The safety of our employees is our top
priority. DOA has been working with the Department of Health and Social
Services (DHSS) and other agencies since the outbreak began, and it
continues to coordinate closely with state leaders and partners. The state’s
emergency planning has us well placed to respond to threats such as this,
as well as provide information and prevention tips while also working to
prevent undue stress or panic.
Today, Governor Dunleavy issued AO 315
directing DHSS to manage and monitor COVID-19 developments and the State’s
response. The AO also alerted all state entities to the seriousness of
COVID-19. (see attached)
- Our partners at
DHSS tell us the public should take basic prevention strategies at
home and at work to help slow the spread of the virus. More
information is available on the DHSS
- The priority is to slow the spread of this virus. Keeping
Alaskans healthy and minimizing our risk requires all of us working
- State health care professionals say the easiest way to
do that is to practice good hygiene and stay home when sick.
- Stay home when you’re sick, even if it’s just coughing
or sneezing. Coronavirus symptoms can be very mild.
We strongly encourage telework, if your position allows. Otherwise,
use sick leave or contact your union for leave donations. Please
contact your HR manager if you have any questions.
- Here are prevention steps to take at home and at work as
recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
your hands and use
alcohol-based sanitizer frequently
touching your face,
mouth, nose and eyes
your coughs and sneezes
social distancing (more than 6 feet)
away from people who are sick
you have coronavirus symptoms – fever, cough and shortness of breath –
contact your health care provider about what your next steps may be. SOA
employees should also notify their supervisor so the agency can take any
announced new recommendations to help prevent or slow the spread of
guidance is here.
- Frequently clean and disinfect high-touch and common
surfaces. Use procurement methods authorized by your department. These
EPA-approved disinfectants are often still in stock:
- If your bathroom sink does not have a handwashing
reminder, please print and hang the attached flyer as
- Attached is new guidance from the CDC on workplace safety. Feel free to post around your
- Supervisors are strongly encouraged to
develop situational (ad hoc) telework agreements/expectations with all
telework eligible employees, currently without a signed telecommute
work agreement, who need to work remotely for a prolonged period due
to COVID-19. The SOA telecommute
policy is here.
- DOA is deploying Microsoft Teams this week to all
Departments (except Governor Office staff). Teams allows employees to
videoconference from video-enabled computers. Per CDC guidance, we
encourage staff to use videoconferencing for meetings whenever
possible, even in the workplace. OIT will be scheduling training for
Teams for those who need it.
- DOA is offering supervisors training this week on how to
manage telework employees. The Division of Personnel will send an
e-mail notifying supervisors of times for the on-line training. A
recording will be available afterwards.
- DOA is asking for information from each department on
which employees need computers, phones, or Virtual Private Networks
(VPN) for telecommuting or internet connectivity. Starting with those
employees identified as essential for continuity of operations during
an emergency, we will begin deploying equipment as expeditiously as
- The Travel Freeze issued by the Chief of Staff on March 9
applies to all out-of-state travel, even if all expenses were
to be paid by a third party.
continue to keep you posted as information develops. Feel free to direct
any COVID-19 questions to DHSS. Questions related to SOA workforce can be
directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.