General Employee Guidance - Columbus State University Skip to Main Content

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COVID-19 Response and Updates

General Employee Guidance

Face Coverings and Masks

Students are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering or mask while inside CSU and other USG facilities, regardless of their vaccination status. However, masks and face coverings are not required in USG facilities or outside on USG campuses. Unvaccinated students are strongly encouraged to continue wearing a mask or face covering. Furthermore, employees may request that their coworkers who visit or meet in their personal office spaces wear face coverings as a courtesy.

Supervisors and coworkers must refrain from discriminating against their colleagues based on their decisions to wear or not wear face coverings in the workplace. Furthermore, supervisors must not segregate their direct reports based on their decision to wear or not wear face coverings in the workplace.

See "Face Coverings and Masks" for additional guidance.

Vaccination Status

All employees are strongly encouraged to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 vaccine; however, CSU and other USG institutions do not require employees to be fully vaccinated. No employee should be asked about their vaccination status, segregated or otherwise treated differently in their work environments based on their vaccination status. See "Vaccines and Vaccination Status" for additional guidance.

COVID Vaccine Leave (Non-Closure Emergency Leave)

Employees may only use COVID-19 Vaccine Leave in order to receive the vaccine and if they experience side effects from receiving the vaccine. COVID-19 Vaccine Leave is not permanent leave and may conclude as early as Aug. 29, 2021, at the end of the State of Emergency for Continued COVID-19 Economic Recovery declared in the Governor's Executive Order No. USG encourages employees who have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine to do so and to use this leave while it is available.

  • An employee may take up to eight hours of Non-Closure Emergency Leave for the purpose of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.
  • In addition, employees may also take up to 16 hours of Non-Closure Emergency Leave if they receive a COVID-19 vaccine and experience severe negative side effects that prohibit the performance of their duties of employment.

Contact the Office of Human Resources for more information on how to obtain this leave.

Work Attendance

If employees are symptomatic in the workplace, supervisors have the right to ask them to go home and self-report their symptoms to the COVID-19 Response Team (regardless of their vaccination status). Employees communicating directly with supervisors about a potential positive diagnosis or exposure should be referred to the COVID-19 online self-report form or a member of the COVID-19 Response Team so that contact tracers can follow up to confirm information. Supervisors may also notify the COVID-19 Response Team on an employee's behalf if an employee is symptomatic or has knowingly been exposed.

When employees submit a COVID-19 self-report, they should quarantine themselves in their residence, monitor their email and telephone, and respond to COVID-19 Response Team inquiries in a timely manner. Supervisors will receive an official excused absence notification from the COVID-19 Response Team; however, to maintain employees' privacy, the reason(s) will not be disclosed. Employees may contact their supervisors to inform them of their health status and upcoming absences, and to explore alternate options for in-person work (if those options exist).

Alternate Work Arrangements and Work Absences

Alternate Work Arrangements (AWAs) or accommodations previously granted to employees due to increased risk for severe illness with COVID-19 ended on June 30, 2021. All employees are now expected to have returned to their traditional work arrangements.

Lack of vaccination is not grounds for a request for an accommodation. Furthermore, COVID-19-specific leave for isolation and quarantine is no longer available. Pursuant to USG policy, supervisors or their designees have the authority to establish teleworking arrangements. Supervisors should be prepared to accommodate employees who are required to go into quarantine or isolation (if those opportunities to work remotely exist). Employees who must isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19 illness or exposure may telework during this time with the approval of their supervisor. The nature of their job duties influences whether an employee can telework, since some positions are not able to be performed remotely.

Under no circumstance should telework be considered an employee's right or entitlement. All telework requests and designations are based upon managerial discretion and in accordance with the determination of what best serves the institution and students. Employees should work with their immediate supervisors to explore these options if they apply.

Requests for ADA accommodations or flexible work arrangements will be reviewed in accordance with the pre-pandemic ADA accommodations or USG Telework/Flextime policies. When telework is not possible, employees who must isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19 must use their accumulated leave to be away from work.

Fully vaccinated individuals who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 will not be required to quarantine if they show no symptoms, based on their verified vaccination status.

See "Guidance for Faculty" for additional details regarding how those absences might affect course administration.

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