If the University closes due to an H1N1 outbreak, am I required to come to work?
If your position is designated as ‘Mandatory’ under OSP or UNC policies during a communicable disease closure, you are required to physically report to your work site. Very few employees are expected to be designated as ‘mandatory” if the University officially closes.
If your position is designated as a ‘Key’ position, you may be required to work from home or another remote location.
If your position is neither Mandatory nor Key, you will not be required to come to work if the university officially closes.
Can I refuse to work during an H1N1 emergency?
Not if your position has been designated as Mandatory or Key.
‘Mandatory’ employees may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment, for willful failure to report for, or remain at, work if required.
Similarly, ‘Key’ employees may be subject to disciplinary action if their work can be performed offsite but they refuse to work. For additional information, please contact Employee Relations.
If the University closes due to a pandemic or communicable disease, and employees are sent home, do I get paid?
Yes. If the University closes, employees who have been told not to report to work (employees other than those designated as either ‘Mandatory’ or ‘Key’) are granted paid leave for up to thirty (30) calendar days that the institution is closed, at the same rate they would have received if they been working (including shift premium pay normally received).
Subject to the availability of funds, ‘Mandatory’ employees who are required to physically report to work, are paid time and one-half pay for all hours they work or are required to remain on-site; if overtime funds aren’t available, they will get the additional ½ time as comp time. Employees designated as ‘Key’ and can perform work from home or another remote location, will be paid at their regular rate of pay.
Can a supervisor require that I telecommute during an outbreak of the H1N1 virus or something similar?
Maybe. Depending on the circumstances associated with the outbreak, including directives, an employee may be required to telecommute if the employee is provided written notice designating them as ‘Key.” Key employees who are expected to work from home should complete the NC State Telecommuting Form.
For additional information on telecommuting, go to: http://www.ncsu.edu/hr/classcomp/wrk_sched.asp#telecommuting
Employees designated as ‘Mandatory’ are required to physically report to their work site in during communicable disease emergencies.
Does a supervisor have to grant my request to work from home if I’m concerned about potential H1N1 exposure?
Can a manager send me home if I’ve been diagnosed with H1N1? What if I have symptoms but don’t have a medical diagnosis?
Yes. If you have been diagnosed by a healthcare provider with actual or “presumed” H1N1 flu – or if management believes you are exhibiting symptoms associated with H1N1 – you may be required to not report to work, or to leave the workplace.
Employees should not return to work until they are no longer considered contagious, as advised by their healthcare provider. Managers should consult with Employee Relations at 515-6575 in deciding whether to send an apparently-sick employee home.
If I am diagnosed with H1N1 and is out of work for at least three (3) days, does the absence qualify under the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?
The flu typically doesn’t qualify as a serious health condition under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), so a case of H1N1 wouldn’t automatically qualify. A severe case of H1N1 requiring hospitalization or multiple doctor visits may qualify, whether for the employee’s own illness or to care for an immediate family member. Contact the Leave Administration Office at 515-4317 for assistance.
If I need time off to care for an eligible family member diagnosed with H1N1, what types of leave may be used?
Leave-earning employees may use sick, annual, or bonus leave -- as well as any accrued, unused comp time or furlough leave -- to cover absences.
If an employee is not eligible for leave, what type of leave can be taken if the employee must stay home to care for a family member affected by H1N1?
Under certain circumstances and with supervisor approval, employees may take a leave without pay to cover their absence. Nine-month faculty who do not earn leave may remain in a paid status if the absence qualifies under FMLA. Temporary employees are not paid for absences.
May I apply for “voluntary shared leave” if I must miss work due to my own -- or an immediate family member’s -- H1N1 illness?
Probably not. The Voluntary Shared Leave (VSL) program requires absences for a prolonged period time [20 days or more]. Since H1N1 typically lasts only 2-5 days, VSL will probably not be applicable. Contact the Leave Administration Office at 515-4317 for information on VSL.
If my child’s daycare or public school closes due to H1N1, what options do I have?
Parents should not bring children to the workplace, regardless of whether the child is sick or well. Employees may use sick, annual, or bonus leave – as well as any accrued, unused comp time or furlough leave -- to cover an absence necessitated by school/daycare closures. Under certain circumstances, and with supervisor approval, employees may also take a leave without pay to cover their absence. Additionally, employees may “make up” time in the same way as is permitted for during adverse weather events.
Will NCSU require that I provide proof of medical clearance to return to work if I’ve had H1N1?
NCSU will not require a written release from a medical provider after a bout of H1N1; however, employees must use good judgment by returning to work only when they know they are symptom-free.
Will my health benefits continue during a closure due to H1N1 or other communicable disease outbreak?
Yes. Employee’s health benefits remain intact if the University or a work unit is forced for close due to a communicable disease outbreak.
If I am diagnosed with H1N1 or other communicable disease and believe it is work-related, can I file a worker’s compensation claim?
Diseases like H1N1, which are prevalent in the community and are not necessarily contracted in the course of duty, are not generally compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act. Some exceptions may include emergency responders and medical providers.
For additional information, see these guiding policies:
Office of State Personnel: Communicable Disease Emergency Policy (for SPA staff)
UNC: Pandemic and Communicable Disease Emergency Policy (for EPA professionals)