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Covid-19 Preparedness Plan

COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

City of Vergas

COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

The City of Vergas is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for our staff and employees. To ensure that, we have developed the following COVID-19 Preparedness Plan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Managers and staff are all responsible for implementing this plan. Our goal is to mitigate the potential for transmission of COVID-19 in our workplaces and communities, which requires full cooperation among our workers, management, and membership. Only through this cooperative effort can we establish and maintain the safety and health of our workplaces.

Management and staff are responsible for implementing and complying with all aspects of this COVID-19 Preparedness Plan. City of Vergas managers and supervisors are empowered to enforce the provisions of this policy.

Our employees are our most important assets. We are serious about safety, health and keeping our staff working at the City of Vergas. Employee involvement is essential in developing and implementing a successful COVID-19 Preparedness Plan. We have involved our employees in this process by inviting review of the plan and suggestions by the City of Vergas Safety Committee (Dean Haarstick, Mike DuFrane and Julie Lammers) and members of the staff (Ronola Richards). Our COVID-19 Preparedness Plan follows Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) guidelines, Federal OSHA standards related to COVID-19 and Executive Order 20-48, and addresses:

  • hygiene and respiratory etiquette;
  • engineering and administrative controls for social distancing;
  • customer controls and protections for drop-off, pick-up and delivery;
  • housekeeping, including cleaning, disinfecting and decontamination;
  • prompt identification and isolation of sick persons;
  • special considerations for off-site personnel;
  • communications and training that will be provided to managers and workers; and
  • management and supervision necessary to ensure effective implementation of the plan.

Screening and policies for employees exhibiting signs and symptoms of COVID-19

All employees will be informed of common signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and are encouraged to self-monitor for those symptoms. The following policies and procedures are established to assess employee’s health status prior to entering the workplace, and to establish a reporting protocol for when they are sick or experiencing symptoms.

Temperature Screening. Prior to arriving at the office, employees will be encouraged to self-administer a temperature check using a thermometer. If the temperature check shows that the employee has a fever (temperature higher than 100.4 degrees F), the employee will notify the Clerk-Treasurer that they are running a fever and will not be at work.  If employees request temperature to be taken they may have temperature taken in the City office.

Communicating the Need to Stay Home. If employees are sick or experiencing symptoms while they are at home, they should call, email, or text the Clerk-Treasurer.  Employees should not come to work if they or a family member is feeling sick or if they have been exposed to COVID-19.  If employees are sick or experiencing symptoms while at work, they should inform the Clerk-Treasurer-Liquor Store Manager and leave for home as soon as possible.

Leave Policy.  City of Vergas has implemented leave policies that promote workers staying at home when they are sick, when household members are sick, or when required by a health care provider to isolate or quarantine themselves or a member of their household. City of Vergas has implemented a temporary modification to its personnel policy for the duration of the pandemic emergency which provides that, if an employee does not have sufficient leave to meet this need, additional sick leave will be extended at no cost to the employee. Accommodations for workers with underlying medical conditions or who have household members with underlying health conditions will be implemented. Individuals with underlying health conditions will be permitted to telework or maintain strict isolation within the office to the extent possible. 

City of Vergas has also implemented a policy for informing workers if there is a reported occurrence of covid-19 among general population of local residence or business.  Workers will be informed by the Clerk-Treasurer.  

In addition, a policy has been implemented to protect the privacy of workers’ health status and health information. City of Vergas personnel records are maintained and stored in a secure area that is accessible only through a lock when it is unoccupied.  

COVID-19 in a Member Community.  If there is a positive Covid-19 reported in the community, city employees will refrain from visiting residences and/or businesses until it is determined safe to do so.

Handwashing

Basic infection prevention measures have been implemented in our workplaces and shall be utilized at all times. Employees shall be instructed to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water frequently throughout the day, but especially at the beginning and end of their shift, prior to any mealtimes and after using the restroom. All visitors to the facility will be required to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer of greater than 60% alcohol prior to or immediately upon entering the city-owned facility. City of Vergas will have both hand soap and hand sanitizer available. 

Employees will be asked to wash their hands at the sink or use sanitizer when they enter the office and after handling packages or materials brought in from outside the office. 

Respiratory etiquette:  Cover your cough or sneeze

Employees and visitors are being instructed to cover their mouth and nose with their sleeve or a tissue when coughing or sneezing and to avoid touching their face, in particular their mouth, nose and eyes, with their hands. They should dispose of tissues in the trash and wash or sanitize their hands immediately afterward. Respiratory etiquette will be demonstrated on posters and supported by making tissues and trash receptacles available to all workers and visitors.

Employees will be reminded of the need to practice respiratory etiquette during all employee meetings.

Social distancing and Personal Protection

Social distancing and personal protection have been implemented in the workplace through the following engineering and administrative controls:

Work from Home.  Workers who can work from home are encouraged to continue to do so.

Flexible Work Hours.  Workers are encouraged to vary their work hours and workdays to reduce the number of people in the workplace at any time.    

Social Distancing.  Employees having a private office with a door are being asked to close the office door when appropriate so other employees will be isolated from others when at their workstation.  Workers will be instructed to maintain six feet of distance between them and any other persons at all times. 

Vehicles.  Employees will not be allowed to carpool or ride together in vehicles. 

Residential Property. Employees entering residential property must wear mask when interacting with residents. 

Protective Supplies.  City of Vergas will provide each employee with a mask to be worn whenever the employee is in the common areas of the office or interacting with another person.  Masks are to be worn anytime an employee is within 6 feet of other individuals (includes employees being indoors or outdoors) without a barrier between them. Disposable latex-free gloves will be available for handling packages and other similar tasks. Gloves should be disposed of properly after use and hands washed after removing gloves.

Visitors.  Visitors and other members of the general population visiting the City of Vergas offices will be encouraged to wear a mask.  If masks are available, the visitor will be provided with a mask if they do not have one.

Deliveries.  Delivery workers will be instructed to leave mail and packages at the reception desk or they can be delivered to the back door of the liquor store and doorbell used to inform clerk of delivery.  Materials received will be distributed by employees from there.  If an employee needs to interact with delivery personnel, they shall wear their masks and maintain social distancing. 

Gathering.  Employees, visitors, and customers are prohibited from gathering in groups. Employees and visitors are prohibited from gathering in confined areas, including elevators, and from using other workers’ personal protective equipment, phones, computer equipment, desks, cubicles, workstations, offices or other personal work tools and equipment. Employees and visitors shall maintain six feet of distance between each other while conducting business.

Housekeeping

Regular housekeeping practices have been implemented, including routine cleaning and disinfecting of work surfaces, equipment, tools and machinery, and areas in the work environment, including restrooms, break rooms, meeting rooms, and drop-off and pick-up locations. Frequent cleaning and disinfecting will be conducted in high-touch areas, such as phones, keyboards, touch screens, controls, door handles, copy machines, tills, delivery equipment, etc. The Event Center’s cleaning service will provide limited cleaning and disinfecting of tables, countertops and other surfaces after hours, but it will be virtually impossible to know whether a surface is virus-free prior to using it. Employees should clean a work area in the common areas of the Event Center prior to using it and when they are done using it. Overall cleaning at a minimum should be done prior to start of work and at the end of each day.  

Preparedness Plan communication and training

This Preparedness Plan will be provided electronically or in paper form to all employees on June 25, 2020 and necessary training will be provided. Additional communication and training will be ongoing as conditions change and provided to all employees who did not receive the initial training. Instructions will be communicated to delivery personnel about how drop-off, pick-up and delivery services will be conducted to ensure social distancing practices are followed and about the recommendation that delivery workers use face masks when dropping off, picking up or accepting delivery. Managers and supervisors are to monitor how effective the program has been implemented by sharing their observations and discussing potential modifications during weekly staff meetings. Management and workers are to work through this new program together and update the employee training as necessary. This COVID-19 Preparedness Plan has been certified by the City of Vergas Safety Committee and approved by the City of Vergas City Council and will be posted throughout the workplace on June 25, 2020. The COVID-19 Preparedness Plan be updated as necessary.

Certified by:    ____Julie Lammers_________________________ {print Name}