Oakland University

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(248) 370-2100

An aerial view of Wilson Hall on Oakland University's campus, surrounded by green trees.

Employment Information

University Employment
Faculty and Staff
COVID-19 Work Guidelines

For information regarding employment services related to the COVID-19 pandemic, view the Families First Coronavirus Response Act information sheet.

Do the 80 hours of emergency paid sick leave apply to temporary and casual employees?

Yes. Part time employees, however, are only eligible for the number of hours of emergency paid sick leave that they work on average over a two-week period.

Can I use a few hours a day if the 80 hours of COVID-19 leave if needed on an intermittent basis? ? How would I go about that?

Yes, if you are planning to use COVID 80 hours of Emergency Paid Sick Leave on a periodic intermittent basis due school closure, day care closure or not having a suitable person to care for your child, you need to submit supporting documentation to your supervisor (please see the documentation necessary for that reason, noted below) and report those hours on payroll.

If I am asked for documentation for my time off under the COVID 80 hours of Emergency Paid Sick Leave what do I need?

An employee must provide his or her employer documentation in support of paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave. Such documentation must include a signed statement containing the following information:

  1. The employee’s name
  2. The date(s) for which leave is requested
  3. The COVID–19 qualifying reason for leave
  4. A statement representing that the employee is unable to work or telework because of the COVID–19 qualifying reason.

An employee must provide additional documentation depending on the COVID–19 qualifying reason for leave. An employee requesting paid sick leave related to quarantine/isolation must provide the name of the government entity that issued the quarantine or isolation order to which the employee is subject. An employee requesting paid sick leave related to self-quarantine must provide the name of the health care provider who advised him or her to self-quarantine for COVID–19 related reasons.

An employee requesting paid sick leave to care for a qualifying individual must provide either

  1. The government entity that issued the quarantine or isolation order to which the individual is subject or
  2. The name of the health care provider who advised the individual to self-quarantine, depending on the precise reason for the request.

An employee requesting to take paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave to care for his or her child must provide the following information:

  1. The name of the child being cared for
  2. The name of the school, place of care, or child care provider that closed or became unavailable due to COVID–19 reasons; and
  3. A statement representing that no other suitable person is available to care for the child during the period of requested leave.

Can supervisors ask employees the reason for their absences?

Yes, supervisors may ask employees the reason for their absence. A supervisor may ask an employee if they are experiencing fever and respiratory symptoms, but the supervisor must maintain all information about employee illnesses as a confidential medical record.

What should department heads do if they become aware someone on campus is diagnosed with COVID-19?

Send the employee home and notify the Graham Health Center immediately at (248) 370-2341. Any confirmed cases will be followed up through the Oakland County Health Division.

What do I do if I suspect that I have been contaminated with COVID 19?

Graham Health Center’s website has all the information you need for this situation. Check the website for up-to-date information.

Who do I notify if I have been diagnosed with COVID19?

If someone tests positive, the Oakland County Health Department will interview the patient and notify the contacts as indicated. Also, contact the OU Graham Health Center at 248-370-2341.

Leaves from Work

The following information addresses COVID-19 leaves, which will have no impact on time-off accruals. Employees with questions or concerns regarding this information should contact University Human Resources at uhr@oakland.edu.

Monthly Employees (APs, Clerical, AA, Deans, Executives, SOM Faculty)

  • The COVID-19 category will not apply to current FMLA leaves or sick time accruals.
  • Employees with non-COVID-19 related illnesses will continue to follow current sick leave/FMLA policies (e.g. maternity leaves, surgery).
  • Any questions/concerns regarding COVID-19 related illnesses should be directed to Graham Health Center.
  • A doctor's note is not required for COVID-19 related activities.

Bi-Weekly Employees

  • It will be the responsibility of supervisors to track COVID-19 vs. sick time reporting. Supervisors should record COVID-19 related absences under the COVID-19 category.
  • The COVID-19 category will not apply to current FMLA leaves or sick time accruals.
  • Any questions or concerns regarding COVID-19 related illnesses should be directed to Graham Health Center
  • A doctor's note is not required for COVID-19 related activities.

Full/Part-Time Faculty

Faculty will be compensated as normal through this semester. Faculty should contact their department chair and follow established sick time processes as necessary.

Leaves Reporting

How should an employee report leave time on the monthly leave report for COVID-19 situations?

Monthly Employees should use the COVID-19 leave code on their Leave Report or Time Sheet in SAIL and in the comments field enter one of the five reasons below to record time not worked due to the Coronavirus.

Supervisors of Full-Time Bi-weekly Employees should use the COVID-19 (SI9) code in UltraTime and in the message field enter one of the following 5 reasons for time not worked due to the Coronavirus.

Five Reasons for Time Not Worked

  1. Child care – Use for time away from work due to child care issues as a result of K-12 or daycare closure
  2. Elder care – Use for time away from work to care for parents or other older adult dependents with high risk factors for COVID-19
  3. COVID-19 Absence – Use for time away from work due to COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure
    • COVID-19 diagnosis from a physician for you or a member of your household
    • COVID-19 symptoms for you or a member of your household
    • If you or a member of your household had exposure to someone with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis
  4. COVID-19 High Risk – Use for time away from work due to increased COVID-19 risk factors for yourself or a member of your household
  5. Other – Use for time away from work for reasons other than those listed above. Please provide additional details in the comment.
Benefits and Services
  • Blue Cross is providing updated information to its health care plan members regarding a wide array of COVID-19 related information and services online.
  • Priority Health is offering its health care plan members a wide array of COVID-19 related information and services online.
  • Benefits-eligible OU employees, their spouses or domestic partners, their dependent children and their parents or parents-in-law can take advantage of the Unum Employee Assistance Program, which provides access to licensed professional counselors and work/life specialists, web access to a broad array of informative and support resources, and 24/7 phone support services. Employees interested in learning more should visit unum.com/lifebalance or call (800) 854-1446.
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA) holders can now seek reimbursement for over-the-counter drugs and medicines without a note of medical necessity or prescription from a physician. Expenses incurred after December 31, 2019, qualify. To learn more, visit the BASIC website.
  • The CARES Act allows employees to access retirement plan funds with favorable tax implications through December 31, 2020. Prior to making any decisions regarding retirement funds, the University strongly encourages employees to discuss their options with a tax preparer, financial advisor or representatives of TIAA and Fidelity.
Students

Can students work remotely?

Student employees are not permitted to work remotely in response to the COVID-19 work arrangement.  Supervisors must complete the appropriate Remote Student Employment - Exception Request Form if you are seeking an exception.  All requests will be reviewed by the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs & Diversity.  You will be notified if you are granted an exception and your student employee is permitted to work remotely. Summer semester request forms are valid April 26, 2021 through August 22, 2021.  Beginning with Fall 2021 and the return to campus with pre-pandemic services, student employees will not be permitted to work remotely.  The exception request process has been discontinued for employment beginning August 23, 2021.

If your student employee needs VPN access to accomplish their job duties (e.g. Banner, Argos, Percussion, and shared drive access), the supervisor must complete the appropriate VPN request form:

* Due to the return to campus expectations for Fall 2021, VPN access approvals will be extremely limited.  Student employees are expected to work in-person on campus, negating the need for VPN access.

As a student employee, am I eligible for sick pay related to COVID-19?

You may be eligible. Refer to H.R.6201. If you have any questions, please email uhr@oakland.edu.

Will student employees who are out of work until this COVID-19 is controlled be able to apply for unemployment?

Yes, you need to apply with the local unemployment office, which determines who is eligible for unemployment benefits.

How many hours can student employees work during this time?

Student employees may work 25 hours per week through the end of the Winter 2020 semester. International students however can only work up to 20 hours per week.

Temporary and Casual

Am I eligible for sick pay related to COVID-19?

You may be eligible. Refer to H.R.6201. If you have any questions, please email uhr@oakland.edu.

If I am out of work due to COVID-19, will I be able to apply for unemployment?

Yes, you need to apply with the local unemployment office, which determines who is eligible for unemployment benefits.

Remote Work
  • As a general rule, Administrative Professionals may work 1-2 days a week remotely if a Flexible Work Arrangement request has been submitted and approved by their supervisor. In certain cases, supervisors may approve more flexible work arrangements for a transition period that will end prior to the start of the Fall 2021 semester. Clerical Technicals are not currently allowed to work remotely. Casuals and Temp employees cannot work remotely.
  • Please visit University Technology Services for more information on remote work resources.
General Work Environment

Rotating work schedules – Supervisors will have authority to establish rotating work schedules for their reports as part of efforts to address any infection prevention measure needs within the workspaces they manage.

Workspace modifications – Workspace managers will have authority to modify arrangements in order to address any necessary infection prevention measures. Workspaces will remain the same as they were prior to the pandemic unless modifications are necessary.

Meeting guidelines/resources – Meetings can be held in-person, virtually or in a hybrid format. Meeting plans should incorporate options for unvaccinated individuals to practice established infection prevention protocols.

Door closing allowances/restrictions – Workspace managers have authority to set guidelines . There is no university-wide restriction in place.