Working under Governor's order to close non-essential businesses

March 23, 2020

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Many of you are likely aware of the order Gov. Charlie Baker issued this morning closing all non-essential businesses as of tomorrow (Tues., March 24) at noon. At this time, all departments should have determined which employees are essential and will continue to report to work on campus, and which employees will begin teleworking if they have not already. If not, each department MUST be ready to assign employees to their respective categories by the start of their shifts tomorrow.

We do have permission to continue to provide the services needed by our students remaining on campus, per Gov. Baker's order allowing essential employees to continue their work, including:

Educators and staff supporting public and private emergency childcare programs, residential schools for students with disabilities, K-12 schools, colleges, and universities for purposes of facilitating distance learning, provision of school meals, or performing other essential student support functions, if operating under rules for social distancing.

We are determined to do our best to ensure that changes to our operations caused by the coronavirus will not impact our existing commitments to pay and continue existing benefits for our employees. At this time, therefore, we will honor existing commitments for our faculty and staff for the foreseeable future. This will include staff paid from grants, in compliance with federal guidance. These policies will be revisited as the situation evolves. Vice President for Human Resources, Robin Switzer, will have more information about this in a message to all of you later today.

Thank you all for the flexibility and dedication you have displayed throughout this outbreak. For additional information, please see the email sent to students a few moments ago.

Sincerely,

Ron Liebowitz, President
Lisa M. Lynch, Provost
Stew Uretsky, Executive Vice President, Finance and Administration

 


Dear Students,

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker has ordered that all non-essential businesses in Massachusetts must close, effective tomorrow (Tues. March 24) at noon, in an effort to mitigate the COVID-19 virus. Grocery stores, pharmacies, medical facilities, and gas stations, will remain open, but most other businesses will be expected to close. While this is not a "shelter in place" order, the intent is to limit peoples' movements and contacts as much as possible. The Brandeis campus remains open for students who are approved to remain on campus or who have move-out dates in the next few days; however, please be prepared for more changes to services. Food services will continue to operate on the more limited schedule announced last week, and all student support departments are either moving to online delivery of services or already have moved. Students living off-campus in Waltham or elsewhere should be aware that the governor has also asked that public transportation only be used for essential needs. Please note this order does not prevent students from leaving campus to move to their homes.

Students who are staying on campus will receive information soon from the Department of Community Living about new room assignments. Reassignments may begin within 24 hours, so students still living on campus should prepare now for moving to a new room. These assignments are being made based on recommended guidelines for maintaining health in communal living.

Students, both on and off-campus, are reminded to practice social distancing — including staying at least 6 feet apart from other individuals — and of the new restrictions regarding gatherings on campus announced last week:

And please, remember to use good hygiene, including washing hands frequently, coughing or sneezing into your elbow or a tissue, and most importantly, staying home or in your residence hall room if you are sick.

Sincerely,

Ron Liebowitz, President
Lisa M. Lynch, Provost
Stew Uretsky, Executive Vice President, Finance and Administration