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COVID Testing Guidelines

On May 10, 2023, UPE and representatives for both the 008 and 005 bargaining units met with the County for a second time to discuss the changes in the COVID-19 testing guidelines by Cal/OSHA. In our previous meeting, UPE proposed that the County still allow those being mandated to test to have the ability to go to their chosen medical provider rather than testing at the worksite. The County rejected that proposal, saying that if employees wanted to go to a provider for testing, they can use their own leave balances. The rejection of our proposal led to us having a second meeting to discuss other proposals.

Because the guidelines call for a “testing proctor” to be available for a person mandated to test onsite, we discussed the various ways it could be done.

  1. An employee could take the test at their desk and take a picture with the computer screen in the background showing the date and time.

  2. The testing could be proctored by a supervisor or manager via video conference.

While the State guidelines do require testing or exclusion from the worksite during outbreak status, UPE is completely against requiring any worker mandated to do this in a way that makes it easier for the employer. UPE would like our members to have options, but we have already met with the County on the manner in which the video cameras will be used and testing for COVID-19 was not one that we agreed to. We have proposed that video conference testing be taken off the table and give workers a choice to use their electronic equipment for testing or have an “in-person” proctor available while a worker is testing.

There was also a lot of confusion about the testing requirements, and it appeared that some work locations were doing it differently than others. Because the size of the office space or the zones within them have different requirements, the testing requirements are also different. See below for details.

  • Work locations under 400,00 cubic feet that are in outbreak: all workers are considered in close contact and required to test.

  • Work locations over 400,00 cubic feet that are in outbreak: only those within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes are required to test.

Thank you to Jennifer Avalo, Monica Stephens, Ryan McClain, Daniel De Los Reyes, Patrick Hunter, Erin Crocker, Nichole Gorman, Stephanie McCall, and Chis Jenkins.


FLYER - COVID-19 Guidelines 5.10.23
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