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Working Through COVID-19

OHR Staff

Our employees' safety and well-being is our campus' top priority. We are committed to being available during this time of uncertainty to support you.

Please email your appropriate OHR staff member and they will respond as quickly as possible. In addition, the HR main line (760) 750-4418 and email account ( will continue to be monitored.


Frequently Asked Questions


General HR

  • What do I do if I need to come on to campus?

    As a reminder, access to the campus is restricted to employees who have been designated to assist with critical functions and operations that can only be conducted in-person.  All other employees and visitors must complete an Access to CSUSM Campus Request Form and obtain approval prior to coming to campus.

    All employees needing to work on campus and/or access any campus buildings must:

    • Conduct online symptom screening each day before coming to campus.  Employees must be free of any symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 to be eligible to report to work on campus. 
      • Employees who are not clear to work must notify their manager immediately to determine if there are opportunities for them to work remotely.  If they are not able to telework for some reason, they should also contact Melanie Hobbs ( in the Office of Human Resources (OHR) regarding eligible leaves which may be available. 
    • Practice physical distancing whenever possible
    • Face Coverings. All campus community members must wear face coverings in the following situations while on University property and/or when participating in any University-related activities:
      • Inside of, or in line to enter, any indoor public or common space;
      • Obtaining services from any campus department or office;
      • Waiting for public transportation, private transportation, a ride-sharing vehicle or private car service;
      • Engaging in work, whether on University property or off-site at a University-related activity; specifically when:
        • While in or passing through public or common spaces on campus; such as common workspaces, classrooms, labs, common areas in student housing, hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities;
        • Working in any space where there is an expectation of interaction with a person who is not from their own household or residence, regardless of whether any such person is present at the time;
        • Interacting in-person with another person who is not from their own household or residence;
      • In any space where food is prepared, packaged, or sold;
      • In any room or enclosed area where other people (except for members of the person’s own household or residence) are present;
      • When operating a vehicle on University business when passengers are present;
      • While outdoors in public spaces where consistently maintaining a physical distance of six feet from persons who are not members of the same household or residence is not feasible.
      • Face coverings may be removed for a minimum time-frame for eating or drinking.  Because facial coverings will be off while you are eating, it is recommended you maintain a minimum distance of 10 feet from others if possible while eating.
    • Practice regular and effective hand washing which includes using warm water and soap, scrubbing vigorously for 20 seconds, rinsing well, and drying well with a hand towel or air dryer.
    Employees may supplement (but not replace) hand washing with hand sanitizer that is at least 60% ethyl alcohol. 
  • I am over 65 and/or have a chronic medical condition. Do I need to report to work?

    Beginning March 15, 2020, CSU employees who were age 65 or older and/or who had chronic medical conditions were asked to immediately social distance themselves and remain away from work. Many of these individuals were able to telework but for those who could not, income protection, in the form of paid administrative leave, was provided. The CDC has recently revised its guidance pertaining to individuals at higher risk for COVID-19.  Based on this new guidance from the CDC, employees who are older and/or who have underlying medical conditions are not automatically entitled to paid administrative leave if they are not able to work remotely.  All current CDC guidance is available here.

    Employees who are able to effectively work remotely should be afforded the opportunity to continue.  However, employees who are not able to effectively work remotely and do not have either an approved leave or an approved accommodation through OHR, should be included in department repopulation plans. In addition, if they are in a position which has been designated as “essential,” they may be required to report to work prior to implementation of the repopulation plan.

    Employees who have medical concerns regarding their return to work including, but not limited to, being older and/or an underlying medical condition, should contact Melanie Hobbs ( in the Office of Human Resources (OHR)  regarding eligible leaves and/or other options which may be available to them. Employees with medical concerns are able to request accommodations through the campus’ normal ADA interactive process and can initiate that process by contacting Melanie Hobbs ( 

  • I recently traveled out of state or out of the country. Am I required to self-quarantine?

    Given the everchanging COVID-19 situation, new travel restrictions for individuals returning to California from another state or country may be imposed at any time. However, employees are not currently restricted from personal travel. We strongly encourage departments to identify remote work for employees returning from personal travel, even if they are not symptomatic. However, we are not able to restrict employees from travelling nor are we able to require them to use a paid leave, such as CPAL, upon their return unless there are state, county, federal or CDC travel advisories in place. 

    At this time, employees returning from international travel must stay home for 14 days from the time that they returned from international travel. Employees should keep in mind that state travel restrictions may be more restrictive than CDC travel advisories.

  • Am I covered under Workers Compensation if I am working remotely?

    Employees who are teleworking are covered under Workers’ Compensation so any work-related injuries or illnesses that are reported by telecommuters will follow the same procedures as work-related injuries that are reported by non-telecommuters. All work-related injuries or illnesses must be promptly reported to Workers' Compensation.

    For ergonomic evaluations and any other safety needs please contact Safety, Health, and Sustainability. You may also refer to the SH&S Ergonomics page or seek assistance from SH&S if you are experiencing challenges.

    If equipment is needed due to a medical condition or disability, please contact the Office of Human Resources and follow the Reasonable Accommodation Request Process.

  • How can I submit HR or Payroll forms when I am telecommuting?

    Employees should remove confidential information (e.g. SSN, DOB, etc.) from the document and then email it directly to your HR Analyst or Payroll Technician.
  • What if I would like to request a vacation day?

    Employees must continue to follow their department procedure (and the controlling collective bargaining agreement, if applicable) to request and obtain approval for vacation time.
  • How will this impact the recruitment process?

    HR will continue to monitor recruitments through our normal process. 

    All interviews are encouraged to be conducted via Zoom or Skype until further notice. Please keep in mind there should be consistency with each recruitment (e.g., all candidates are interviewed via Zoom).

  • How will this impact a classification review or in-range progression request?

    There will be no impact to the classification review process nor in-range progression requests.
  • What impact, if any, will this have on my performance evaluation (including due date)?

    The due date for annual performance evaluations for all bargaining unit and confidential employees was extended to June 30, 2020. The review period remains the same (April 1, 2019 through March 31, 2020).

    Performance evaluations for MPP's were also due on June 30, 2020.

    For questions, please contact Melinda Swearingen at


  • Do I need to report my time in PeopleSoft?

    Employees should continue to report their time and attendance in PeopleSoft. Time spent performing work at home will be recorded as if performing official duties on campus.
  • How do I pick up my paycheck?

    To ensure maximum level of safety for all employees, all "live" paychecks for the March pay period will be mailed no later than Friday, March 27 to the home address on file with the university. 

    Please note that pay stubs for employees on Direct Deposit will not be mailed. They will be kept on hand for when all employees return to campus. Digital copies of pay stubs can be accessed through Cal Employee Connect.

  • How can I update my home address?

    We encourage employees who are not enrolled in Direct Deposit to log in to PeopleSoft employee self-service MyCSUSM no later than Monday, March 23 to confirm the home address on file is accurate and make any necessary updates. 

    Upon accessing MyCSUSM, employees can update their address by selecting "My HR Resources" and then "Personal Information."


  • Am I able to change my days or hours of work while telcommuting?

    Changes to work days and hours should be approved in advance by your manager and may require additional documentation (e.g. revised Alternate Work Schedule or Telecommuting Agreement). As part of the discussion about days or hours of work while telecommuting, employees and their managers should also discuss when/how to make contact on teleworking days.
  • What if I am sick and unable to work while telecommuting?

    Employees who are sick and unable to work in their teleworking location should notify their manager and report those absences as they would in a normal office setting.
  • How will work assignments be communicated to me?

    Work assignments will be provided by the appropriate administrator and can be communicated by phone, email, and/or other business systems/technology. Employees should complete all assigned work according to procedures determined by the appropriate administrator. Manager and employees are encouraged to have ongoing discussions regarding work assignments, deadlines, and potential impacts.


  • I am feeling anxious and overwhelmed. What should I do?

    CSUSM is committed to supporting our employees in navigating these challenges. We are deeply grateful to you for the work you are doing to help us continue to serve our students and maintain operations in a time of uncertainty and anxiety

    Our Employee Assistance Program, Empathia, provides well-being and counseling support 24/7 and can be reached at 800-367-7474 or online at (password: cougars).