Here’s what you should do if you are forced to work in extreme indoor temperatures:
- Immediately report the issue to REHS and make a facilities work order
- Notify your supervisor that you are reporting a safety violation and object to working under unsafe conditions until the repairs are complete:
“I object to working under extreme temperatures that deviate from the recommendations of OSHA and PEOSH because it can or has already impacted my health and safety and will cause an eminent continued threat to my wellbeing. As an alternative, I intend to leave the workplace and continue working remotely if/until the work environment is safe. Moving forward, working remotely is the safest option until the HVAC is fully operational.”
Reference: OSHA recommends temperature control in the range of 68–76° F and humidity control in the range of 20%-60%. Rutgers, as a public employer, is required to uphold a general duty of maintaining a workplace free from hazards according to PEOSH. Compliance with the OSHA recommendation will fulfill that duty. Violations may be reported to PEOSH at: https://www.nj.gov/health/workplacehealthandsafety/peosh/compform.shtml.
- If you’ve already experienced illness from the extreme heat conditions, notify your supervisor that you are feeling ill and must leave sick for the rest of the day. Request that the absence be precessed though the Occupational Health Department and that you should not be made to use your own sick time.
Message to union members from Christine O’Connell, President
Congratulations to our membership for your part in the overwhelming ratification of the fiscal emergency agreement. Each of you played an important role in this ratification, with 74% of our members voting, and with 98% voting yes to ratify. This is the highest voting turnout in the history of our union. From the elections committee, your executive board, and myself, we thank you.
Today, we celebrate our important step together, as URA and as part of the Coalition of Rutgers Unions who represent 20,000 workers. We fought in solidarity, to make gains for all of us, and have now ratified a historic agreement with Rutgers that encompasses multiple unions and our needs.
What comes next?
We will transmit our ratification results to Rutgers and they will transmit the workshare plan to the Department of Labor for approval. Then, Rutgers will compile the lists of those who are eligible for furloughs. We will review their accuracy. Shortly after, we can start requesting our preference for the day of week for furlough days from your departments.
What not to do
DO NOT apply for unemployment yet. More information will come from Rutgers and your union with details on how to apply for unemployment soon. Click here to check if you were a victim of unemployment in the last year.
If you were a victim of identity theft/unemployment fraud please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are still collecting names of those who were impacted.