Winter Weather Alerts

It’s that time of the year again when we all hope that mother nature does her magic so we can get a few days “off” to cozy up to a warm fire or spend some time with family. While we work hard with our fingers crossed, please keep in mind the following information when the weather changes.

winter weather

 Severe Inclement Weather – This term signifies extreme/significant weather conditions that may have an impact on travel to or from any campus location. This term will be used on days when weather conditions either significantly worsen as the day progresses or are anticipated to improve as the day progresses.

 Campus open – This term indicates that one (1) or more campus locations are open to the public and that employees should be either at their place of duty or on their way. Specific department hours are set by the department supervisors.

 Late start – The college resumes normal operations at a time later than the usual posted hours of operation.

 Early closure* – The college ends normal operations at a time earlier in the day than the normal posted hours of operation for the college. The only personnel that will be allowed to remain on campus are employees listed as essential personnel.

*This should not be confused with suspended operations as early closure does not necessarily prevent work from being accomplished. Suspended operations has a catastrophic effect on most employees’ ability to perform their duties.

 Campus closed – This term is used to signify that one (1) or more campus locations are closed to the public and that employees should either be departing or already departed from their place of duty. The only personnel that will be allowed on campus are employees listed as essential personnel.

 Suspended Operations – The President or the President’s designee(s) may declare a temporary suspension of any or all College operations at one (1) or more campus locations due to an emergency situation that adversely affects College operations, public health, or the well-being and safety of employees and students.

Events which might require suspending operations include, but are not limited to:

  • Severe weather or natural disaster.
  • Spread of a communicable disease.
  • Fire or related hazard.
  • Immediate threat to the safety of the campus community.
  • Damage to or failure of GRC infrastructure, equipment or mechanical systems.

 First day of total suspended operations – Term used in conjunction with applicable state law and collective bargaining agreements that deals directly with compensation

Essential Personnel – Essential personnel are employees who are required to report to work even when (1) or more campus locations is declared closed because of suspended operations.

Campus location – Each campus will be referred by its location if not all locations are affected. If all locations are affected, notice will refer to all locations as “the college”.

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Stress Management at GRC

Posted on behalf of the Environmental Health and Safety Committee. The Environmental Health and Safety Committee evaluates and recommends ways to make our work environment safer for employees and students.

stressWhile stress may not be a physical or visible safety concern, it is still a concern. Everyone deals with some level of stress on a daily basis. Sometimes work pressures can increase an already high stress level. The approaching holiday season can also compound stress levels, making even simple tasks seem overwhelming. If left unchecked, stress can have many effects on our mental and physical well-being. The good news is that there are many resources to help manage stress and daily steps you can take to minimize its effects.

Getting outside for just a few minutes and breathing fresh air can make a big difference in how we handle stressful situations. Just getting up from your desk and walking around anywhere can help. Interacting with co-workers, eating lunch together and having a chance to laugh or smile can boost your mood immediately.

One of the many benefits to working at Green River College is the amazing setting. There are several miles of trails right outside the doors of our buildings. Walking along those trails is a great way to reduce stress levels. On sunny days, you can even walk out and see Mt. Rainier!

If you are feeling stressed please visit some of the following links to get tips on how to cope. There are many other resources not included here, and Green River College also makes counseling services available to both employees and students.

https://www.greenriver.edu/campus/campus-resources/counseling-services/

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/coping-with-stress/art-20048369

http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/work-stress.aspx

https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/stress-in-the-workplace.htm

Get Your Flu Shot!

Student Affairs and the Office of Human Resources & Legal Affairs are teaming up to bring you the annual flu immunization clinic by the Seattle Visiting Nurse Association.  The clinic will be held on Thursday, November 9th from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in theFlu Shot Emerald Room in the Student Union.

You don’t need to sign up for your flu shot, just show up with your completed Patient Consent Form on the day of the clinicSVNA also recommends you bring your insurance card to the clinic.  Completion of the Patient Consent Form prior to the clinic helps for a smooth flow and decreased wait time.

SVNA provides the standard Trivalent (three strains) or the Quadrivalent (four strains). The nurses carry a small amount of Thimerosal-Free (preservative free) which they offer to pregnant women as required by WA State regulations. The nurse may accommodate a request by non-pregnant participants for the T-Free vaccine if there are enough doses available at the time of the clinic.  SVNA generally gives the standard Trivalent vaccine to all non-pregnant participants unless requested otherwise.  SVNA does not offer the high dose vaccine for those over 65 years old, the egg-free vaccine, flu mist (nasal spray) or pneumonia vaccine.

Download a Patient Consent Form:  http://www.seattlevna.com/2017_Patient_Consent_Form_8-15-2017.pdf

What are the payment options?

  1. SVNA can bill directly for nearly all major insurance plans (they will be able to bill your PEBB Uniform or Kaiser plans).  The insurance information will be provided by you on the Patient Consent Form.  SVNA recommends you bring your insurance card to the clinic.
  2. Pay cash/check – If a participant is uninsured or if it’s a plan SVNA does not bill, the participant may pay in cash or by check at the time the vaccination is given.  SVNA does not take credit cards.  The standard Trivalent is $30; Quadrivalent is $40 and Thimerosal Free is $35.

 

If you have questions:  email sgordon@greenriver.edu or jhatleberg@greenriver.edu

Introducing: The Environmental Health and Safety Committee

Welcome to the new school year!  We’d like to introduce the Environmental Health and Safety Committee (EHSC).  The committee meets monthly to review and evaluate campus environmental health and safety issues, work on training, and make recommendations to the college.

caution-wet-floor

Every building on campus has a representative on the committee.  Representatives are elected each Spring Quarter to serve for the following year.

If you have concerns, you can talk to your building representative at any time.  The committee meets the first Monday of every month at 1:00 in the Board Room, and you are always welcome to attend.

Committee Charter

Minutes

Who do I contact if I see a potential health or safety hazard?

·         If it’s an immediate threat, call Safety at x2250 or x3350.

·         If it’s building- or grounds-related, you can call Facilities at x3333.  Don’t assume Facilities already knows about the situation; please call them if you see an issue.

·         You can talk to your EHSC representative at any time.

 

Adrienne Palmer x2741 CH
Amanda Clifford x2400 SU
Anicah Anderson x5003 Enumclaw/Kent/Auburn ext.
Connie Jones x2156 SH
Darlene Oathout x2313 RLC
Marvin Viney x2251 Campus Safety
Erin Tyler x4231 SC
Howard Valenzuela x4111 TT
Jennifer Dysart x2094 HL
Jenny Park x2503 SA/PE
Lauren Cline x4217 Health Services Representative
Marshall Sampson x3320 VP of HR and representing administration
Pete (Guadalupe) Morales x3606 CCA
Rob Olson x3386 Facilities
Robin Bowles x4278 PA
Rocco Wheatley x2595 HR
Ronald Riley x4859 SH
Scott Hemingway x3381 FO/WT
Seth Deister x2136 IV
Spunky Robinson x4418 TC
Tammy Shilipetar x2604 AD

Suspended Operations Explained

Over the past couple of weeks, meteorologists and psychics have been predicting blizzards, another ice age, attacks from terrifying monsters and even the end of days!

godzilla1
The last few may have been complete fabrications, but there have indeed been some recent weather scares leading to discussions about suspended operations.

What would this mean and how would this occur?

Regarding inclement weather and campus closure, each Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) has its own articles to reference, and all other employees should look to HR – 28, “Suspended Operations – Employee’s Leave Option.” It is certainly important to review the guidelines specific to you, but in the meantime the following summary should serve you well:

Notifications of campus closure (classes canceled, but the College is open for business) or suspended operations (campus closed to students and non-essential personnel*) will be made via the campus switchboard, website, schoolreport.org and our Green River Safety Alert system.

Faculty:
– Outlined in Article 6.4 “Emergency Weather Leave,” of the United Faculty CBA.
– Faculty may take up to 2 days (emergency weather leave) per year, non-accumulative.
– Additional days shall be made up through work agreed upon by the faculty member and their administrator, or through a prorated deduction in annual base pay.

Classified Represented:
– Outlined in Article 5.7 “Suspended Operations,” of the Classified Union CBA.
– After reporting to work, such employees will be compensated for hours worked on the first day of suspended operations.
– Those not required to work may request (and may be granted) a schedule change during the workweek.
– Those who are required to work will receive time and a half for work during the suspended operations.

Classified Non-represented, Exempt and Administrative Employees:
– Those scheduled/required to work, including employees dismissed during their shift, have no loss of pay on the first day.
– For the rest of the closure, such employees have several options:

  • Compensatory time (for overtime eligible)
  • Vacation leave
  • Personal Day
  • Sick leave (up to 3 days may be used)
  • Leave without pay (for overtime eligible)
  • Working remote or schedule changes must be agreed upon with the employee’s supervisor.

– Employees will receive regular pay for work during the suspended operation.

Any further questions? Please contact the Office of Human Resources.

*Essential personnel already know who they are, so if you are thinking, “I’m essential, too!” – of course you are…just not for the purpose of shutting down the campus.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Courtesy of US HealthWorks

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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Reduce the Risk!

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a painful and progressive condition of the hand and arm. It causes numbness, tingling and other symptoms as a result of a pinched nerve in the wrist. A number of factors contribute to CTS, which may include anatomy of the wrist, repetitive motion and certain underlying health problems.

If you spend a lot of time in front of a computer, you have a greater chance of getting CTS. Fortunately, there are specific hand and wrist exercises that can reduce the risk of being afflicted by this syndrome.

CTS

Do these exercises every hour. Exercising, taking breaks and stretching can minimize the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome.

 

  • Finger Push Ups: Firmly press each fingertip to its counterpart on the other hand. Spread fingers as far apart as possible. “Steeple” the fingers by separating your palms while keeping your fingertips together.
  • Hand Bends: Hold one hand in front of you with your elbow straight and fingers extended. Use the other hand to apply pressure to your outstretched hand until the wrist and fingers are pointing down at the floor. Hold that position for 20 seconds.
  • The Shake: Shake your hands vigorously as if you are trying to dry them off. This will help to prevent cramping.

Learn More

Source: 3 Wrist Exercises to Prevent Carpal Tunnel, HealthLine.com

Bridges: Building a Supportive Community

The Elimination of Campus Sexual Violence Act (Campus SaVE Act) — passed as part of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 — requires training that covers state law definitions of sexual assault, stalking, and relationship violence for faculty and staff.

GRC is using the Bridges Training program (follow the link to access the training as often as you like) to cover this information in detail as well as explain consent and explore its many complexities in sexual assault cases.

This is an ongoing campus wide coordinated effort, and we were proud to see such a strong presence from various departments throughout the training so far. (Over the three days of training, over 150 employees successfully completed the training.)

As a reminder, our Title IX coordinators are:

  • Student related concerns: Vice President of Student Affairs, Deborah Casey
  • Faculty & Staff concerns: Vice President of Human Resources and Legal Affairs, Marshall Sampson

Additionally, the following individuals are our Confidential Counselors and are all located in the Student Affairs and Success Building:

  • Liz Becker
  • Devon Klein
  • Min Lee Booth

Thank you again to everyone who made an effort to attend and complete the training! If you weren’t able to attend, please don’t worry as we will be sending out updates for new time slots in the coming months. Please keep in mind that this is mandatory training as well as an important topic.