Update on COVID-19 Crisis

The following is a message by Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer Randy Korgan and Staff (April 3, 2020):

This morning, Teamsters Local 1932 sent a letter to County of San Bernardino leadership (Gary McBride, Chief Executive Officer, Bob Windle, Labor Relations Chief, and Diane Rundles, Human Resources Director) regarding masks that must be made available for County Teamsters. Shortly after, our union received a commitment from the County to secure masks for employees. If you are not a County Teamster, please contact your Business Agent for information on the status of similar requests. The message our union sent is copied below:

In this unprecedented time, we are aware of the supply shortage and how difficult it is to have PPE for the Employees of San Bernardino County.

We believe with the rapid spread of COVID-19 it is necessary that all your employees and our members specifically be provided masks when requested while they’re working. We understand that the CDC guidelines on this subject do not require it at this point; however, we would not be subjected to this crisis in this way had other organizations been more proactive.

It is our position that essential employees need to be protected in this time to continue to perform this very important service to the community.

If you have any questions, please contact me so we may discuss this very important and time-sensitive issue.

The following is a message by Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer Randy Korgan and Staff (April 1, 2020): 

Around the clock, in this ongoing public health and economic crisis, the staff of Teamsters Local 1932 is diligently working with the departments throughout the County and Cities of our region. Many Teamsters are reaching out about their concerns, and we are making progress in our conversations with employers and specific departments. For now, we can report what has been worked out with the County Transitional Assistance Department. If you are not a TAD Teamster, please reach out to your Business Agent if you have questions regarding your department or employer’s progress.

Before we move on, we want to thank all of you that continue to work hard during these difficult times. We must take the time to specifically acknowledge and thank the workers of Arrowhead Regional Medical Center. You are doing the work that needs to be done to ensure that the hospital can brace for the surge of patients that is to come. Local 1932 is participating in daily conference calls with the hospital as they prepare for the next steps in this ongoing public health crisis. Our fellow Teamsters there will be face to face with COVID-19 every moment over the next few weeks or months. Please, take a second to reach out to an ARMC employee and thank them. We salute their call to service and their contributions to our community.

Teamsters Local 1932 Business Agents and the Department of Transitional Assistance have been communicating daily to ensure the needs and concerns on both ends are being managed during this unprecedented time.

As the Business Agents are fielding calls from the membership, they are looking at the issues and concerns as well as potential resolutions, which are then taken forward to TAD Leadership.

Earlier this week, during the conference call, several items were addressed that will bring some support and relief to those essential workers responsible for the processing of Cash Aid, Food Stamps, Homeless Assistance, and Medical.

Per the Department, they sent out a survey with results due back this week on telecommuting. TAD has also been working with PDD on the written guidelines for this new process along with ISD to get the lines set-up that will allow for employees to work from home. The Department intends to allow as many employees as possible to move into a position of telecommuting from home during these difficult times.

As many departments and hospitals in the County struggle to find the necessary personal protective gear, the Department shared their plan of continuing to order and distribute the needed supplies daily to those on the front lines, i.e., meeting with the public daily.

TAD members communicating with the Union is essential. We have been able to resolve many issues once we are made aware of the need. The Department has been responsive and proactive in getting out clarifications to management in the offices.

Some of the decisions/resolutions that have been made:

1. Employees are allowed to wear masks brought from home. Print must be professional and in line with the dress code. Examples of those not allowed are skulls/crossbones or sports teams.

2. The ability to work from home is being ramped up. Working from home along with 4/10 and 9/80 schedules, in addition to expanded hours, will reduce the number of people in the office.

3. The Department is currently waiting on the delivery of thermometers. In the meantime, they are ensuring that sick employees are not coming into the office to work. Sick employees will be asked to go home, and if they refuse, they will be sent home on compulsory leave.

4. Department is observing social distancing. (If your office isn’t, contact your BA immediately)

5. Lysol can be used on your desk; however, it can’t be sprayed into the air in other work areas.

Management has committed to do a walk-through with the staff of Teamsters Local 1932 and stewards at TAD locations to see firsthand what is working and what needs to be changed.

We are continuing with weekly conference calls with the Department and Human Resources and will update you as resolutions are reached.

The following is a message by Teamsters Local 1932 Executive Board & Staff:

This afternoon, Teamsters Local 1932 and County leadership reached an agreement on emergency bargaining related to the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19. If you are not a County employee, please connect with your Business Agent for updates regarding your employer.

The final terms of the agreement result in strong public services, the protection of jobs and benefits for as many County employees as possible, as well as your safety on the job. Please read the documents linked at the end of this message to see the agreement and what it means for your job.

Our union worked with the County so that the documents outlining the terms of our agreement provide clarity for members in a concise manner. Please subscribe to the Teamster View podcast right now as a special episode explaining the agreement in detail will be released tonight.

It’s important to know that while public agencies and private employers around the country are beginning lay-offs, our union has continued to secure the job of every member we represent at the County, whether they have been deemed essential or not. For now, both essential and non-essential employees are also guaranteed job security and benefits if you need to take leave for issues related to this crisis.

For those of you who went through the Great Recession, we must recognize the challenges that we will be facing over the coming months, and perhaps years. While we can’t predict how the economy will appear then, our union is communicating with the County daily to protect the interest of our members and their future. We will update you as the situation develops.

The County has issued guidelines for employees that adhere to recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Please watch out for one another by encouraging these common-sense practices — wash your hands, don’t touch your face, and practice social distancing.

To ensure that you are working in a safe environment, please reach out to your Supervisor as soon as possible when concerns arise. Keep your Business Agent informed so that our union may help to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.

In closing, it’s important to recognize that these are unprecedented times, and we will be tested in many ways. This crisis will require each of us to work together. Our union is dedicated to ensuring that we get through this as one. Thank you, Teamsters, for keeping our country running. You are heroes, and we are proud to represent you each and every day.


Agreement Regarding Public Health Emergency During COVID19

Families First Coronavirus Response Act/Paid Leave Overview

The following is a message from Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer Randy Korgan and Local 1932 Staff (Posted late March 19, 2020):
Tonight, Governor Gavin Newsom issued a stay at home order for residents of California. Many members have reached out to Teamsters Local 1932 to inquire as to how this will affect them at work tomorrow. Our union has reached out to the County of San Bernardino and they have informed us that employees that would normally report to work tomorrow need to report if it’s their scheduled day. If it is not your scheduled day to work tomorrow, then expect to hear news of your status by Monday. Their intent is to work through the night and into the morning to develop a plan for County operations moving forward. County leadership has also informed the union that they will be communicating this to employees through their own platforms sometime tonight. We have decided to get this to you first so that you can make proper arrangements, as well as to help broadcast the County’s message widely. Thank you, Teamsters, for your crucial work in getting residents the critical services they need during this unprecedented public health crisis. We aim to update you as the situation develops.

The following is a message from Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer Randy Korgan and Local 1932 Staff (Posted early March 19, 2020):
These are incredibly challenging times, and we first want to say thank you for all the work you are doing to serve a community in need during this crisis. The economic fallout is immeasurable at this point. We serve one of the most economically challenged areas in the country. The community is depending on your brave service as we move further into the challenges of this crisis.
On Wednesday, March 18, 2020 Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer Randy Korgan and Staff met with the Directors of several County Departments and Human Resources to discuss the safety of members who are working to provide services to the community during the COVID-19 health crisis, in addition to operational concerns, and access to leave balances when affected. For members who work in non-County agencies, we encourage you to reach out to your Business Agent for updates on discussions covering these issues.
We must all realize the increasingly fast-changing nature of this situation, and we aim to be as fluid as possible when handling future challenges. The County has agreed to quickly meet on Department specific issues as they arise.
The following issues were discussed on Wednesday:
  • Telecommuting: Teamsters Local 1932 requested that the County allow any employees whose job duties can be done remotely to telecommute. The County agreed to identify the job classifications which can be done via telecommuting as quickly as possible, and those assignments are currently under review. Many positions have already been notified that telecommuting can begin immediately. The County will look at all requests and approve as many as possible, taking into account capability, job function, and resources. Special circumstances, including employees 65+, employees with childcare issues, and employees responsible for the care of elderly relatives, will be prioritized when possible.
  • Remote location is a possibility for those who may have a weakened immune system or other health concerns and will be reviewed much like ADA accommodations.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting work areas: Real Estate Services is working with the janitorial services to ensure that cleaning is done more frequently and that supplies such as hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes are available in the office. The County is doing an expedited purchase order of necessary items. It is strongly recommended that members assist in their work areas by washing hands frequently and helping wipe down their immediate surfaces with disinfectant wipes. Janitorial employees will be focused on public spaces and touch-prone areas.
  • Areas open to the public: Teamsters Local 1932 identified protocols that could be implemented to minimize contact in situations that public contact is required, those are under review by the County.
  • Leave Balances: The County has agreed to allow members to utilize any leave balance for situations including care of a child, self-quarantine, illness quarantine, etc. If an employee does not have enough leave time accrued or runs out, as a result, their leave balances will be allowed to go into the negative. This is a temporary modification to the MOU, and it must go to the Board of Supervisors next week for approval.
  • Several changes have been made to laws governing Disability, Unemployment usage, and FMLA during this time to allow employees easier access to the benefits. Some of the changes include receiving UIB due to inability to come to work because of school closures, waived one-week waiting period, shortened time frame to be eligible to FMLA, etc. If you have questions, please review the information on the EDD website.
The processes for dealing with COVID-19 are changing daily, requiring flexibility on the part of all involved parties. Teamsters Local 1932 will continue to meet with the County, Cities, and Agencies to ensure that to every degree possible, our members are provided the safest environment possible in which to work. Updates will be provided as they come.
Again, we thank you for being on the frontlines to assist our communities during this time. Your hard work and dedication are greatly appreciated.