** Last Updated March 17, 2020 at 1:00PM **
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads rapidly across the United States, our members are wondering how to keep themselves and their families healthy and safe.
HERE’S WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
Your Rights as Workers
Your union is fighting for you. Below is a summary of demands AFSCME 3299 sent to the University of California in light of the COVID-19 outbreak on March 12th.
“We are deeply concerned that Patient Care, Service, K7 & Hastings unit employees report not having received the necessary preparation, orientation, training, or PPE to safely care for patients, or to safely provide front-line services, at medical centers and campuses across the system, in light of the imminent safety and health hazards posed by COVID-19.
- Follow the precautionary principle and continue to exceed CDC and Cal/OSHA standards and guidelines,
- Provide AFSCME 3299 and all Patient Care and Service employees at medical centers and campuses with all relevant information and training,
- Test all ‘rule-out’ patients for COVID-19 upon admission to hospitals,
- Provide a minimum of 14 days paid administrative leave for all employees quarantined and all employees directed not to come to work,
- Follow all Health & Safety, Hours of Work, Positions & Appointments, and Layoffs protections (among others) in our contracts,
- Staff properly and refrain from using subcontractors to perform our work without providing them with paid sick leave, affordable health care benefits, and adequate COVID-19 preparedness training,
- Cease and desist from any threats of retaliatory disciplinary action for “unauthorized” employees wearing PPE,
- Include anti-discrimination protocols in the University’s response to COVID-19 in order to vigorously protect the rights of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) employees.
UPDATE 3.17: WE WON Paid Leave!
Yesterday, March 16th, UC announced it would expand the leave policy. Workers are eligible for up to 128 hours of paid administrative leave for COVID-19 related illness for themselves or a family member; loss of hours due to campus/department closures; childcare due to school or daycare closure.
While we are happy to win this demand, workers are still facing immediate urgent challenges during this time. We are urging UC to make a system-wide change to its catastrophic leave policy to allow workers to donate sick and vacation hours and use for all COVID-19 related needs, including campus closures.Take Action!
Health and Safety Protections we fought hard for and won.
We just won historic contracts for all of our members that include protections to front-line patient care and service workers health and safety on the job, including the right to refuse abnormally hazardous work assignments.
Best Practices to Protect Yourself and Others
- Clean your hands often
- Avoid close contact
- Stay home if you’re sick
- Cover coughs and sneezes
- Wear a facemask if you are sick
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces
We will continue to keep you posted on the latest development. For more information on what you need to do if you believe UC has violated your rights, contact your MAT leader, organizers, or please continue to visit this page for updates.