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12/22/2021 - January Return

To: Caltech Faculty, Staff, and Postdoctoral Scholars 
From: Julia McCallin, Associate Vice President for Human Resources and Chief Human Resources Officer

As we look forward to a restful winter recess, it is important to address the recent spread of the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 and plans to return to campus in 2022.

Employees should return to campus in January, as they planned to do before the Institute announced its plans to offer the first week of classes via zoom. The Institute will proactively evaluate the situation in January based on surveillance testing results and ambient health conditions to do our best to keep everyone safe.

Any changes to the Institute's plans or requirements for employees will be communicated over the winter recess via email.

For those supervisors who have employees who will not have access to email, please follow your typical communication protocols to ensure they are aware of any changes. If you are working remotely or on a hybrid schedule, please continue with the agreed upon work arrangement.

Please remember that if you are not feeling well or need to care for an ill family member, you should stay home and not report to work. Caltech's sick leave program affords individuals the opportunity to continue to be paid while caring for themselves or an ill family member. 

Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 or have had close contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19 should not report to work and are instructed to follow the protocols outlined on the Caltech Together website. Caltech will continue to offer "COVID Supplemental Sick Leave."

Employees who report a COVID-related illness through the Caltech COVID-19 Reporting Application will work with the Disability and Leave Administration Unit (DLAU) of HR to access the supplemental sick leave benefit. DLAU will work with Student Wellness Services on contacting those employees who have reported an illness through the system. Contact will take place in January when we have returned from the winter recess.

As a reminder, in an effort to continue to protect the health and wellbeing of our community—particularly as we respond to the emergence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant—the Institute will now require all fully vaccinated students and employees to receive a COVID-19 booster shot. Employees—including staff, faculty, postdoctoral scholars, and visitors—on campus and at off-site facilities, apart from JPL, will be asked to begin submitting documentation of their booster in January. More information on the submission deadline and other details will be shared in January.

Best wishes for a restful winter recess.