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Human Resources

Please see below for Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 regarding Human Resources.

I’m working remotely. What are best practices I should keep in mind?

Continue to discuss expectations around working from home with your manager. Information Technology Services encourages you to use the available tools which aid in remote work. These tools include the myDrake campus portal, Microsoft Teams, and cloud storage through OneDrive. ITS has prepared knowledge base information about using these technologies to work remotely. Further information is available for staff and for faculty.

Human Resources has prepared extensive information about the temporary telecommuting policy applicable to the COVID-19 outbreak. Please see Telecommuting Best Practices for Employees and Telecommuting Best Practices for Managers.

What requirements will I need to follow if I am working on campus?

Drake University has implemented a Return to Work Policy that includes body temperature self-monitoring and face covering requirement.

Self Monitoring and Reporting 

All Drake University employees (including faculty, staff, and sub-contracted employees) are required to measure and record their own body temperature from home or at one of several self-serve stations on the Drake campus for indications of COVID-19 like illness prior to working on campus. Some departments, such as Facilities and Public Safety, may develop their own temperature monitoring process requirements consistent with this policy. 

Employees must notify the Director of Environmental Health and Safety using thisform and notify their manager of any of the following:  

  1. Any symptoms currently considered to be associated with COVID-19 as indicated by the CDC at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html, including a temperature of 100.4 or higher, 
  2. A personal diagnosis of COVID-19, or 
  3. Close personal contact (defined as being within 6 feet for 15 minutes or longer) with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19. 

Employees reporting any of the above will not be allowed to report to work until personally notified that it is safe to do so by the University’s Department of Environmental Health and Safety.   

Mandatory Face Coverings  

All faculty and staff—along with students, vendors, and visitors—are required to wear masks or other face coverings while in campus buildings unless they are alone in their offices or participating in activities where a mask cannot be worn (e.g., eating, drinking, playing a musical instrument, etc.), and on-campus grounds when a social distance of at least six feet cannot be maintained. 

My child’s school has a Return to Learn plan that involves remote learning, and I’m concerned about my responsibilities at home. Will the University offer flexibility to help me remain in paid status?

We know many employees are concerned as schools are implementing Return to Learn plans. While in some cases telecommuting will allow parents to be home with their children during this time, there may be other situations where telecommuting is not possible. For the duration of this Coronavirus response, therefore, the staff sick leave policy is being adjusted to allow accrued sick leave to be taken for this circumstance.

Drake has implemented a Supplemental Paid Leave plan that provides additional time off for situations related to COVID-19.

Are healthy employees allowed to stay home to avoid contracting Coronavirus?

A healthy employee wishing to stay home to avoid possible exposure may use vacation and personal time for this purpose, subject to normal departmental processes for requesting such leave.

I’m not feeling well but my team members are counting on me to be at work. What should I do?

If you are sick, please stay home. It is important that you take care of yourself and don’t put others at risk by coming to work.

Does Drake’s medical plan coverage offer a tele-health option?

Yes. Doctors on Demand provides virtual visits with Board-certified doctors via live video from your smartphone, tablet, or computer.

What if I have used all my paid time off and I or a family member contracts Coronavirus?

First, ensure you understand all the paid time off options available to you. In the event you have exhausted all paid leave, including Supplemental Paid Leave, you may request unpaid leave and/or may qualify for job-protected leave through the Family and Medical Leave Act policy. The Human Resources partner assigned to your department may be contacted for more information. As the Coronavirus pandemic unfolds, the University will provide further guidance on any changes to normal paid leave practices.

What if I have or care for someone with a compromised immune system or respiratory condition?

The University recommends employees with specific health concerns contact their healthcare provider for medical advice tailored to their individual situations. In the event an employee may have a compromised immune system or respiratory condition, and is advised by a medical professional to avoid public spaces rather than risk potential exposure to the virus, the employee should present documentation to HR, who will explore options with the employee, as it would with any other accommodation request.

What happens during the HR accommodation process?

Human Resources works interactively with an employee and the manager to determine a reasonable and appropriate accommodation, based upon medical information the employee may be asked to obtain from the health care provider. Any medical information and documentation is maintained by HR as confidential.

Remind me when Drake staff sick leave may be used.

Your accrued sick leave is available when a health condition prevents you from working. In addition, accrued sick leave is available when your immediate family member’s illness or injury requires your care. Immediate family members are defined as your spouse/partner, child, mother, father, brother or sister (or the same relatives of your spouse/partner). As described in a previous question and answer, the staff sick leave policy has been adjusted to allow accrued sick leave to be taken for childcare responsibilities resulting from schools being impacted due to the Coronavirus situation. Follow your department’s usual notification procedures.

Drake has also implemented a Supplemental Paid Leave plan that provides additional time off for situations related to COVID-19.

I feel anxious about the Coronavirus situation. Are resources available to help?

Drake offers an Employee Assistance Program that’s available for all faculty, staff and their family members.

Employee & Family Resources may be reached by calling 800-327-4692 or online at www.efr.org/myeap.

I'm hosting or attending an event on campus. What should I do?

Capacity for on-campus events will be limited to allow for all attendees to engage in social distancing of at least six feet or to limit room capacity to fifty percent, whichever is less. All proposed events are subject to review of a completed risk assessment and distancing plan. 

You may submit a request by e-mailing the Office of Events at roomreservations@drake.edu.

Do I need to wear a protective face mask while on campus?

All faculty and staff—along with students, vendors, and visitors—are required to wear masks or other face coverings while in campus buildings unless they are alone in their offices or participating in activities where a mask cannot be worn (e.g., eating, drinking, playing a musical instrument, etc.), and on-campus grounds when a social distance of at least six feet cannot be maintained. A Drake University mask will be distributed to all faculty and staff members.

What is the University requirement for monitoring body temperature?

All Drake University employees (including faculty, staff, and sub-contracted employees) are required to measure and record their own body temperature from home or at one of several self-serve stations on the Drake campus for indications of COVID-19 like illness prior to working on campus. Some departments, such as Facilities and Public Safety, may develop their own temperature monitoring process requirements consistent with this policy.  

Employees must notify the Director of Environmental Health and Safety using this form and notify their manager of any of the following:  

  1. Any symptoms currently considered to be associated with COVID-19 as indicated by the CDC at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html, including a temperature of 100.4 or higher, 
  2. A personal diagnosis of COVID-19, or 
  3. Close personal contact (defined as being within 6 feet for 15 minutes or longer) with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19. 

Employees reporting any of the above will not be allowed to report to work until personally notified that it is safe to do so by the University’s Department of Environmental Health and Safety.

Could Drake lift the employee mandatory retirement plan contribution requirement?

The Drake Retirement Plan is a mandatory plan under the IRS regulations, which allow employees to maximize their savings for retirement. It is a pre-tax benefit, which allows employees to save for retirement on a tax-deferred basis. That is a significant benefit that would be lost if employees did not contribute and sought to invest on a post-tax basis with their own advisor.  

The decision has been made to continue the employee contribution for two reasons. First, continued participation will help advance retirement readiness for employees. The mandatory contribution nature of the plan means that continued participation is a key component of the savings tool. Second, because the plan is a mandatory plan under IRS regulations, participation for all eligible employees is required. The process for dis-enrolling and re-enrolling would jeopardize that status and subject the plan to potential regulatory hurdles in the future.

Should I report personal travel out of state?

Faculty and staff should share any personal out of state travel plans by submitting the information to Environmental Health and Safety via the form at the link below.

Report Out-of-State Travel

 

Resource Documents:

Health & Wellness

Health and Wellness Guide

Insurance Information

Wellmark Coverage Information

Telecommuting

Telecommuting: Best Practices for Employees

Telecommuting: Best Practices for Managers

Temporary Telecommuting Protocol

Temporary Telecommuting Agreement

Temporary Telecommuting Equipment

Working on Campus

Temperature Self-Monitoring and Face Mask Requirement

Questions? Contact us with any COVID-19 questions.

Email: covid19@drake.edu