Extended state workplace restrictions unlikely to change U-M plans


University of Michigan officials said the workplace restrictions extended by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer are not likely to affect current on-site campus work or plans to gradually resume on-site work in the coming months.

On April 12, Whitmer announced the state plans to extend workplace restrictions for six months to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Richard Holcomb, associate vice president for human resources, said the state restrictions do not prohibit on-site work. Rather, they keep protocols in place such as face coverings, cleaning and training to limit transmission so employees may safely transition back to the workplace.

U-M schools, colleges and units have been following state and federal guidance when determining which roles require full or partial on-site work.

Many employees currently are working on-site because remote work is not feasible. Others will continue to work remotely and gradually return to campus to support the university’s plans for a more residential fall semester or other necessary services.

“Anytime conditions change, or a new restriction is put in place, it can create confusion or anxiety for faculty and staff,” Holcomb said. “If there’s one lesson we’ve learned in the last year, it’s that we need to be flexible, empathetic and keep safety as our top priority.”

Some employees currently working from home may end up doing so longer than previously planned — mid-summer for Ann Arbor campus staff and Sept. 13 for Michigan Medicine — depending on health conditions, government restrictions or other factors. Employees will continue to be notified by their supervisor or department leader regarding specific requirements for work. This includes any modifications to previously announced plans for their unit.

Units will provide employees advance notice before scheduling employees to return to on-site work.


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