In response to COVID-19, procedures are laid out for UH Hilo staff to work from home

UH employees are encouraged to review two new documents (being implemented while under review by the union) and talk to their supervisor and administrators about working from home.

By Susan Enright

David Lassner
David Lassner

University of Hawai‘i President David Lassner announced yesterday that to improve social distancing needed to curb spread of COVID-19, campus leaders are identifying functions that do not require staff and other employees to be on campus. Initial procedures are being put in place for these employees to work from home, beginning with a request/agreement form. The same form will be used to address employees with personal vulnerabilities or risks.

“We will continue to provide updates and information as the situation evolves and guidance changes at the State and Federal levels,” says Lassner in his announcement. “Please remember to take care of yourselves (social distancing and handwashing especially) and continue your compassion and aloha to all around you in these challenging times.”

The initial procedures for UH staff to work from home to improve social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic are the implementation of two documents: 1) Voluntary Work from Home Request and Agreement, and 2) Guidelines to Assist Supervisors to Evaluate a Request to Voluntarily Work from Home. These documents are still officially in draft form as of the announcement but employees can move forward using them for requests anyway.

The Hawaii Government Employees Association, in an email to UH members, notes, “Given the seriousness of this unprecedented coronavirus health crisis and the need to take immediate steps to address this constantly evolving situation, these documents are being implemented by the University with the understanding that they remain subject to union consultation.”

Employees are encouraged to review the documents and talk to their supervisor and administrators about working from home. There are options also such as staggering work days so that there is never more than 10 employees in an office while making sure all duties are covered.

Comments and/or questions can be emailed to UHTeleworkFormsConsult[at]hgea.org. This procedure will need to go through union consultation so comments are encouraged.

Other resources

UH System COVID-19 Updates

CDC.gov

 

Story by Susan Enright, a public information specialist for the Office of the Chancellor and editor of UH Hilo Stories. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.