PEF has negotiated an extension of the temporary emergency agreement with the state regarding telecommuting, which was set to expire on December 31, 2020.
We now have an agreement with the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations (GOER) to extend the program date in section VIII of the Statewide Telecommuting Pilot Program Agreement until the close of business on April 2, 2021.
However, this extension does not necessarily mean that all agencies are choosing to participate or properly utilize telecommuting as a way to keep our members safe during this second wave of the coronavirus. I would urge each local leader to make an official request, either through the Labor-Management or Health & Safety process, that your agency fully utilize the now extended telecommuting option. Our members have proven throughout this pandemic that services to New York can be accomplished via telecommuting. Forcing PEF members back into clustered situations demonstrates the disconnect between the governor’s public statements and state agency managements’ interpretation of those statements. Their actions put the workforce and local communities at risk from this unrelenting aggressive virus and it must stop.