Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This message has been approved by Tanya Rowell, CEO of the Public Service Commission
The following has been prepared to address civil service employee concerns regarding COVID-19.

Please convey this message to any employees at your worksite who do not have computer access.
The Chief Public Health Office is providing regular updates regarding the COVID-19 virus and to ensure you are well-informed, please find all available information on the following resource page:

How can I protect myself?
As always, we encourage you to take the following precautions to avoid the spread of germs during cold and flu season:

·     wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
·     use soap immediately before handling any food or beverages;
·     use hand sanitizer if you can't wash;
·     avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth, especially with unwashed hands;
·     politely refrain from shaking hands to reduce the risk of spreading infection;
·     wipe down your workstations, computers, doorknobs, debit machines, desk and
     mobile phones, etc;
·     avoid close contact with people who are sick;
·     cough and sneeze into your sleeve and not your hands;
·     stay home if you are sick to avoid spreading illness to others; and
·     consult with your healthcare provider as needed.

If I am quarantined, or it becomes necessary to self-isolate due to symptoms of COVID-19, will I be able to take this time as sick leave?
You will be eligible for sick leave benefits in accordance with your collective agreement. During this time, employees will not be requested to provide medical certificates for leave related to COVID-19.
If you do not have enough earned sick time, you may request to be advanced sick leave credits, up to a maximum of 15 days, as per Article 23.04 of the UPSE Civil Collective Agreement.

Can I request to work from home if I believe I’ve been exposed to COVID-19, or I feel unsafe because the workplace may have been exposed to COVID-19?
If you’re concerned you have symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever, cough or difficulty breathing, you should contact your healthcare provider immediately for further instructions. 
If you are not ill but have received medical advice to self-isolate, contact your Manager to discuss whether options such as working from home are operationally feasible for your particular position. If this is not an option, you can request sick leave.
If you have any safety concerns about your workplace, please discuss these with your Manager.

What if I have business travel planned (i.e. event, conference) but am no longer comfortable traveling?
Employees may have varying degrees of comfort with travel, given concerns about COVID-19. You are encouraged to use your discretion based on your comfort level and personal situation and discuss upcoming business travel plans and any concerns with your Manager.

If you have further questions or concerns, please contact your Manager or your departmental Human Resource Manager to discuss.