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Return to the Workplace Update

Last month marked one year since we began living and working during the COVID-19 pandemic. For some faculty and staff, this has meant working remotely. For others, notably our employees who work directly with patients and students, some research positions and key individuals who have kept things running on-site, work has continued – under strict safety protocols – on campus. We are proud of, and inspired by, how our faculty and staff have come together during these challenging times.

Throughout the pandemic, the University has prioritized the health and safety of our community. As vaccination rates increase and public health guidelines ease, we have begun to prepare for an eventual full return to the workplace. A dedicated working group, in partnership with the CURT committee and the Department of Human Resources, is currently being formed to evaluate the right transition path for that return, taking in to account cleaning protocols, safe physical distancing, space needs, and any continued opportunities for full-time or part-time remote work. A new Remote Work Policy is being developed, along with a toolkit that school and unit leaders and managers can use to evaluate the needs of each department and make decisions about the eventual return of employees who have been working remotely. We anticipate these resources will be made available in the coming weeks.

As yet, there is no firm timeline for a full return to the workplace. For now, we ask that faculty and staff continue with the work practices arranged within their school or unit, which have served our community so well during this challenging time, recognizing that some changes may need to be made as operational needs evolve.

We will continue to share important developments as new policies and procedures are finalized. For ongoing updates, visit the University’s COVID-19 Resource Center.

On behalf of University leadership, thank you for your patience, flexibility, and unwavering commitment to the University of Rochester, our safety, and our future.

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