Like other agencies in the state of North Carolina, ECSU will be phasing a gradual return of employees to campus while ensuring appropriate distancing, cleaning, and sanitizing of workplace surfaces, and the availability of personal protective equipment for certain on-campus employees. Supervisors will decide which employees will return to work on campus. Supervisors are encouraged to limit the number of employees in small office spaces to meet distancing requirements. It is expected that the majority of employees will continue working remotely (full-time or intermittently) this fall. Supervisors have several strategies to ensure their units are managed effectively and safely for employees who are in the office. These options include, but are not limited to, using technology to limit face-to-face meetings, alternating and staggering employee work schedules, using directional signage and floor markers to manage traffic flow, and reconfiguring workstations and departmental lobbies to create barriers. The UNC System has provided guidance to supervisors, which gives them information to consider a return to normal operations.
Generally, staff will be among the first to report back to campus, beginning in June, and through July. Additional employee groups, like faculty and those who work in support of teaching, research, and on-campus student support, will follow. Please keep in mind that some employees may be asked to continue to work remotely to promote distancing.
PPE for Employees
The university is obtaining the requisite PPE (personal protective equipment) for specific employees whose job requires continuous engagement with community members. The university is procuring face shields, masks, gloves, and other PPE that will give employees the confidence to do their jobs effectively. Supervisors will be provided with the requisite PPE that will assist them with fulfilling their job requirements. All employees, no matter their job responsibilities, will be able to receive a reusable mask, if they do not wish to use their personal face mask/covering.
Workplace Accommodation Support
If an employee requests an accommodation that is based on medical circumstances, they should use the ADA accommodations process managed by the Office of Human Resources. This process will allow employees who self-identify as being high risk for contracting COVID-19 or for more severe medical issues if COVID-19 is contracted or who are unable to work because of a physical or mental medical condition to seek accommodations. This process is confidential, and their medical information will not be shared with their supervisor. Accommodations could include an altered work schedule, assignment to a remote work schedule, or a changed office depending on the medical information received.
If there are requests for flexibility for reasons other than medical circumstances (e.g., childcare matters, age, caretaking responsibilities for or cohabitating with a high-risk individual), employees are encouraged to work with their supervisors to identify solutions that balance individual needs with the university as a whole. In addition, the UNC System has provided a brochure for employees should they have questions about leave entitlements, return-to-work expectations, and accommodations.