Boundless Employee Portal

COVID-19 HR Update

COVID-19 HR Update

The health and safety of the people we serve and the people who provide services are of utmost importance to us. Thanks to everyone’s hard work, Boundless has been very fortunate — so far — to have very minimal incidents of COVID-19. As the state of Ohio slowly opens back up and adjusts to the new normal, we’re taking additional steps to maintain good health throughout the organization. Continue Reading COVID-19 HR Update

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General COVID-19 Response Information 

Q: Should I continue to work during the pandemic?

A: Yes, unless you are sick. Some staff can and are working remotely, while others provide critical functions to the individuals we serve and need to continue to work from a specific location.

Q: What symptoms should I be looking for?  

A: The Coronavirus symptoms to monitor are:

  • a temperature of 100.4 or higher
  • cough, shortness of breath, or other lower respiratory symptoms, such as chest tightness or wheezing upon exhaling, that is new and not part of a chronic health condition, such as COPD or emphysema
Q: What if I get coronavirus?

A: The policy on sick time hasn’t substantially changed due to the Coronavirus epidemic. If you are sick, you should follow established procedures for using PTO. You should also follow your physician’s orders and/or the CDC’s guidelines for care.

We are temporarily waiving the timing requirements to request PTO because of the current situation. We ask that you notify your supervisor immediately if you need to take time off.

Q: What if a member of my household has coronavirus?

A: If you have been exposed to someone diagnosed with the Coronavirus or a member of your family or household has any symptoms of Coronavirus, you can return to work if no symptoms exist after fourteen days or a negative test result is received.

Q: What if a member of my household has coronavirus or I am exposed to someone at work or in the community who has coronavirus?

To ensure continuity of operations of essential functions, Boundless follows the CDC guidance, which advises that our essential staff may be permitted to continue work following potential exposure to COVID-19, provided they remain asymptomatic and additional precautions are implemented to protect them and the community.

A potential exposure means being a household contact or having close contact within six feet of an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. The timeframe for having contact with an individual includes the forty-eight hours before the individual became symptomatic.

Essential Boundless staff who have had been exposed but remain asymptomatic should adhere to the following practices prior to and during their work shift.

  • Pre-Screen: Employers should measure the employee’s temperature and assess symptoms prior to them starting work. Ideally, temperature checks should happen before the individual enters the facility.
  • Regular Monitoring: As long as the employee doesn’t have a temperature or symptoms, they can work but need to self-monitor throughout their shift and inform their manager immediately should their condition change during their shift.
  • Wear a Mask: The employee should wear a face mask at all times while in the workplace for fourteen days after last exposure. Employers can issue facemasks or can approve employees’ supplied cloth face coverings in the event of shortages.
  • Social Distance: The employee should maintain six feet and practice social distancing as work duties permit.
  • Disinfect and Clean workspaces: Clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment routinely.
Q: When can I return to work if I had coronavirus?

A: People with COVID-19 who have stayed home (home isolated) can stop home isolation under the following conditions:

If you have not been tested to determine if you are still contagious, you can leave home after these three things have ALL happened:

  • You have had no fever for at least seventy-two hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers).  
  • Your other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath has improved).  
  • At least seven days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.  

If you have been tested to determine if you are still contagious, you can leave home after these three things have ALL happened:  

  • You no longer have a fever (without the use of medicine that reduces fevers).  
  • Your other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath has improved).  
  • You received two negative tests in a row, twenty-four hours apart.
Q: What about Family Medical Leave?  

A: If you are away from work for three days or more because you are experiencing symptoms, or your spouse/child/parent is experiencing symptoms, you may apply for leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). If your doctor certifies the leave as a serious health condition under FMLA, your absence will be protected under FMLA. Given how busy health care provider offices and medical facilities are, you will have thirty days to provide this documentation rather than the fifteen days typically required by law.

Q: What if I have an underlying medical issue?  

A: If you have any underlying medical issues and your doctor requires you to remain home, please provide us with documentation. If reviewed and approved, you may be able to work from home. If you cannot work remotely, you can utilize accrued PTO to continue to be paid. If you do not have PTO to cover your absence, you may be granted unpaid leave.

Q: What if I have no PTO?

A: If you test positive for the Coronavirus or need to stay home due to a Coronavirus related reason and have no PTO, you may be eligible for unpaid leave. Please talk to your supervisor or Human Resources as soon as possible. If you are granted unpaid leave under any of the above circumstances or FMLA, your benefits will be continued for twelve weeks, and you will not be subject to any corrective action.

Q. What if I can’t come to work because of childcare issues?

A. Inform your direct supervisor that you need to stay home to care for your child(ren). You can be paid from PTO and may be approved for unpaid leave upon the exhaustion of PTO. This is the normal process even in these heightened circumstances. Your direct supervisor and HR will work with you regarding any request for unpaid leave.

Q. What if I don’t feel comfortable coming to work?

A. You will need to request leave. Any such request is subject to approval by your manager. If approved, you will be paid from PTO and may be approved for unpaid leave upon exhaustion of PTO. Your direct supervisor and HR will work with you regarding any request for unpaid leave.

Q. Will approved unpaid leave impact unemployment?

A. No – if you are placed on an approved unpaid leave, you may apply for unemployment compensation with the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services. Do understand that the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services makes final determinations about unemployment benefits. We cannot guarantee approval but would not oppose anyone’s request if on an approved unpaid leave.

Q. Will approved unpaid leave impact benefits?

A. No – if you are granted an approved unpaid leave, we can maintain your benefits with Boundless for twelve weeks.

Q. Will approved unpaid leave cause me to be disciplined?

A. No – if your leave (paid or unpaid) is approved, you will not be subject to any corrective action.

Q. What if I don’t want to use my PTO? Can I save it for use later this year?

A. If you request leave, you must use PTO as is the usual procedure. If you have no PTO or exhaust your PTO, you may be approved for unpaid leave. You will work with your direct supervisor and HR regarding a request for unpaid leave.

Q. What if I have an existing health issue that looks like coronavirus?

A. If you have a previously documented health issue with similar symptoms to COVID-19 and you have been cleared to work by a physician, you should provide us with that documentation from your doctor and continue reporting to work.

Q. What does the stay-at-home order mean for me?

A. You are an essential employee of Boundless, and Boundless operates in an essential industry providing critical services. Because of this, the stay-at-home order doesn’t apply to your employment. For that reason, we prepared a letter for you to use in case anyone in authority questions why you are out. Please either carry a physical copy with you OR be prepared to show an electronic copy on your phone or tablet at all times.

As we continue to provide services and have staff report to work, Boundless is responsible for trying to create a work environment that avoids close contact between people for more than a few moments at a time. Even at work, you should do your best to practice social distancing, use universal precautions whenever possible, and always maintain a clean and sanitized work environment.

Q. How does the Families First Coronavirus Response Act apply to me?

A. The Family First Coronavirus Response Act does not apply to Boundless. It was designed for organizations much smaller than Boundless and only applies to organizations with an employee count of 500 or less. The act helps smaller agencies, as many of those agencies are not able to provide benefits like PTO. Fortunately, Boundless has been able to provide benefits and PTO for our team members for many years.

Q. What if a member of my household has symptoms of coronavirus but has not been tested, or has symptoms and is waiting on test results?

A: If a member of your household has coronavirus symptoms but has not been tested, or has been tested but has not received test results, follow ODH recommendations for universal precautions and social distancing within your home. Notify your supervisor immediately if you need to take time off. You can continue working if you are not experiencing symptoms. Should you develop symptoms, you may return to work when you are fever/symptom free for 72 hours or have received negative test results.

Q: My current daycare became licensed to care for children of essential workers. How do I provide the paperwork they need to have uninterrupted daycare?

A: Based on our research, you’ll need four (4) things:

  1. Complete the Pandemic Child Care Center Enrollment Addendum form. A link to a fillable PDF is available HERE.
  2. Complete the Child Enrollment and Health Information form. A link to a fillable PDF is available HERE. 
  3. A letter from Boundless stating that your job qualifies as providing essential services. A printable/downloadable copy of that letter is available HERE.
  4. Pay stubs from ADP to prove proof of current employment. To help, HR has provided two instructional documents for how to access pay stubs through ADP. Go HERE and HERE.

Links to these documents are available at www.IAmBoundless.org/BoundlessTeam.

Q: My current daycare may be closing. How can I find new daycare?

A: The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services has a list of available daycares throughout the state that have obtained licenses to care for children of essential staff members. You can find the list HERE. We will update this list frequently as we identify additional providers. Please reach out to the daycare nearest you quickly.

Q. What if I still cannot find childcare?

A. If those options do not satisfy your needs, inform your direct supervisor that you need to stay home to care for your child(ren). Your supervisor will work with you first to determine if an alternative schedule may be available. If an alternative doesn’t exist, you will need to request leave. If approved, you can be paid from PTO and may be approved for unpaid leave upon the exhaustion of PTO. This is the normal process even in these heightened circumstances. Your direct supervisor and HR will work with you regarding any request for unpaid leave.

Center-Based Teams

Q. Why am I being required to come to work without people to support? Will there be other services to perform?

A. Even without people to support in the center-based programs, there is a great deal of work to do. From training and sanitizing to preparing for the kids to return, there are essential duties that require attention.

We are also reviewing options for in-home or telehealth services for the people we support. Program leadership and managers will update you on this as more information becomes available. During this time of crisis, Boundless is seeking new and creative opportunities to provide the critical supports we know our kids need. Please seek out your supervisor to discuss further.

We are asking our day, vocational, and employment program staff to remain at work in similar capacities.

Q. What if there are no services to perform? What if my program is completely shut down?

A. If your program is completely shut down, you can remain paid from PTO and will be placed on an approved unpaid leave of absence once PTO is exhausted. This will allow you to maintain your benefits with Boundless for twelve weeks and to apply for unemployment compensation with the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services. When services pick back up in the future, we will let you know and bring you back to work immediately!

Frontline Staff

Q. What is Boundless doing to ensure PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) is available?

A. As you know by watching the daily news, the U.S. has a shortage of PPE, and these shortages will prevent us from distributing PPE immediately. This shortage could create gaps in the near-term future. We understand this is imperfect and share your frustration. Boundless is working tirelessly to provide what is necessary for our staff to work safely. We are now importing directly from international agencies and are having PPE sent directly from the manufacturers. We are also actively developing a system for managing inventory and ongoing ordering. Upon receipt of PPE, we will schedule distribution for those in need. This is a time-consuming process. We cannot promise when the items will be delivered but are doing everything possible and believe the steps we’re taking will yield results faster than many.

Protective Personal Equipment and Masks

Q. What is PPE?
A. PPE stands for Personal Protective Equipment. PPE could be anything designed to protect the wearer from injury or infection in the work setting.
Q. Is Boundless supplying PPE to all staff?
A. PPE is only to be used when it is necessary as an infection control method to protect workers from exposure. Boundless will provide PPE when contact or aerosol isolation is ordered on an individual served.
Q. What has Boundless done to secure PPE?
A. Several Boundless team members started sourcing PPE and cleaning supplies in the early days of the pandemic. We’ve scoured all types of suppliers and added our names to lists for donated products as well as products for purchase. Everyone pitched in to find reputable suppliers who could deliver quality products. At this same time we were purchasing PPE, we also started asking for donations. We reached out to the greater community for assistance with donated homemade cloth masks. One Facebook post asking for masks was shared over 100 times and reached 9,000 people worldwide. We’re also applying for grants to cover the unexpected cost of what we’ve purchased, now measuring tens of thousands of dollars.
Q. What have we ordered?
A. We’ve ordered cleaning supplies, medical-grade masks, hand sanitizer, gloves, thermometers, gowns, surgical goggles, sanitation supplies, spit shields, no-touch trash cans, and cloth masks.
Q. What PPE has been distributed?
A. All essential staff should have access to cleaning supplies and should be using those supplies – along with frequent hand-washing – to protect against the virus entering a home. We have already distributed several hundred homemade cloth masks to essential staff. Thanks to our team of volunteers, additional masks arrive every week and will be distributed upon arrival. Thermometers and surgical goggles have just arrived and will be distributed.
Q. Do I have to wear a cloth mask all the time?
A. Gov. DeWine has requested that cloth masks be worn outside your home, and we recommend that you do so if you’ve been given a mask. Family members and guardians of those we serve can ask that staff wear cloth masks while providing services. In those cases, staff should wear their cloth masks while performing regular duties.
Q. How is PPE distributed?
A. The Boundless department directors and regional directors have developed priority lists for how to distribute PPE upon arrival. This list is based on the assumption that no one we serve has tested positive for COVID-19.
Q. If someone Boundless serves tests positive for COVID-19, what additional PPE will be provided?
A. If someone Boundless serves tests positive for COVID-19, PPE will be provided to the essential staff providing services. At that time, staff will receive additional training on how to properly wear, use, and discard the equipment to ensure maximum safety. Boundless has already received medical-grade PPE and is packaging it into safety packs to distribute to staff if/when needed.
Q. How do I get PPE if I don’t have any at the location where I work?

A. Please submit a work order through Upkeep. All supply orders must contain specific location information, not just department information, for proper accounting.

 

What’s the Boundless policy about staff and masks?

In keeping with a mandate from Ohio’s Governor and the Ohio Department of Health, all Boundless team members are required to wear masks or other face coverings while at work. 

What’s the Boundless policy about staff and masks?

In keeping with a mandate from Ohio’s Governor and the Ohio Department of Health, all Boundless team members are required to wear masks or other face coverings while at work. 

Are there exceptions to the policy?

Staff who are alone in a private office with the door closed do not have to wear a mask while in that office with the door closed.

Staff who are working from home do not have to wear masks while inside their own homes.

Otherwise, all staff must wear masks or other face coverings while at work.

What if I’m outside?

The policy is still in effect, whether you’re enjoying an outdoor visit with a person served or you’re taking a walk on your lunch break with a coworker.  Mask wearing is still required.

What if I’m in a home but the person I’m serving is asleep in the other room?

For the health and safety of the people we serve and fellow coworkers, you are still required to wear a mask.

I get severe claustrophobia wearing a mask. Do I still have to wear a mask?

You do need to wear a face-covering but if mask-wearing is problematic, there are options.  Please contact HR Director Matt Hobbs and alternative face coverings will be provided. 

Will I get in trouble if I’m not wearing a mask?

Mask wearing is required and therefore if you don’t wear a mask (or other face covering), you will be subject to disciplinary action.

Will Boundless supply my masks?

All Boundless employees have been given two blue masks with the Boundless letter “B” on them. These masks are yours to keep and can be used both at work and at home.  It is recommended that you wash these masks prior to use.  If you have not yet received your masks, please contact your supervisor immediately. 

My aunt made me a really fun mask. Can I wear it instead of the Boundless ones I got?

Of course.

How will new hires get masks?

New staff will be provided masks upon hire by the HR team.

How often should I wash/dry my masks?

Think of the masks the way you think of wearing a pair of socks.  You should wash after every use. 

How many weeks/months will I have to wear a mask when I’m at work?

All staff will be required to wear masks or other face coverings while at work until it is safe to stop.  Boundless pays close attention to the World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control, and the Ohio Department of Health.  When it’s safe to come to work without a mask or other face covering, we’ll let everyone know right away.

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