Orange County takes enhanced COVID-19 protective measures to protect workforce

Goshen. Departments to enact continuity of operations plans to reduce in-office staff, beginning Monday, Dec. 14.

| 02 Dec 2020 | 02:51

    Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus has authorized all county department heads to enact Continuity of Operation Plans and to reduce in-office staff through telework and rotation of in-person staff as the county and the country, continue to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “With the rising number of rising active cases of COVID-19 in our County and across the nation, we all need to take protective actions to ensure the health and safety of our workforce, while continuing to provide essential and necessary services for the public which relies heavily on County Government,” Neuhaus said in a press release Wednesday, Dec. 2, afternoon. “We have now reached a public health threshold that requires the reduction of the number of employees in the workforce to slow the spread of COVID and preserve our County operations.”

    Orange County employs 2,200 people at approximately 100 worksites throughout the county.

    Distinct operational teams

    Neuhaus consulted with Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman and Human Resources Commissioner Steve Gross in making the decision, which will help to preserve the workforce and county operations by creating distinct operational teams. This will help to ensure that if one group gets sick, the other will not be infected and can continue to operate and provide services.

    Effective Monday, Dec. 7, the recommendation is that groups work in shifts out on a weekly or bi-weekly cycle. Employees should also reduce in-person, in-office contact, utilizing phones, email, Zoom and Microsoft Teams more frequently.

    Neuhaus stressed that employees should continue to follow COVID-19 health and safety guidelines by wearing masks, social distancing and disinfecting their work areas and common areas frequently.

    “As difficult at is,” Neuhaus said, “now more than ever we must be vigilant about working to stop the spread of COVID-19, while keeping our workforce and residents as safe and healthy as possible.”

    Essential information
    For information about COVID-19 testing, go to
    The Orange County Health Department COVID-19 hotline at 845-291-2330.