APA Member Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
and Resources Links

As Of 4-6-2020

Things are changing sometimes on a daily basis and your APA will update these FAQ’s as we are made aware of changes so it is important to always refer to this page for the latest FAQ’s.


Question:

Can the University force us to use our accrued vacation, personal and sick time when we are ordered to be home by the Governor’s emergency order and we are not working remotely?

Answer:

No, they cannot FORCE you to use accrued time. However, the options available to members. The use of accrued time is a means of helping members retain their benefits while not at work. Those working remotely automatically retain all benefits. The same is not true if you are not working remotely or using accrued time. Anyone who chooses to take an unpaid leave will lose their benefits, including health benefits, at the end of the month in which they start that leave.


Question:

Does everyone get the 56 hours of sick time?

Answer:

No. Temporary and On-Call employees are not eligible. Part time employees get a prorated number of hours. Members who have enough accrued time to get them to April 2, 2020 are not eligible. The up to 56 hours of sick time is intended to be a bridge for members who has exhausted their bank of accruals or qualifying new hires who have not had enough time to build accruals. This will allow all members to retain their status and benefits up to the April 2 date when the federal relief is expected to become effective.

 


Question:

Why has the campus not invoked the Modified Operations Policy and Procedures?


Question:

Can I use the Teladoc app for my initial doctor check?

Answer:

Yes


Question:

If my situation does not include daycare issues, my job cannot be done as telework, and I have been sent home by a government order, can I apply for any help under the Families First Coronavirus Act?

Answer:

Yes, if you were not laid off prior to April 2, 2020 and you meet one of the 6 qualifications of the Paid Emergency Sick Leave, you can apply for Paid Emergency Sick Leave. The Paid Emergency Sick Leave (PESL) allows up to 80 hours of paid sick days for employees who qualify. The pay rate will be 100% of your normal pay rate capped at $510 per day if the leave is for reasons 1-3.  If the reason for the leave falls under qualifications 4-6, the pay rate is 2/3 of regular pay with a cap of $200/day. The employee will need to submit the proper forms to apply for this leave program. Please refer to the MSU HR website for the forms.


Question:

Do I have to exhaust my accruals before applying for these programs?

Answer:

No.


Question:

How am I deemed essential and doing what I feel is menial work?

Answer:

The departments have been given the discretion to make the decision with regards as to what talents they see as essential to the functions of their departments. This is detailed in the letter from Sharon Butler and Theodore H. Curry to the DDC, HR Reps and supervisors on March 24, 2020. “HR Guidelines regarding Governor’s Executive Order on March 24, 2020.”  The APA has worked with a few members to help clarify specific areas in question and will continue that effort. With that said, please keep in mind that while you may think the work is not critical, you are being given the opportunity to work without having to use accrued time to maintain pay and benefits.


Question:

What if I am ordered to go home and have no work and not enough accrued time to be receiving any form of pay?

Answer:

The guidelines from Sharon Butler and Theodore H. Curry indicate that between now and through April 1, 2020, you can receive an allotment of up to 56 hours toward sick time, if you have exhausted your other accruals. This is intended to help bridge that gap between now and April so that all members retain their benefits.


Question:

Are we required to have the video option active when on Zoom or Teams conference calls?

Answer:

No. It is your choice as to what is visible at your home. Be professional with your choice of backdrops. We suggest turning off the videos. We also suggest looking at the screen to understand if the meeting is being recorded. Always be professional in your meeting behavior.


Question:

If my child’s school or daycare is closed or unavailable due to COVID-19 and I do not have telework, can I apply for Expanded Family Medical Leave under The Families First Coronavirus Response Act?

Answer:

Yes. However, there are some exceptions.

  1. You must have been employed by MSU for at least 30 days.
  2. You must be working or utilizing paid leave at the time you apply for benefits under the Act. You cannot be “laid off” when you apply.
  3. Certain classes of workers are not eligible for benefits under this full pact. Those workers include MSU PD Staff, MSU Health Team Staff, Student Health & Wellness Staff, and Office of University Physician Staff.

If you qualify for the Expanded Family and Medical Leave Act (EFMLA) you are entitled to up to 12 weeks of leave. You will be paid at no less than 2/3 of your normal pay.  However, the first ten days of your leave may be unpaid.  You may be entitled to full pay (capped at $511/day) during those first ten days under the Paid Emergency Sick Leave portion of the Act.  Additionally, you may use accrued time off during those first ten days if you do not qualify for the Paid Emergency Sick Leave. The employee will need to submit the proper forms to apply for this leave program.


Question:

How do I know if I qualify for Paid Emergency Sick Leave under the qualification “ a Government Order to self quarantine”?

Answer:

It is the MEA’s and APA’s position that Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order to “Stay Home, Stay Safe” qualifies as a government order to self-quarantine.  It is not yet clear whether MSU will agree with this interpretation.  Please notify us immediately if you apply for leave under this qualification and it is denied by MSU.

NOTE:  Paid Emergency Sick Leave should be used PRIOR to using any remaining accrued leave.  Please notify us if that is not how the leave is applied.