• What action is the University of West Georgia taking to protect students, faculty, and staff from COVID-19?

    What action is the University of West Georgia taking to protect students, faculty, and staff from COVID-19?

    We continue to monitor COVID-19 and to take safety actions as warranted. We are operating in conjunction with our local, state, and national health agencies to include regular updates with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH), and the University System of Georgia (USG). UWG’s President established a task force composed of leaders from across campus who are working to continually assess the institution’s readiness plans and execute protocols related to medical health and safety, business continuity, emergency preparedness, and travel.

  • When will I be required to return to campus for work?

    When will I be required to return to campus for work?

    Our current plan implements a phased return to in-person operations in three (3) phases to be completed on or around Aug. 3, 2020. Each Vice President will notify his or her faculty and staff based on operational and service needs. Student employees, including student assistants, federal work study students, and graduate assistants, may be included in the divisional return to work plans based on operational and support needs and availability. We will make every effort to provide reasonable notice of at least 3 business days prior to an employee’s return to work date.

  • What is faculty/staff monitoring?

    What is faculty/staff monitoring?

    Faculty/staff monitoring is a process for employees to assess their health status and readiness for work. This process is aligned with CDC and DPH health monitoring guidelines.   

    • Employees must follow self-monitoring and self-reporting protocols on a daily basis.
    • Employees will utilize an electronic self-reporting application for efficient processing and assessment.
    • Employees will self-report by answering the following questions on a daily basis:
      • Do you have a temperature of 100.4F or greater without the use of fever reducing medication?
      • Are you exhibiting any of the symptoms for a potential COVID-19 infection? Symptoms are listed on the CDC website.
      • If yes to above, employee will attest to symptoms being related to COVID-19 or not. 
      • Have you been in contact with an individual who has confirmed positive for COVID-19 in the past 14 days? 
      • Have you traveled outside of the country within the past 14 days?
    • Employees will be provided guidance on steps they need to follow based on their response to these questions. 
  • What is the protocol if an employee tests positive or is diagnosed with COVID-19?

    What is the protocol if an employee tests positive or is diagnosed with COVID-19?

    Employees who receive notification of a positive test for COVID-19 should follow the COVID-19 Reporting Process outlined below. UWG officials will notify GDPH, which will begin contact tracing, and individuals who the affected employee may have come into contact will be notified. UWG Human Resources will also contact the employee’s supervisor and other relevant parties, such as the Vice President, the Medical Director of Health Services, Campus Planning and Facilities and the Senior Benefits Administrator for leave tracking.

  • COVID-19 Reporting Process

    COVID-19 Reporting Process

    • Step 1:  Employee will report COVID-19 illness to the Human Resources COVID-19 Response Team at 678-839-6111 or covid-hr@westga.edu.
    • Step 2:  Human Resources will notify the supervisor and their respective Vice President. HR will also notify the Medical Director and Campus Planning and Facilities as needed.  
    • Step 3:  The Medical Director or Human Resources will notify GDPH to initiate contact tracing. 
    • Step 4:  The Vice President will notify the President’s Office to provide USG notification. 
  • Do I need approval to return to work after testing positive for COVID-19?

    Do I need approval to return to work after testing positive for COVID-19?

    Employees will follow a Return to Work Process as follows:

    Return to Work Process Table
    Employee Circumstance Return to Work
    Employee is tested and tests negative Employee may return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.
    Employee is tested and is positive for COVID-1 CDC recommends isolation be maintained for at least 10 days after illness onset and at least three (3) days after recovery. Employee may then return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.
    Employee is not tested but presumed to have COVID CDC recommends isolation be maintained for at least 10 days after illness onset and at least three (3) days after recovery. Employee may then return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

    Return to Work Process Table

    • Employee Circumstance: Employee is tested and tests negative
      Return to Work: Employee may return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

    • Employee Circumstance: Employee is tested and is positive for COVID-1
      Return to Work: CDC recommends isolation be maintained for at least 10 days after illness onset and at least three (3) days after recovery. Employee may then return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

    • Employee Circumstance: Employee is not tested but presumed to have COVID
      Return to Work: CDC recommends isolation be maintained for at least 10 days after illness onset and at least three (3) days after recovery. Employee may then return to work with HR approval. Contact Christina Brogdon or J’Nee Dobson at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

     

  • What if my spouse or dependent are COVID-19 positive?

    What if my spouse or dependent are COVID-19 positive?

    Employee should self-quarantine for 14 days. If no symptoms develop during their quarantine, then they are free to return to work with HR approval. If symptoms occur or are tested positive for COVID-19, the employee will follow the process set forth above to notify HR at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111. The employee will begin isolation protocol per CDC guidelines.

  • Am I required to wear a face covering at work? Are student workers included in this requirement?

    Am I required to wear a face covering at work? Are student workers included in this requirement?

    All employees are strongly encouraged to wear a cloth face covering on campus, but there may be scenarios under which an employee would be required to wear a face covering (e.g. when social distancing is difficult to practice). Please follow CDC guidelines for covering the nose and mouth at work.

  • Will UWG provide face covering and personal protective equipment to employees?

    Will UWG provide face covering and personal protective equipment to employees?

    UWG will provide face coverings and personal protective equipment to service and operational staff whose primary responsibility encompasses stewardship of campus assets, delivery of essential services and/or public safety. Employees in this category include but are not limited to: facilities services (maintenance, custodial, grounds); construction project managers; food services; transportation; ITS field technicians; logistics (shipping, receiving, delivery, post office) and police officers. Your supervisor will inform you if the university will provide face coverings and personal protective equipment as a part of your work uniform or supplies.

    All other employees should provide their own face covering as a part of their work attire.

  • What is the expectation of employees for maintaining a clean workspace?

    What is the expectation of employees for maintaining a clean workspace?

    Employees are expected to clean their workspaces regularly. Be mindful to clean high-touch items and surfaces often. Given the high demand for cleaning supplies, employees should work with their supervisor on proper use and preservation of cleaning supplies.

  • Who is considered high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19?

    Who is considered high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19?

    See "People Who Are at Increased Risk for Severe Illness" on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.

    If you believe you fall into this category and are requesting an accommodation, please contact HR at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

  • What work options are available to employees in a high-risk health category?

    What work options are available to employees in a high-risk health category?

    In addition to accommodations provided in accordance with the ADA, the University of West Georgia (UWG) provides alternative work arrangements for employees in response to public health emergency guidance when it will enable the performance of the employee’s essential functions and when doing so does not create an undue hardship to the institution. Employees who are requesting alternate work arrangements must complete and submit the Alternate Work Arrangements Request Form along with supporting documentation to the Office of Human Resources at covid-hr@westga.edu or 678-839-6111.

    • A confidential interactive discussion with Human Resources is encouraged for employees who are seeking alternative work arrangements or reasonable accommodations.
    • If more information is needed, Human Resources may require that you authorize your healthcare provider to confirm your disability and/or the need for the alternate work arrangements or requested accommodation.
    • It is your responsibility to ensure your healthcare provider statement or other supporting documentation is returned to the Office of Human Resources.  
    • You are not required to disclose to your immediate supervisor the medical basis for a requested accommodation. Medical records are confidential and maintained in the Office of Human Resources only.
  • Can a manager consider telework or flex schedules for employees?

    Can a manager consider telework or flex schedules for employees?

    Employees should consult with their supervisors about teleworking and flexible schedule options. Supervisors can approve telework and flexible schedules in order to accommodate business needs, facilitate social distancing, and foster employee engagement, when permitted. Supervisors should complete a remote work agreement for appropriate documentation of approved remote work in consultation with Human Resources. In addition, a director or department head may develop an approved remote work agreement for their unit in consultation with their AVP/Dean/VP and Human Resources.

  • What can I do to protect myself?

    What can I do to protect myself?

    The most important responsibility employees have is to practice prevention and follow CDC and GDPH best practices for workplace safety. Please take appropriate measures such as:

    • Wash hands regularly and for at least 20 seconds;
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth;
    • Cover coughs and sneezes with tissues;
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick;
    • All employees are strongly encouraged to wear a cloth face covering on campus;
    • Be responsible and courteous to others and stay home if you are sick. If you are experiencing symptoms, contact your health provider and use the self-reporting tool.
    • Respect personal space when greeting others and during conversations; and
    • Be mindful of those in high-risk populations such as those with underlying health conditions and the elderly.
  • What should I do if I am sick?

    What should I do if I am sick?

    Employees should not come to work when they are sick, even if they do not believe their illness is related to COVID-19. Employees should stay home, notify their supervisor, and use appropriate leave. If an employee appears to be exhibiting symptoms associated with COVID-19 while at work, a manager should excuse the employee from work and advise them to seek care from a healthcare provider. All employees, including student workers, are eligible for emergency sick leave per the Families First Coronavirus Act. Here’s a link to request COVID-19 Leave.

    Employees should contact your Benefits Administrator for requests and approvals. The employee will be expected to use appropriate leave to cover the time away and may be expected to provide a release from a healthcare provider to return to work.

  • What if I have been exposed and am showing symptoms?

    What if I have been exposed and am showing symptoms?

    Employees who believe they have been directly exposed to COVID-19 and are showing symptoms should seek care from a healthcare provider and may be required to self-quarantine. During this time, employees should not come to work and should use the self-reporting application to report their health status. Supervisors and managers have the discretion to determine if an employee’s duties and responsibilities can reasonably be performed from an employee’s home location, and, when they can, the manager may elect to offer the employee the option to telework.

  • Will FMLA cover me if I become ill with the COVID-19?

    Will FMLA cover me if I become ill with the COVID-19?

    If you are eligible for FMLA and have tested positive for COVID-19, FMLA will be available to you.

  • Will FMLA cover me if an immediate member of my family contracts COVID-19?

    Will FMLA cover me if an immediate member of my family contracts COVID-19?

    FMLA allows an eligible employee to take FMLA leave if either the employee or an immediate family member, defined as spouse, child or parent, contracts the virus.

  • Is travel approved for employees?

    Is travel approved for employees?

    Non-essential travel is prohibited. All essential travel must be documented and approved. Individuals returning from travel must follow defined return to work protocols for possible exposure to COVID-19.

  • Describe appropriate social distancing requirements.

    Describe appropriate social distancing requirements.

    Employees should maintain at least six (6) feet apart from other individuals. There should be no more than 10 people per 600 square feet. Virtual meetings should replace in-person meetings when possible.

  • When I report to work, will I be able to gain access into my building?

    When I report to work, will I be able to gain access into my building?

    Most buildings will be secured on Monday, June 15. Returning faculty and staff should keep their UWG ID on them at all times while buildings are in a card-access-only state. Unit heads and building managers may contact uwg_access_control-list@westga.edu if they wish to request changes to building schedules. Employees needing access credentials should contact their unit head or supervisor to make arrangements for access.

  • Should employees who care for or live with individuals at higher risk for severe illness with COVID-19 return to campus?

    Should employees who care for or live with individuals at higher risk for severe illness with COVID-19 return to campus?

    Employees who care for or live with individuals at higher risk for severe illness with COVID-19 should plan to return to campus as scheduled and work with their direct supervisor to ensure that their work environment allows for social distancing and the ability to practice the behaviors known to reduce the spread of the COVID-19. Employees may utilize appropriate leave options as necessary. Employees should contact the campus human resource office to identify appropriate leave options.