Emergencies And Natural Disasters Policy

Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission

Emergencies and Natural Disasters Policy

ADM-025

INTENT
To maintain normal operations in the event of inclement weather, a natural disaster or other emergency while keeping employees safe.

POLICY
It is the policy of Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission to maintain routine agency operations to the extent possible during inclement weather, natural disasters and other emergency situations, while safeguarding employees and agency facilities.

PROCEDURE

All offices and departments shall maintain their posted operating hours. Exceptions to this may include closure for staff meetings, certain natural disasters, damage to facilities, and attendance at community meetings and agency functions that are part of your job duties.

In the event of inclement weather or other disaster, employees should consider personal safety when deciding to commute to your workstation. If you decide to stay home or leave work early, you must contact your supervisor. Your supervisor can approve requests for time off if weather or emergency situations prevent you from working as scheduled. Leave taken due to inclement weather may be charged to sick, annual or personal leave, as available. Employees should complete the Leave Request Form (HR-004) upon your return to work.

When Head Start Centers are closed and Head Start staff are informed not to report to work, the missed day will be made up at the end of the school year.

There may be situations when certain agency facilities must be closed. If it becomes necessary to close agency facilities due to damage to the facility or some other conditions which makes the facility temporarily unsafe or unusable, the employee is responsible for making contact with their immediate supervisor to determine whether and where they should report to work. Employees at that facility may be directed to report to a different location or given other instructions for the day. Supervisors may approve requests for employees to temporarily work from home if doing so allows completion of work assignments.

In the event it becomes necessary to cancel program activities, the responsible Department Director will discuss the options with the Executive Director before the decision is made to cancel the activity. Once the decision has been made, it is the Department Director’s responsibility to insure that the affected employees are notified of the program schedule.

In the event of a facility closure or program activity cancellation, the employee is responsible for notifying any clients, colleagues, volunteers, etc. of the need to close a facility, and rescheduling any meetings or appointments. For those programs with regular participants (i.e., Head Start; YouthBuild), program staff should have at ready access client phone numbers and emergency contact information in the event a center or activity must be cancelled for an emergency or for inclement weather. The employee may not assume that a community event or meeting is automatically cancelled, but should attempt to verify that fact.

Department Directors and supervisors should provide their employees with their personal contact information so that the employee can contact them to discuss the disaster situation. Conversely, supervisors should have employees’ contact information in case the employee needs to be alerted about a disaster situation.

An emergency situation in one part of the service territory may not similarly affect other parts of the region. Program directors and supervisors are responsible for checking with all of their direct reports to determine the status of the situation in their area. If it is determined that a facility will be closed, managers should discuss with staff the planned activities for the day and what steps are needed to cancel those activities, including notifying participants. When a center or site is closed, responsible staff should post a sign on the door to that effect, and if appropriate, provide an emergency contact number on the sign. Employees must notify their supervisor should this action be deemed necessary.

In the case of Head Start centers where there are children and buses to consider, the existing policies and procedures of the Head Start program will govern reactions to snow and ice emergencies. Employees are required to check with their supervisor before taking any action that may endanger children or agency equipment. Employees are never authorized to leave children unattended under any circumstance.

Supervisors should discuss inclement weather procedures and planning with employees, including leave options, before the winter season arrives.

The following forms are used for this policy:

ADM-015 Emergency Contact Information Sheet
ADM-022 Emergency Contact list for 717 Madison Avenue
HR-004 Leave Request