Communication

Communication

Human Resource is communicating information related to UNC System COVID-19 guidance.

January 2021

July 2020

Paid Administrative Leave - July 1 Guidance
Effective July 1 until revised or rescinded

June 2020

Paid Administrative Leave - June Guidance
Effective June 1-June 30

If you have questions, email HRLeaveInquiries@uncarts.onmicrosoft.com and we will respond as soon as possible.

May 2020

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UNCSA Employees:

I hope you and your family and friends are well.

Please take a moment to review the following new information regarding your work during the pandemic.

The COVID-19 Special Work and Leave Provisions for April (see "Administrative Leave/Mandatory Employees" Update published March 31, 2020) were recently extended by the UNC System Office through May 8. After consulting with the Office of State Human Resources (OSHR), the UNC System Office has now provided updated guidance, effective May 9 until further revised or rescinded.

The provisions in the May 9 guidance are substantially the same as those in the April guidance, including the availability of special paid administrative leave in eligible circumstances. The May 9 guidance also includes a more detailed summary of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and its administration; for more information, see "Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) Leave Provisions" (effective May 1, 2020) (PDF) and the UNC Personnel Policy 300.2.15[R].

The federal FFCRA was signed into law on March 18 and is effective April 1-Dec. 31, 2020. The law provides a time-limited allocation of emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave coverage for employees who cannot work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The provisions of this law apply to both permanent and currently employed non-student temporary employees for time missed due to qualifying circumstances beginning May 1, 2020.

On a related note, Gov. Roy Cooper has issued an executive order, effective at 5 p.m. Friday, May 8, which allows North Carolinians to move into Phase 1 of a three-phased approach to slowly lift statewide restrictions he issued on March 27 as the state continues to battle COVID-19. For UNCSA, the move into Phase 1 has no significant impact on our operations. Employees should continue teleworking and remote work arrangements where possible, and only mandatory employees who have been directed by their supervisors to support essential operations should report to campus.

At a future date, possibly in late May or early June, we expect that the UNC System Office will develop detailed guidelines regarding incremental return to work onsite for its constituent institutions, including UNCSA, based on guidance received from the OSHR, N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, and further executive orders.

I know this is a challenging and confusing time for all of you. Remember that we are all in this together, and that your HR team is here to support you. You may email questions related to this communication to HRLeaveInquiries@uncarts.onmicrosoft.com; we will respond to your questions as soon as possible.

Until we are together again, be safe and stay healthy.

Take care,
Angela L. Mahoney, SHRM-CP, PHR
Director of Human Resources

N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper has signed an executive order, effective at 5 p.m. today, Friday, May 8, that will allow North Carolinians to move into Phase 1 of a three-phased approach to slowly lift statewide restrictions he issued on
March 27 as the state continues to battle COVID-19.

The statewide stay-at-home order will still be in place, but restrictions on leaving home will be loosened as more business are allowed to open. People will be able to leave their homes for commercial activity at any business that is open.

Retail businesses will be allowed to open at 50% capacity with social distancing and frequent cleaning. Other businesses remain closed, including personal care businesses, entertainment venues, and gyms. Restaurants and bars may continue to offer drive-through, takeout and delivery only.

Though small outdoor gatherings will be allowed, gatherings of more than 10 people generally are still prohibited. The opening of state parks and trails is encouraged.

Child care facilities will be open, with strict cleaning protocols, to serve families of parents who are working or looking for work.

Teleworking is still encouraged for businesses that can practice it. A memorandum from the UNC System’s Office of Human Resources will follow with more details.

See more on what's new in Phase 1 (PDF).

The governor’s order is in effect until 5 p.m. Friday, May 22; however, Phase 2 will start only if public health data and indicators meet the governor’s plan.

According to public health officials, there have been more than 300 reported cases of COVID-19 in Forsyth County, with five deaths. Statewide, there have been more than 13,000 cases and more than 500 deaths to date.

For more information on COVID-19 and how it affects UNCSA, please visit our website, uncsa.edu/coronavirus for updates.


Today, Thursday, April 23, Gov. Roy Cooper extended North Carolina’s stay-at-home order until May 8, in an effort to combat the ongoing spread of COVID-19. The order had been set to expire on April 29.

Gov. Cooper said that North Carolina will need more widespread COVID-19 testing, tracking of those who have had contact with those who are ill, and slowed case and hospitalization rate trends before restrictions can ease. He also laid out a three-stage plan for reopening the state once those criteria have been met.

Winston-Salem’s stay-at-home restrictions were already extended to May 7.

According to public health officials, there have been 143 reported cases of COVID-19 in Forsyth County, with five deaths. Statewide, there have been 7,759 cases and 275 deaths to date.
 
As previously reported, UNCSA will be online only for the remainder of the semester, with faculty continuing to deliver online instruction off-campus, as much as possible.

Non-mandatory staff continue to telework where possible, and mandatory employees continue to report to work as approved by their supervisors. The special work and leave provisions as communicated on March 31 will remain in place through April 30; we are expecting continued guidance from the UNC System Office for the month of May and will communicate any information we receive.

The small number of residential students who remain on campus as granted by exception for extenuating circumstances may stay on campus, but must continue to adhere to this stay-at-home order.

Remember, there are several exemptions to the stay-at-home orders, but only for essential services and activities, such as visiting healthcare providers and pharmacies, getting groceries and takeout, and taking care of pets. For more detailed information, see the governor's office's FAQs regarding this order.
 
For more information on COVID-19 and how it affects UNCSA, please visit our website, uncsa.edu/coronavirus for updates.

 

April 2020

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The COVID-19 Special Work and Leave Provisions effective April 1 – April 30, 2020 will remain in effect and have been extended through May 8, 2020 with the additional provision of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFRCA).

 

March 2020

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To: University Employees

COVID-19 Special Work and Leave Provisions are effective April 1 – April 30, 2020.

UNC System Interim President Bill Roper has approved special emergency provisions for SHRA and non-faculty EHRA employees who cannot work during the COVID-19 pandemic. These provisions supersede all regular policies and can be changed by Interim President Roper at any time based on the development of the System's COVID-19 response and the operational needs of UNCSA.

One of these provisions is special paid administrative leave. Paid administrative leave is leave that you may take with pay if your circumstance is included in the categories below. It does not count against other categories of leave. paid administrative leave must occur within the employee's regular work schedule (or typical work schedule for temporary employees as determined by their supervisor). Paid administrative leave doesn't include overtime or other special pay provisions and is time that does not have to be made up.

Paid Administrative Leave for Permanent Employees

Supervisors should give every possible consideration to employees who request to use paid administrative leave. Supervisors also have the discretion to deny or defer special leave provisions if an employee is deemed mandatory (position addresses urgent public health needs, public safety, or critical infrastructure needs).

Categories that enable an employee to request paid administrative leave are listed and explained below:

High-Risk Employees: Special consideration should be given to employees who are determined to be "high risk" for contracting COVID-19. Supervisors may allow these employees to telework or approve paid administrative leave.

Employees in the "high risk" category meet one of the following conditions:

  • Are over 65 years of age
  • Have underlying health conditions, including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes
  • Have a weakened immune system
  • Are providing care to someone at high risk

Employees with Child Care and Elder Care Issues: Employees who can't work because they have child care or elder care needs due to COVID-19-related facility closings will receive paid administrative leave for the period of time they are unavailable to work. If more than one person in the household is a state employee, then the employees are expected to work with their supervisor to determine how to allocate paid administrative leave to avoid an inappropriate overlap of leave usage.

Employees Unable to Telework: Employees may receive paid administrative leave if they cannot telework because their position and duties cannot be performed remotely, and reasonable alternate remote work is not feasible or productive.

Employees Who Are Sick from Cold, Flu or COVID-19: Employees who are sick due to symptoms of a cold, flu or COVID-19 or who are caring for a dependent with such symptoms may receive paid administrative leave. All other absences will utilize regular forms of leave such as sick, vacation and bonus leave, or shared leave if approved.

Part-Time Employees: For part-time employees with fluctuating schedules, paid administrative leave may be applied, but consideration should be given to the employee's average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed 40 hours per week.

Temporary Employees: Interim Chancellor Brian Cole will continue to offer full or partial special leave provisions to temporary employees (including students and retirees) based on available funds and operational needs.

The Chancellor has the discretion to offer telework to any temporary employees and/or to designate such employees as mandatory to address critical operational needs. If the temporary employee is unable to telework supervisors may discontinue such temporary employees or place them in inactive status.

Employees are not eligible for paid administrative leave if they are already on another pre-approved leave. Employees who were on other pre-approved leave, choose not to work, or are unavailable for reasons other than provided in the special emergency provisions must use the available and applicable leave types:

  • vacation leave
  • parental leave
  • bonus leave
  • compensatory time
  • take leave without pay

Mandatory and Non-Mandatory Employee Designations

Mandatory employees are those employees who are directed by their supervisor to work at specific dates and times on the UNCSA campus and in most circumstances are not eligible for telework. Such employees have been deemed essential to work on-site during the COVID-19 pandemic and include, but are not limited to, positions that relate to:
• public health and patient care
• public safety
• operation of critical infrastructure and facilities
• remaining on-site student and instructional support services

UNCSA maintains a list of mandatory employees required to meet the UNCSA operational needs specific to the COVID-19 pandemic. Supervisors must communicate expectations to mandatory employees. If you aren't sure if you are a mandatory employee, ask your supervisor. Employees' mandatory or non-mandatory status may be changed by supervisors at any time due to the ongoing operational needs of UNCSA and our COVID-19 response.

All non-mandatory employees may continue to be assigned work and are expected to telework, if feasible, given the nature of their position and duties. Supervisors may also reassign an individual to complete other work assignments that are not a part of their normal duties and responsibilities. If employees must take on significantly higher or more complex duties because the employee who normally assumes them is on paid administrative leave due to COVID-19, supervisors may compensate them accordingly for the duration of the assignment if funding is available. Supervisors must gain approval from Human Resources to do so.

Compensatory Time for Mandatory Employees

SHRA and EHRA non-faculty mandatory permanent employees will receive added compensatory time for hours required to be worked on the UNCSA campus, and only for those specific dates and times that such on-site work is required; off-site (teleworking) hours will not be subject to these added special compensation provision. Employees must request approval from their supervisor to take the additional earned compensatory time.

  • Hourly (Fair Labor Standards Act non-exempt) mandatory employees will receive an additional half hour of compensatory leave time for each hour worked on-site. Those employees who work in excess of 40 hours per work week will also receive additional half hours for overtime hours worked. Overtime hours are defined as any hours worked over 40 during a single week, per federal overtime rules.
  • Salaried (Fair Labor Standards Act exempt) mandatory employees will receive an additional half hour of compensatory leave time for each hour worked on-site up to 40 hours in a work week.
  • These special emergency provisions are not intended to be applied to executive or leadership positions. The following positions, even if designated mandatory, are excluded from these special compensation provisions:
    • Tier I and Tier II senior academic and administrative officers
    • Faculty
    • Physicians
    • Directors and deputy directors of major institution- wide or school-wide functions and centers
    • Department and Division heads

These special emergency provisions will be subject to review on April 30, 2020 taking into account continuing developments regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and the availability of funds. We anticipate further guidance as the UNC System Office provides clarity around these provisions in the context of the larger federal CARES Act.

Please email questions related to this memo to HRLeaveInquiries@uncarts.onmicrosoft.com, Human Resources will respond to your question as soon as possible. Director of Human Resources Angela Mahoney will hold a call with supervisors on Wednesday, April 1 at 9:30 a.m. to review this memo and answer questions about mandatory employees and how to facilitate paid administrative leave.

From: Angela Mahoney, Director of Human Resources

 The following are special emergency provisions authorized by the interim president of the University of North Carolina in response to the COVID-19 event. These provisions will be subject to modification or discontinuation by the interim president at any time based on COVID-19 developments and the operational needs of the university. Special paid administrative leave provisions are per the employee's regular work schedule (or typical work schedule for temporary employees as determined by management) and do not include overtime or other special pay provisions.

Administrative Leave (including student and temporary employees) - Administrative paid leave for all mandatory and non-mandatory employees, including temporary and student employees, will be in place for the following situations related to COVID-19 through March 31:

High-Risk Mandatory Employees: Mandatory employees who are determined to be "high risk" for contracting COVID- 19 or experiencing greater complications (i.e., over 65 years of age; have underlying health conditions, including heart disease, lung disease or diabetes; or a weakened immune system) or who are providing care to someone at high risk will be given special consideration for teleworking or administrative leave.

Example: Pat is a mandatory employee who has been assigned to report to work at a particular date and time. Pat is 65 years old and has an underlying lung condition. Because Pat is in a high-risk group for COVID-19 infection, they should be allowed to telework, if feasible; if teleworking is not an option given the nature of the work, then Pat should be granted paid administrative leave.

Employees with Child Care and Elder Care
Issues: Mandatory or non-mandatory employees (including temporary and student employees) who cannot work because they have child care or elder care needs due to COVID-19-related facility closings will receive paid administrative leave for the period of time they are unavailable.

Example: Kim is a non-mandatory employee and a single parent to a kindergarten-age child. With the closure of the public schools, Kim is the sole caregiver to the child during the day. Kim cannot telework during the day due to childcare responsibilities arising from COVID-19 facility closures, but Kim can complete some of work duties by teleworking. Kim arranges with her supervisor to telework 20 hours per week outside her regular work schedule and will receive 20 hours of paid administrative leave for the period of time dedicated to childcare.

Employees Unable to Telework: Non-mandatory employees (including temporary and student employees) who are unable to telework will receive paid administrative leave if they cannot telework because their position duties cannot be performed remotely and reasonable alternate remote work is not feasible or productive.

Example: Sam is a temporary employee who averages about 15 hours of work per week. Sam's duties cannot be performed remotely and are not considered mandatory. Sam would receive paid administrative leave for their regular hours of work using 15 hours per week.

Please note: For part-time employees with irregular schedules, paid administrative leave should consider the employee's average hours per week over the course of a month. In no case shall paid administrative leave exceed 40 hours per week.

Employees Who Are Ill from Cold, Flu or COVID-19: Any mandatory or non-mandatory employees (including temporary and student employees) who are sick due to symptoms of a cold, flu or COVID-19 or who are caring for a dependent with such symptoms will receive paid administrative leave. All other medically related absences will utilize regular forms of leave such as sick, vacation and bonus leave, or shared leave if previously approved.

Example: Terry is a non-mandatory employee who is assigned telework. After two days of working from home, Terry has an accident resulting in injuries that require hospitalization.
Because Terry is unable to work during this time due to nonCOVID-19-related health issues, Terry must take sick leave for the time they were unable to work.

• An Important Note About Those Not Eligible: Non- mandatory employees who were on other pre-approved leave, choose not to work or are unavailable for reasons other than provided for in the special COVID-19 provisions must use available and applicable leave types; e.g. vacation leave, parental leave, bonus leave or compensatory time.

• A Note for Mandatory Employees: There are no special compensation provisions for mandatory employees in effect at this time. This means mandatory employees who must report to campus will be compensated at their regular rate of pay at this time.

• Leave Report Instructions - https://www.uncsa.edu/mysa/human-resources/leave-administration.aspx

From: Angela Mahoney, UNCSA Director of Human Resources

Dear Staff and Faculty,

As you know, the federal and state government’s response to COVID-19 continues to evolve at a rapid pace. Given recent changes, the UNC System has updated its guidance to campuses to include a directive to substantially reduce the number of students in campus housing and to encourage non-mandatory employees to telework if possible. Below is how this will affect UNCSA:

SHRA and non-faculty EHRA non-mandatory employees are expected to work remotely, if possible.

  • Supervisors should allow employees whose jobs can be performed remotely to telework. Teleworking may not be possible for some positions depending on the impact on university operations and especially positions that impact essential functions, such as student services. However, telework is expected where possible. UNCSA has resources for remote working available.
     
  • It is expected that student-facing offices will remain operational remotely, with sufficient onsite staffing to support students who must remain on campus, and all other phones forwarded and email monitored. 
     
  • If not already communicated, supervisors should now inform mandatory employees of their requirement to either work remotely or continue reporting to campus. Due to the unforeseen impact of COVID-19, mandatory status may change throughout the course of the next several weeks and clear communication of employee expectations is vital.
     
  • The UNC System continues to prohibit all university-related travel following CDC guidelines and the further direction of public health officials. University-sponsored travel outside the state of North Carolina, or within the state to gatherings of 100 or more people, shall be suspended unless prior written authorization to travel is given by the chancellor or the provost. This prohibition includes student organizations.
     
  • Refer to this webpage for more information and for instructions regarding self-quarantine.

As we adapt to the rapidly evolving situation, the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, as well as our community at-large, and the delivery of our core academic mission, remain our priority.

Staff, please direct questions about teleworking or administrative leave to Director of Human Resources Angela Mahoney

Faculty, please direct questions to your dean and Director of Faculty Affairs Kim Pauley.

Dear SHRA and EHRA non-faculty employees,

Yesterday Gov. Roy Cooper announced an Executive Order that directed all North Carolina K-12 public schools to close through at least March 30 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We realize that this will present additional challenges for our campus community.

The governor’s Executive Order does not alter the guidance we have received from the UNC System Office, nor any of the instructions we have communicated to you over the past several days.

  • UNCSA and all other UNC institutions remain open, although transitioning to online and alternative course delivery. As indicated in our other communications, we still strongly recommend that all students remain home or return home for the time being, if possible.
  • The Executive Order does not require us to close university housing or suspend dining facilities or other student services. Our dining services are offering takeout options at campus dining facilities.
  • All conferences on campuses that will assemble 100 or more people in a single room for a meeting continue to be suspended.

At this time, it is up to your supervisor/management to decide which employees may telework based on the nature of their work and which may not. Teleworking may not be possible for some positions depending on the impact on university operations and especially positions that impact essential functions, including student services. However, telework is encouraged where possible. UNCSA has resources for remote working available.

Regardless of mandatory or non-mandatory employee status, maximum consideration should be afforded to granting teleworking flexibility to those individuals who are identified by public health authorities as at high risk or who are caregivers for such individuals.

The following provisions apply with reference to employees who need to be out of work due to caring for school-age children or elder care:
When UNCSA is open but an employee, who is a parent (or guardian), is required to stay home with a child or elder (as defined in the FMLA) because of the closure of a day care facility, public school or care institution, the non-mandatory employee may, with approval of the supervisor, be allowed to work at home OR elect to:

  • use vacation leave,
  • use bonus leave,
  • use sick leave,
  • use compensatory leave,
  • take leave without pay, or
  • make up time in accordance with the parameters for making up time during adverse weather. 

These guidelines apply equally to SHRA or EHRA employees and whether an individual is designated as a mandatory or non-mandatory employee.

Given the added anxiety that may be caused by developments associated with COVID-19, we want to remind you of the availability of the UNCSA Employee Assistance Program (EAP) - ComPsych. Call  888-311-4327 TDD:800-697-0353 or register online at guidanceresources.com using Web ID: UNCSA

As always, it is critically important to stay connected and informed during this time. Please regularly check uncsa.edu/coronavirus for updates. Also, monitor your email and UNCSA social media channels as we will update information as frequently and quickly as possible. 

For questions, please contact the Director of Human Resources Angela Mahoney.

Sincerely,
Brian Cole
Interim Chancellor