(May 28, 2022) An addendum to a February 2022 reintegration and telework policy memorandum of understanding (MOU) has been approved to reflect recent changes to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines, including relevant reintegration metrics and schedule notifications.
This addendum, which supplements and amends Section 3, “Phasing/Reintegration Steps,” of the MOU between the National Weather Service (NWS) and NWSEO, comes as a result of the federal government’s rescindment of an evacuation order which, up until recently, included phased limits on building occupancy due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the original MOU provided an orderly process for the reintegration of our workforce, the language has since become outdated and this addendum addresses these changes.
Phasing/Reintegration Steps: As the public health threat has evolved, the CDC has provided new metrics that provide a more accurate assessment of local COVID-19 conditions. The Safer Federal Workforce has adopted these metrics to make necessary mitigations and ensure the federal workforce’s safety.
A Flexible Reintegration Period will extend through July 31, 2022. During this period, all bargaining unit (BU) employees may return to the worksite on a voluntary basis or as required for mission critical onsite work consistent with NOAA COVID-19 Community Level Mitigation Measures and their approved telework agreements.
Supervisors may use situational telework and schedule flexibilities for a BU employee to allow up to 100% telework during this period to mitigate mission risk and impacts to returning employees, including those who have dependent care or transportation logistical challenges.
Following the Flexible Reintegration Period, NWS will resume full onsite operations consistent with NOAA COVID-19 Community Level Mitigation Measures and the February MOU language.
Telework days added or approved when CDC Community Levels change will be noted on the fixed schedule. These telework days will remain in place until the next fixed schedule is posted.
In instances where facility area CDC Community Levels move from Low to Medium or Medium to High, employees will be notified no later than Monday of the following week for the opportunity for additional situational telework or for maximized situational telework.
Updates to the facility’s NOAA COVID-19 Community Level Mitigation Measures will be posted at each facility’s entrance, and a status message will be sent to all facility employees by email no later than close of business on Fridays.
With these changes in place, the focus remains the same: workplace safety and recognizing the remarkable accomplishments of NWS staff over the last two years.
Click here to read the full MOU addendum.