a manner as possible. Please pay close attention to email and notifications in the UNCG Mobile App, follow updates on our website, and communicate regularly with your supervisors so you can stay informed and prepared to navigate this fast-moving situation.