MMUA Releases Recommended COVID-19 Protocol for Members

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MMUA Releases Recommended COVID-19 Protocol for Members

March 18, 2020

MMUA on Tuesday, March 17, released Recommended COVID-19 Protocol for Member Organizations.

The document is designed to be used as a checklist to offer guidance so that all aspects of service are considered when planning for short duration, limited/restricted utility/city operations.

Guidelines To Consider:

  • Minimize contact with the public especially at large gatherings.
  • Review hours of operation to minimize potential contact with customers coming into utility buildings.
  • Close utility building to visitors. (Unless able to maintain physical separation.)
  • Consider posting signs on locked doors indicating where to drop payments. Include phone number to call to discuss issues, possibly requiring entry into building.
  • Ensure contractors that need to access buildings are educated on hand washing, minimizing contact with employees.
  • Assess the need for employees to enter customers’ homes unless in an emergency capacity.
  • Assess employee travel both for business and personal. Most utilities have banned travel and are keeping employees local.
  • Assess the need to screen and possibly quarantine employees that have recently traveled to ensure the health and safety of other employees.
  • Develop contingency plans for possible staffing shortages due to illness. Which critical jobs need to be conducted face to face and which can be done remotely.
  • Increase the frequency of sanitizing the areas where employees work and gather.
  • Management’s responsibility to keep employees away from fellow workers that are showing signs or symptoms of being sick, regardless of critical need.
  • Temporarily discontinue use of lunchrooms, breakrooms, etc. for groups. Conduct necessary meetings in large areas such as garages, warehouses, lobbies. Instruct employees to maximize distances between each other.
  • Consider special protection, assignments for, or expectations of employees who are at high risk for serious illness/death if infected. At present, this includes older workers and individuals with underlying health conditions.
  • Post accurate information from official/reputable sources.
  • Solicit ideas from all personnel concerning how to improve worker protection and how to provide essential services in various scenarios.
  • Consider interdepartmental information sharing and cross training to ensure continued operations of all departments if staffing becomes an issue.
  • Remind employees to avoid public comment or sharing inappropriate information on social media.
  • Now is the time to exercise participatory leadership skills. We are all in this together. We all have leadership roles, whether at work, at home, in our churches, neighborhoods or other organizations. Lead.

Educational Resources for Employees:

Mutual Aid Assistance:

  • MMUA will continue to make every effort to deploy and coordinate mutual aid when needed within the membership.
  • MMUA will coordinate with member utilities or nationwide network (when available and appropriate) for weather-related events and/or reduction in workforce due to illness.
  • Responding utilities need to recognize the potential risks of assisting another utility at this time and to make sure the employees they intend to send on the mutual aid call are healthy.
  • Requesting utilities need specific jobs tasks that need to be completed with approximate time frames.
  • When in need of assistance, please call Mike Willetts, MMUA’s Mutual Aid Coordinator (available 24-7) Mike Willetts – 612-802-8474.

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