Additional Coronavirus Questions

(These questions came to me from Andrea Gurcsik, Sr. HR practitioner - Steve)

Here at First Solar we are starting to put together phase 2 of our Coronavirus plan, specifically focused on our hourly associates, mostly manufacturing associates.  I’m reaching out today to see if you have anything in place for your hourly workers in regards to expectations, pay, etc  should they be diagnosed with the corona virus?  If so, would you be willing to share? 

Here are some items we are reviewing/discussing:

  • Extended work from home policies for office associates
  • Medical documentation requirements if an when there is a suspected case
  • Determine if we will have paid or unpaid policies for Mfg./hourly associates when there is a suspected case.  Confirm there will be no use of personal vacation and/or emergency time off for any cases
  • Continued evaluation with our STD provider as to how these cases will be handled.  No changes at this time

If you’d be interested to see what our communications to date, just let me know and I’d be happy to share.

Thanks - Andrea

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  • We're a a 16 employee nonprofit in Cincinnati with existing PTO (for sick, vacation, personal time absences) and are considering amending to NOT reduce an employee's accrued PTO if they are either quarantined or out sick for the corona virus in order to encourage exposed or sick employees to not come in.  As part of this proposed change we would require employees to self quarantine for 14 days if they have been exposed or recently been in a CDC designated country or affected area.  Also, if they have a fever and cough then they are required to stay home.  In both these cases: when at home, they should work from home if able and if not, no PTO will be deducted.   

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  • Hi Andrea, 

    Below are the steps we have taken for our business (Ohio, 550+ employees):

    • Office employees are working from home as much as possible during this time; 75% of our workforce is working from home on any given day.  We anticipate we will be maintaining this schedule at least through May 1st, potentially longer.
    • We have altered production shifts to allow for social distancing, fewer people in the plant at any given time, and still meet production needs.  We are currently on (3) 12 hour shifts, 1st and 2nd shift, M, T, W and TH, F, S.  Sunday the plant is deep cleaned/sanitized as much as possible.  
    • We have enacted a 14 day quarantine, which is paid, for those that have a suspected exposure or are exhibiting symptoms.  If we were to have a confirmed diagnosis, then we would utilize STD and follow the doctor's recommendation for allowed time off.  We are not requiring individuals to use vacation or personal days if they are on quarantine.  
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