Coronavirus: IFB 3-Phase Back to Work Plan
Last Updated: 5/28/20
*IFB Solutions has remained open during the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S. Department of Defense deemed IFB Solutions essential to the security of our nation and a critical manufacturer for our Armed Forces. As the country reopens, we will follow a 3-Phase Back to Work Plan developed by IFB’s Coronavirus Response Team, which is in accordance with North Carolina’s 3-phase plan. This plan will change as our nation’s health experts monitor the coronavirus pandemic. Any updates will be posted below.
3-Phase Back to Work Plan
A New Normal: A Message from IFB Solutions President and CEO
IFB Solutions Employees,
I have some news to share with you as the coronavirus crisis is even closer to home.
Today, we received confirmation that an IFB employee tested positive for COVID-19. In accordance with privacy laws, we will not release information about this person, including identity. The safety of our employees is paramount. We will be closing our Winston-Salem facility until further notice to conduct a deep clean by trained staff. We will get in touch with employees who came in contact with the person who tested positive. All employees will receive further information via email and telephone messages. As promised, any employee who tests positive for COVID-19 or needs to quarantine will receive financial assistance through the IFB People First Fund.
We ask that you keep our employees in your thoughts and prayers. IFB Solutions is a family and we will get through this together.
David Horton, President and CEO, IFB Solutions
Other IFB Solutions Updates and Information:
IFB Solutions People First Fund
We are on a mission to support our employees and help them get through this coronavirus crisis together, as a family. On March 30th, we launched the People First Fund. Thanks to swift approval from our Board of Directors, we’ve helped hundreds of IFB employees who need financial assistance during these tough times. This fund also ensures a future for our summer camps and after school activities for children who are blind. Both programs are currently closed. The Fund also supports retraining for IFB employees. We are committed to keep this Fund active as we return to a new normal. Thank you to those who have donated. For additional info, visit ifbsolutions.org/donate.
3-Phase Return to Work Plan
IFB Solutions will return to work under normal operations in three phases. IFB’s Coronavirus Response Team has carefully laid out plans in accordance with North Carolina’s guidance. The plan will most likely change over time as we pay close attention to the spread of the coronavirus. Information will be sent to employees as changes occur. Management will work with IFB locations outside of N.C. to ensure a smooth transition.
Friday, May 8th — Phase 1 Begins
Friday, May 22nd — Phase 2 Begins
4-6 Weeks Later (Late June or Early July) — Phase 3 Begins
IFB Solutions Events
Our fundraising events will look much different this year. As we explore virtual opportunities, reschedule some events and make other adjustments, we encourage you to visit www.ifbsolutions.org/events to stay up to date. We’ll also post announcements and changes on social media. During our events, social distancing, group gathering, and other coronavirus prevention requirements will be enforced as necessary.
- Dining in the Dark, Little Rock has been cancelled
- Help Kids SEE, Winston-Salem has been cancelled
- All IFB Solutions Employee Banquets have been postponed
- IFB Scholarship Program has been postponed
- Business Essentials Graduation has been postponed
- Annual Golf Tournament, Asheville has been moved to September 24th and 25th, 2020
- (NEW) Firefly Social, Charlotte is August 13th, 2020
- Bingo for Bags, Little Rock has been moved to 2021
- Fireside Fundraiser Gala, Winston-Salem has been moved to 2021
- Santa’s Showdown 5k, Asheville is December 5th, 2020
Community Low Vision Centers
Phase 1: Remains the same.
Phase 2: Customers are seen by appointment only. Mask usage by patients and staff is required. Wellness checks are required prior to appointment. Eye exams are conducted at doctor’s discretion. *Winston-Salem CLVC is undergoing remodeling; expected open date for retail space is June 1st.
Phase 3: Same as phase 2. Mobile Vision clinics begin to operate again, however wellness checks must be conducted prior to appointment. Please limit the number of people in the Mobile Vision Unit as required by North Carolina group gathering requirements.
Twenty200 Eyewear Optical Shop at Coliseum Dr. in Winston-Salem
Phase 1: The store will open at limited capacity. Curbside assistance will be offered. Wellness procedures and protocols will be in place. Staff will be trained accordingly. Signage will be posted with new COVID-19 prevention procedures. Eyewear and surfaces will be sanitized frequently.
Phase 2: Same at phase 1. Capacity in the store expands.
Phase 3: Same as phase 1. Capacity in the store expands.
Base Supply Centers
As of right now, most of our BSCs in Washington D.C. are closed. The estimated reopen date varies from mid-May to mid-June, based on building protocol. Each store will follow the schedule of their respective federal building location as we open our doors. Most stores on military bases are open, but at limited capacity, meaning only a few people are allowed in a store at a time. Curbside pick-up is being offered all free-standing BSC locations. Coronavirus prevention cleaning protocols are in place. Products can be purchased at bscsource.com.
SEE Programs (After School, Camps and Activities)
Phase 1: Remains the same.
Phase 2: Remains the same.
Phase 3: Day camps and activities will resume. Wellness checks prior to gathering will be required. The number in gathering may be limited as required by North Carolina. Social distancing is encouraged.
*We are waiting on guidance from NC and the American Camp Association to determine if residential camps can open.
Other Updates, Policies and FAQs
IFB Solutions Travel Policy
Phase 1: Any air travel, international or domestic, requires a 14-day quarantine. The executive team will determine a return-to-work date. You will not be eligible for PFF assistance for the 14 days of missed work due to quarantine should you choose to not follow this travel policy. Any domestic travel (excluding air travel) is permitted without a quarantine requirement, but please avoid COVID-19 “hot spots” as outlined by the CDC. The executive team will approve business travel.
Phase 2: Same as phase 1.
Phase 3: Same as phase 2. Managers can approve any business travel and executive approval isn’t necessary.
Meetings, Tours and Visitors
Phase 1: Policies remain the same. Mask usage and Zoom meetings are encouraged. Health Alert Notice signs are posted at all entrances to IFB Solutions buildings and business locations asking those who are sick to stay outside of the building. Tours are being postponed. Anyone who is not an IFB employee is not allowed in the building including family and friends. You can be dropped off at the employee entrances. Packages are still being delivered.
Phase 2: Policies remain the same as phase one.
Phase 3: Meeting policies with employees, customers, donors and other external groups are relaxed. Please note what your state recognizes as an appropriate group gathering number. Mask usage and Zoom meetings are still encouraged. Wellness checks are required before any guests enter the building; Please ask your guest if he or she is experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms or have been exposed to anyone with COVID-19. IFB Adult Support Groups can meet in-person, however the number of people in a gathering will need to be monitored to meet North Carolina’s group gathering requirements. Continue to use Zoom if needed. Masks and social distancing encouraged.
*We will review the status of general assemblies as we confirm what constitutes an appropriate group gathering in accordance with Governor Cooper’s plan.
Phase 1: Teleworking continues.
Phase 2: The executive team works with managers to determine a rotating telework schedule within each department. Please practice social distancing and use Zoom frequently.
Phase 3: Same as phase 2.
IFB Solutions Medical Services and Wellness
All phases: In the event your primary care physician can’t be reached, Dr. Collins is available free of charge to any IFB Solutions employee whether full time, part time or temporary to evaluate your health or get your questions answered. We have nurses on staff at our Little Rock and Asheville facilities. Dr. Collins will work with any employee who has an immune deficiency to evaluate his or her situation. Stay home if you are sick for at least 72 hours and return to work when symptom free. Employee temperature checks continue. Mask usage is encouraged. Continue to wash your hands, social distance as necessary and follow CDC coronavirus prevention guidelines.
All phases: Coronavirus prevention protocols will remain in place. Our staff will continue to clean and disinfect our buildings thoroughly. We’ll keep in contact with our transportation services to make sure they are doing the same. Hand sanitizer, Lysol and other supplies will be distributed to staff as it is available.
As hackers are taking advantage of coronavirus fear, we ask that employees refrain from clicking on any suspicious emails and report anything that looks suspicious to IT. We’ve also implemented 2-factor authentication to protect our teleworking staff. Several employees have received text messages saying there is a case of COVID-19 at IFB Solutions. This is a scam. We will not communicate a COVID-19 case via text.
Returning to Work
All phases: High-Risk Employees: Policy remains the same. PFF will remain active for those who qualify. See medical staff if you have questions about “high risk” and your health.
All phases: Non-High-Risk Employees: PFF will remain active for those who qualify. If you are called back from furlough and choose NOT to accept a job opening, you lose your PFF benefits and will need to apply for unemployment benefits.
Phase 3: Some of you have goals that you’ve worked out with your manager that will contribute to the success of our business in 2020. In phase 3, those goals will be reviewed and possibly adjusted.
What if I feel sick?
- Please stay home and seek medical attention if you feel sick. If you can’t reach your primary care doctor, please ask your supervisor how to reach out to Dr. Collins, IFB’s on-site physician.
What if I, or a family member, contract the coronavirus?
- While we hope this will never happen, it is a possibility that we need to address. Please stay home and notify your supervisor. You will be asked to stay home for 14 days. After that you must be symptom free to return to work, which is a date executives will need to approve. We will work closely with the health department on next steps. You will receive 4 weeks pay and be able to use PTO/vacation time. Please see the People First Fund video for details.
What if I am asked questions from someone who doesn’t work at IFB Solutions?
- Please assure them that we are doing everything we can to provide great service, quality products and a healthy work environment. Any media inquiries, please send to Nicole Ducouer, director of corporate communications, 304-685-2393, firstname.lastname@example.org
What if I have been diagnosed with the flu?
- If you have been diagnosed with anything other than the coronavirus by a medical professional, we ask you to stay home until you are symptom free.
What if I have guests in town from other states staying in my house?
- In accordance with our travel policy, you will need to stay home for 14 days. Please see travel policies above as our policy has changed to reflect the 3-Phase Back to Work Plan.
What if I have high risk health issues?
- Please consult your doctor first. IFB’s medical staff is also available to answer your questions. See your supervisor if you would like to get in touch with our medical staff. Leadership will work with you as we address any concerns. You can also visit the CDC’s website for more information here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html.
What if there is a case of Coronavirus at an IFB location?
- Should there be a positive case of COVID-19 at an IFB location, communication to employees will be deployed through appropriate channels. The facility will close for at least 72 hours and a deep clean will be conducted. Employees will be paid during that time. Anyone diagnose with COVID-19, or needs to quarantine, will be paid under the People First Fund.
Would IFB shut down if our state issued a temporary closure of non-essential business?
- The U.S. Department of Defense has deemed IFB Solutions essential and critical to the security of our nation, because we manufacture products for our Armed Forces. While some of our product lines temporarily stopped running, operations critical to our federal government continue.
For all other questions, please email StaySafe@ifbsolutions.org.
Helpful Resources for IFB Solutions Employees
The coronavirus health crisis can take a toll on your emotional well-being. IFB Solutions has an Employee Assistance Program, which includes a phone number to call for counseling that operates 24 hours a day. These counselors can help you with personal or work-related issues and all calls are confidential. This line is available to all IFB employees. Please contact your local Human Resources department for the phone number and password.
Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html
CDC Frequently Asked Questions https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html
Johns Hopkins Public Health On Call Podcast https://www.jhsph.edu/podcasts/public-health-on-call/
CDC Info on Stress and Coping https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html