Lackawanna County was one of the first counties across the Commonwealth to enact COVID-19 policies for employees. According to Business Agent Michele Willard, “Lackawanna County has risen to the occasion when it comes to providing health and safety guidelines to county employees during the COVID-19 Outbreak.”
The county relaxed its leave donation program meaning that members can donate an unlimited number of leave hours to non-essential employees. Employees who want to give leave must maintain a 15-day balance for themselves. Non-essential employees may use the leave as they may need it, including to cover for the lack of child care.
Lackawanna implemented telework and staggered shifts in certain agencies quickly. The county is also allowing non-essential employees to volunteer to work in a short-staffed department. Working in different departments is strictly voluntary, and employees will not be disciplined if they choose not to.
Many employees who have been with the county for several years said they would be happy to donate leave to their co-workers. It is refreshing to see members coming together to help each other during this difficult time.
As we enter week four of the COVID-19 outbreak in Lackawanna County, the Business Agents who represent members throughout the county remain in constant contact with county officials as well as shop stewards.