Jennifer Lucas, Co-Director of Human Resources, informs Gettysburg College employees about the end of the employee de-densification period and the process for employees returning to work on campus.
In November, I wrote to you regarding a de-densification of the employee population due to an increase in COVID-19 positive cases in our surrounding communities. During this period of de-densification, all employees who were eligible to work remotely were asked to do so. The de-densification period will end as of Monday, January 11. To prepare for the spring semester and comply with the Commonwealth’s protocols, we will implement a staggered return to work schedule starting January 11. For employees scheduled to assist with opening and move-in, you are expected to return to campus the week of January 11. This includes such groups as Facilities, Dining, Public Safety, Health Services, and other areas necessary for the opening of campus operations to our students.
All other employees who moved to remote work in November are permitted to return to campus on Monday, January 18. Please be advised that any employee given prior authorization to work on campus is not required to wait until their testing date and can continue to work on campus. As we return to campus, we encourage offices to offer a physical presence allowing accessibility for our students. In that spirit, offices should use good judgment and continue to create flexible/rotating schedules as a means of limiting the density of physical spaces. Also, please refer to the College’s Current COVID-19 Workplace Guidelines for any questions relating to plans and protocols. Please see the quick summary of our workplace guidelines below:
Working in the office
All employees should follow the below guidelines for interacting within campus workspaces:
- If you work in an open environment, even if partitions are constructed, be sure to maintain at least 6 feet of distance from co-workers. Shared spaces such as break areas and conference rooms should have measures in place to reduce capacity and facilitate physical distancing.
- If you work in a closed office, no more than one other person should join you unless the required 6 feet of distancing can be consistently maintained.
- If more than one person is in any room, face coverings should be worn by all employees, at all times. Face coverings are not required if you are working alone in a confined office space, but partitioned work areas are considered to be open environments, and face coverings are therefore required.
- Face coverings should be worn by any employee in a reception/receiving area. Face coverings should be worn when walking through hallways where others travel and in break rooms, conference rooms, and other meeting locations.
- Follow safety signage and directions for ingress and egress posted throughout campus facilities.
- Remove communal items, such as magazines and pens.
Workspace disinfection and hygiene
Employees are expected to clean their workspaces daily. This includes desks, tables, doorknobs, light switches, phones, and computer equipment. Cleaning supplies have been provided to each office area by the Facilities Department. If an office space runs out of cleaning supplies, please contact Service Response at x6700 to request more supplies.
When you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, or cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow. Tissues should always be discarded in the trash and you should immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap is unavailable, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
Employees should consider the size of the restroom they are using to ensure at least 6 feet of distance can be maintained between individuals within the space. After using the restroom, wash your hands thoroughly for 20 seconds afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus. If paper towels are available, use a clean one to turn off the water and a clean one to open the door. Dispose of the paper towel(s) into a proper receptacle when exiting the restroom.
Wherever possible, meetings should continue to be held using remote platforms, such as Zoom, WebEx, or another video conferencing tool. Additionally, you are encouraged to communicate with your colleagues and supervisors as needed by email, instant message, telephone, or other available technology rather than in person.
I look forward to a new semester and our work together. Take good care!
Jennifer Lucas, SPHR, SHRM-SCP
Co-Director of Human Resources