Stein Industries Coronavirus Information

August 21 Update

 

It has been five months since our first Coronavirus update memo and our transition to a work from home schedule for those able to complete their job functions remotely. We continue to reflect on all those individuals, families and friends that have been directly impacted through illness or loss of loved ones because of the Coronavirus. We acknowledge those families that are struggling with not being able to see their parents or grandparents many of whom are facing this pandemic on their own even while needing medical care and assistance to live normal daily lives. And to the families with school age children, we acknowledge the difficulties of juggling work, school and childcare with both parents working or as a single parent. Our thoughts and hearts go out to all impacted by the virus and we are committed to working with each one of you to the best of our ability, to work through each and every situation, to ensure that you have the support you need to make it through this pandemic.  

It has been roughly 160 days since we moved to our new norm of limited office schedules, socially distanced work conditions, increased cleaning and sanitizing protocols, masks and increase use of zoom meetings and virtual communications. We recognize the sacrifice of our essential workers – the employees in our warehouses and offices who come in to make sure our customers are served. You are OUR heroes. You, along with all the medical workers, police officers, pharmacists, grocery, and convenience store workers allow us to have some semblance of normalcy in our daily lives. Your continuing efforts are acknowledged and appreciated by all of us – thank you!

Today’s update will cover our “work from home” status, “returning to the office” reminders, “PTO”, “business travel” and some “real life COVID-19 experiences”. We want to again thank the employees of Stein Industries for taking this virus seriously, for continuing social distancing practices both at home and in our facilities and for following the protocols that allow us to operate a safe and secure environment for all employees:

Updates:

 

  • Work From Home - Our plan is to remain in our current optional “work from home” status through at least Friday, January 1st, 2021, when we will have an update on any plans or requirements for employees return to the office. Under our current work from home status, please continue to work with your President or manager to determine your specific scheduling and work plan. While we continue to support “work from home”, there are times that you may need to return to the office. In these cases, please adhere to the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that has been issued and found at the link below. 

 

The Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan:   J:\COVID-19 Employee Resources

  • PTO – We continue to encourage employees to utilize PTO. In the work from home environment, it is easy to forget to take “official” time off away from work. It is healthy and recommended. Please work with your manager and determine plans to utilize your annual PTO. You have earned it and it is important that everyone take time away from work to refresh and come back energized and ready to go.

 

  • Business Travel – Business travel is allowed as needed and with your President’s approval. We recommend caution and strongly suggest avoiding travel to areas of high COVID-19 incidence. If you travel on a plane, a 14-day quarantine is required, (or work from home if able) where you are not allowed to come to the office. Please work with your President if you feel business travel is essential and necessary for your division.

  • Stein Employees with Young School Children at Home:  –  With the ongoing COVID-19 situation, we realize that our employees with school age children will be challenged to be more involved in their child’s day to day schooling needs than has been required in the past. This can put a strain on an employee’s ability to be focused and available during a standard workday. As you navigate this upcoming school year, please reach out to your manager and HR to discuss any concerns or requests you may have. We want to partner with you to help you be successful and maintain a healthy balance through this process.

  • Stein Industries - Real Life COVID-19 Experiences:  

 

1. Employee was exposed to a co-worker who tested positive for COVID-19. What did they do?

 

The employee decided to get tested and signed up online through HealthPartners/Park Nicolet for a COVID-19 test and requested the Wayzata 101 & 55 drive through location. When they arrived, it was not crowded, maybe a few cars in front of them but it moved quick. The employee confirmed he had been exposed to a positive case and had a headache and was in the high-risk age group. Employee was asked a few more questions and then were given the test – very simple, nostril swabs. Only went up about ¾ of an inch and was performed on both nostrils – the testing folks were terrific, very friendly and knowledgeable and the test was not bad at all – 5 seconds in each nostril, very minor, a slightly uncomfortable sensation for 10 seconds. Results would come in 48-72 hours – if a phone call from HealthPartners, it is positive, if not then the employee would need to call them to confirm a negative. The employee did not get any call so after 48 hours they called the number provided and it was confirmed their results were negative.  

2.  Employee was tested for COVID-19 as part of a pre-op process and although asymptomatic, were told that they
     tested positive. What did they do?

The employee contacted HR and reviewed who they had been in contact with at work over the last seven days. HR contacted impacted employees who were advised to self-quarantine for 14 days from the last contact with this employee. The employee was required to quarantine for 14 days as well. The MN Department of Health was notified by the employee’s doctor’s office and, in addition to contacting HR and any known contacts the employee had, sent a letter indicating the situation and notifying the company of the steps that were being taken as part of the contact tracing process. The employee (as well as the people they were in contact with) did not develop any of the physical symptoms and all were able to return to work at the completion of the 14-day quarantine period.

3.  Employee was notified that their grandchild was being tested for COVID-19 due to symptoms and that the
     employee has been in prolonged contact with the child within the last 7 days. What did they do?

Out of an abundance of caution, the employee self-quarantined (worked from home) pending the results of the granddaughter’s test. The child’s test results came back negative and the employee was able to return to the workplace.

 

If you would like to share an anonymous COVID-19 experience, please forward to:  covid@stein-industries.com 

 

  • Work from Home – Frequently Asked Questions: (REMINDERS)

  1. What happens if my personal Wi-Fi/internet service goes out during the workday? Should I contact Stein IT or my provider to resolve?

Answer: Employees who are working remote are responsible to making sure they have suitable access to a secured Wi-Fi that will allow them to complete their job expectations away from the company worksite. If you are working from home and your Wi-Fi fails, you can either:

a.  Contact your provider to get resolved ASAP

b.  Relocate to the office (with advance notification to your supervisor)

c.  Complete work that does not require internet until you resolve with your provider.

 

2.  What are the hours that Stein IT will be available to provide support for issues?

 

Answer: For issues requiring immediate attention, Stein IT will be available to provide support Monday through Friday between the hours of 7 a.m. and 5 pm CST. For non-emergency, employees must submit an IT Service Ticket. Response time will be 24 hours. For business-critical support after hours, call Steve Cromer at 612-803-7735.

3.  What equipment will the company provide for employees to be able to work remote?

Answer: Laptops are the only equipment being provided to employees whose jobs can be accomplished effectively while working remote. Our offices are currently open, and all other company-owned equipment is available for use in the office, if needed (printing/ scanning/etc.).

4.  Will the company provide any reimbursement for personal cell phone and/or internet usage when I am working
     remote?

 

Answer: Unless you were on a cell phone/internet reimbursement plan prior to COVID-19, the company will not be reimbursing employees working remote for any personal internet or cell phone expenses.  

5.  What happens if my computer requires service/repair and needs to get to IT?

Answer: For repairs and service issues that require hands on support from Stein IT, employees need to make an appointment with IT to hand-off the equipment at 7147 Northland Drive. IT has a finite number of laptops available for loan. The employee will be provided with a “loaner” laptop to use while repairs/service is being conducted.

REMINDER: Company laptops are to be used for work related business only. Employees should not allow family members to use their work laptops and should not store personal information/data/documents on these laptops.

Self-Quarantining: Current policy and protocol related to self-quarantining

1.  What circumstances require self-quarantining/home isolation?

  • If the employee is exhibiting the following symptoms related to COVID-19:

o   Cough

o   Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

o   Fever of 100.4 or higher

  • If you have come into person-to-person contact with someone who is presumed to have or has tested positive for COVID-19 symptoms within the last 7 days.

NOTE:  If a primary resident from your household is notified that they have had person-to-person contact with someone who has tested positive, you are not required to self-quarantine unless the family member is exhibiting symptoms related to COVID-19 as stated above and/or has tested positive for COVID-19.

2.  How long am I required to Self-Quarantine?

 

Employees are required to remain off Stein property for 14 days if COVID-19 symptoms are present, if they have been directly exposed to COVID-19 through confirmed person to person contact, or if a test shows positive results.

3.  Will I be paid if I am required to self-quarantine?

Emergency paid sick leave may be available for a Stein Industries, Inc. employee who is unable to work or work remotely as a result of being required to self-quarantine due to testing positive for COVID-19 or being directly exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. This includes:

  • Full-time employees: 80 hours at their regular rate of pay, subject to caps and reasons noted below*.

  • Part-time employees: the number of hours that the employee works, on average, over a two-week period, subject to caps and reasons noted below*.

*Payments are capped at $511 a day ($5,110 in total) for time off due to employee illness or quarantine. *Employees responsible and caring for an individual affected by COVID-19 and those whose children's schools have closed, may receive up to two-thirds of pay, with this benefit limited to $200/day ($2,000 in total).

4.  When can I return to work?

Employees with COVID-19, presumed or tested, or who have been directly exposed to others with COVID-19 and who have been under home isolation/quarantine can return to work under the following conditions, consistent with WHO/CDC guidelines:

  • If not tested, but presumed to have COVID-19:

o No fever for 72 hours, without use of medicine to reduce fevers, AND

o Other symptoms have improved, AND

o At least seven days have passed since symptoms first appeared or, you
have received medical clearance.

  • If tested and determined to have COVID-19:

o You no longer have a fever (without the use of fever reducing medicines), AND

o Other symptoms have improved, AND

o You obtained and present medical clearance to return to work

5.  Is the company required to share my positive results or family member’s positive results with my co-workers?

If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, the Company will conduct an investigation to determine co-workers who may have had close contact with the confirmed-positive employee in the prior 14 days and may direct those individuals who have had close contact with the confirmed-positive employee to self-quarantine for 14 days from the last date of close contact with that employee.

Except for circumstances in which the Company is legally required to report workplace occurrences of communicable disease, the confidentiality of all medical conditions will be maintained in accordance with applicable law and to the extent practical under the circumstances. When required, the number of persons who will be informed that an unnamed employee has tested positive will be kept to the minimum needed to comply with reporting requirements and to limit the potential for transmission to others.

  • Direct Email:

    • The direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com 

 

Thank you again to all Stein Industries employees for your continuing effort and commitment to keeping this organization running smoothly. Your commitment to supporting your fellow workers and serving our customers is demonstrated every day and is humbling. Our goal remains in place – to service our customers and maintain our relationships as we have all along – pre- COVID-19 or post- COVID-19 – we will continue to be there for our customers.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

July 2 Update

It is hard to imagine how the world has changed since our first update memo was issued on March 19th, 2020. No one could have predicted the impact that COVID-19 would have on our daily lives. We also want to reflect on all those individuals and families that have already been impacted through illness or loss of loved ones because of the Coronavirus. Our thoughts and hearts go out to all that have felt pain, worry and loss associated with this terrible disease. 

It has been 108 days since we moved to a “work from home” schedule for those able. We also want to acknowledge our essential workers in our offices and warehouses that have continued to persevere and come to work every day to keep our organization running smoothly and fulfill customer orders. A huge thank you to the team members that have consistently come to our facilities – all in the name of serving our customers. Your efforts are acknowledged and appreciated by all of us – thank you!

Today’s update will cover several topics related to work during the time of COVID-19. We will answer questions that have been asked and communicate learnings from the past 100 days including our plans regarding “work from home”, “returning to the office” and business travel. We want to again thank the employees of Stein Industries for handling the work-life transitions with professionalism that reflects positively to our teammates, our suppliers, our community, and our customers:

Updates:

 

  • Work From Home - Our plan is to remain in our current optional “work from home” status through at least Wednesday, September 30, 2020, when we will have an update on any plans or requirements for employees return to the office. Under the current work from home status, please continue to work with your President or manager to determine your specific scheduling and work plan. While we support “work from home”, there are times that you may desire or have a need to return to the office. In these cases, please adhere to the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that has been issued and found at the link below. Your safety as well as that of your fellow workers remains our priority for those entering and using the offices and our facilities. Please apply and respect these guidelines to ensure we maintain a safe environment for all employees.

 

The Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan can be found at:  at  J:\COVID-19 Employee Resources  

  • Stein Industries Events – In consideration for social distancing requirements and guidelines that minimize large group gatherings, we have suspended all social events for the company. This includes the July 4th picnic as well as other company gatherings such as service awards for years of service. We will continue to issue the awards in private communication between employee and manager. Regarding larger social events for the company, we all look forward to the next time we are safely able to hold these events and gather in person.

  • PTO – We encourage employees to utilize PTO. In a work from home environment, it is easy to forget to take “official” time off away from work. It is healthy and recommended. Please work with your manager and determine plans to utilize your PTO. You have earned it and it is important that everyone take time away from work to refresh and come back energized and ready to go.

 

  • Business Travel – As of July 1, 2020 – and with your President’s approval – business travel is allowed. As usual, we recommend caution and strongly suggest avoiding travel to areas of high COVID-19 incidence. If you travel on a plane, a 14-day quarantine is required, i.e. work from home period, where you are not allowed to come to the office. Please work with your President if you feel business travel is essential and necessary for your division at this time.

 

  • Work from Home – Frequently Asked Questions:

 

  1. What happens if my personal Wi-Fi/internet service goes out during the workday? Should I contact Stein IT or my provider to resolve?

Answer: Employees who are working remote are responsible to making sure they have suitable access to a secured Wi-Fi that will allow them to complete their job expectations away from the company worksite. If you are working from home and your Wi-Fi fails, you can either:

a.  Contact your provider to get resolved ASAP

b.  Relocate to the office (with advance notification to your supervisor)

c.  Complete work that does not require internet until you resolve with your provider.

2.  What are the hours that Stein IT will be available to provide support for issues?

Answer: For issues requiring immediate attention, Stein IT will be available to provide support Monday through Friday between the hours of 7 a.m. and 5 pm CST. For non-emergency, employees must submit an IT Service Ticket. Response time will be 24 hours.

3.  What equipment will the company provide for employees to be able to work remote?

Answer: Laptops are the only equipment being provided to employees whose jobs can be accomplished effectively while working remote. Our offices are currently open, and all other company-owned equipment is available for use in the office, if needed (printing/scanning/etc.).

 

4.  Will the company provide any reimbursement for personal cell phone and/or internet usage when I am working
     remote?

Answer: Unless you were on a cell phone/internet reimbursement plan prior to COVID-19, the company will not be reimbursing employees working remote for any personal internet or cell phone expenses.

5.  What happens if my computer requires service/repair and needs to get IT?

Answer: For repairs and service issues that require hands-on support from Stein IT, employees need to make an appointment with IT to hand-off the equipment at 7147 Northland Drive. IT has a finite number of laptops available for loan. The employee will be provided a “loaner” laptop to use while repairs/service is being conducted.

 

REMINDER:  Company laptops are to be used for work related business only. Employees should not allow family members to use their work laptops and should not store personal information/data/documents on these laptops.

Self-Quarantining: Current policy and protocol related to self-quarantining:

 

  1. What circumstances require self-quarantining/home isolation?

  • If the employee is exhibiting the following symptoms related to COVID-19:

    • Cough

    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

    • Fever of 100.4 or higher

  • If you have come into person-to-person contact with someone who is presumed to have or has tested positive for COVID-19 symptoms within the last 7 days.

NOTE: If a primary resident from your household is notified that they have had person-to-person contact with someone who has tested positive, you are not required to self-quarantine unless the family member is exhibiting symptoms related to COVID-19 as stated above and/or has tested positive for COVID-19.

2.  How long am I required to Self-Quarantine?

Employees are required to remain off Stein property for 14 days if COVID-19 symptoms are present, if they have been directly exposed to COVID-19 through confirmed person to person contact, or if a test shows positive results.

3.  Will I be paid if I am required to self-quarantine?

Emergency paid sick leave may be available for a Stein Industries, Inc. employee who is unable to work or work remotely as a result of being required to self-quarantine due to testing positive for COVID-19 or being directly exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. This includes:

• Full-time employees: 80 hours at their regular rate of pay, subject to caps and reasons noted below*.

• Part-time employees: the number of hours that the employee works, on average, over a two-week period, subject to caps and reasons noted below*.

*Payments are capped at $511 a day ($5,110 in total) for time off due to employee illness or quarantine.

*Employees responsible and caring for an individual affected by COVID-19 and those whose children's schools have closed, may receive up to two-thirds of pay, with this benefit limited to $200/day ($2,000 in total).

4.  When can I return to work?

Employees with COVID-19, presumed or tested, or who have been directly exposed to others with COVID-19 and who have been under home isolation/quarantine can return to work under the following conditions, consistent with WHO/CDC guidelines:

  • If not tested, but presumed to have COVID-19:

o No fever for 72 hours, without use of medicine to reduce fevers, AND

o Other symptoms have improved, AND

o At least seven days have passed since symptoms first appeared or, you have
   received medical clearance.

• If tested and determined to have COVID-19:

o You no longer have a fever (without the use of fever reducing medicines), AND

o Other symptoms have improved, AND

o You obtained and present medical clearance to return to work

 

5.  Is the company required to share my positive results or family member’s positive results with my co-workers?

 

If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, the Company will conduct an investigation to determine co-workers who may have had close contact with the confirmed-positive employee in the prior 14 days and may direct those individuals who have had close contact with the confirmed-positive employee to self-quarantine for 14 days from the last date of close contact with that employee.

 

Except for circumstances in which the Company is legally required to report workplace occurrences of communicable disease, the confidentiality of all medical conditions will be maintained in accordance with applicable law and to the extent practical under the circumstances. When required, the number of persons who will be informed that an unnamed employee has tested positive will be kept to the minimum needed to comply with reporting requirements and to limit the potential for transmission to others.

 

 

  • Direct Email:

    • The direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com 

 

We wish all employees and families of Stein Industries a safe and healthy Fourth of July weekend. The continuing effort and commitment demonstrated day in and day out by you – our employees is humbling. Thank you for your commitment to servicing the customers of Stein Industries. Our goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships as we have all along – pre-COVID-19 or post-COVID-19 – we will continue to be there for our customers.

 

Have a great holiday weekend!

May 13 Update

 

Stein Industries is now in day sixty of our Coronavirus work plan. We do not think anyone could have guessed how significant our lives have changed over these sixty days. As an organization, we have met the challenges and have continued to operate our businesses and serve our customers. On a personal level, we have all been impacted and continue to manage through this extraordinary time. We all understand now how important those little interactions within the office meant to us and we can appreciate things so much more now that our world has changed. As we work on Phase II, the reopening of the office, we need to consider all aspects of how employees interact and use the office environment. We need to apply what we have learned regarding social distancing, cleaning, disinfecting and all the steps required by the State of Minnesota to insure we provide a safe and secure facility for our teams. 

 

Our update today will reiterate the COVID-19 Worksite Plan and highlight the Company and Employee Responsibilities surrounding returning to the office. A full Preparation Plan will be published and distributed through KnowBe4 in the coming days.

 

COVID-19 Worksite Plan

Company and Employee Responsibilities

 

Stein Industries, Inc. takes the health and safety of our employees very seriously. As most of you are aware, the Governor has indicated that stay at home orders will end as of May 18th and as a result, we are looking at what our office and warehouse operations will look like over the next weeks and months. We have started to discuss ways for us to bring employees back into the workplace. With the understanding that COVID-19 remains an active threat, we have developed the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan to provide the guidance on how we are enhancing our current practices to ensure our employee’s safety and wellbeing at work. Beginning June 1, 2020, a limited number of staff will be allowed to re-enter our buildings for work, whether it is every day or just some days each week. This will require advance approval by your supervisor so we can prepare for who is planning to work in the building and who may need IT or other support. Over the next few weeks, you will be scheduled to participate in online training that will share the details of the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan and answer any questions you may have.

 

In the meantime, the remainder of this document will provide a brief overview of some of the changes we will be enacting as part of this initiative.

 

1.      Know the Symptoms of COVID-19

a.  Coughing, fever, shortness of breath, and difficulty breathing.

b.  DO NOT COME IN TO WORK if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. Call your supervisor and healthcare
     provider immediately.

c.  DO NOT COME IN TO WORK if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for or is
     exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. Call your supervisor and healthcare provider immediately.

 

2.       Employer Responsibilities

a.  Provide and enforce appropriate cleaning, sanitation, and social distancing protocols.

b.  Educate employees on appropriate cleaning, sanitation, and social distancing protocols.

c.  Limit access to the workspaces to only those necessary/working in that office or warehouse space.

  i.  Until further notice, lunchroom/communal eating areas will not be available for use (i.e. microwave, 
     coffee makers, refrigerators, etc.). Employees will need to bring their food/meals in coolers or insulated
     bags if the items need to be kept cold.

 ii. Food delivery will not be accepted in the building.

iii. Outdoor picnic tables and seating will be unavailable until further notice.

d.  Employees who can adequately perform the essential functions of their position remotely (as determined by their
     manager), may continue to work a portion of their weekly schedule remote to help support social distancing
     protocols.

e.  When needed onsite, employees will be scheduled to accommodate social distancing requirements.

f.   Visitors in the building will be limited to contractors and vendors that require physical access to provide essential
     service. Visitors will be pre-screened to ensure they are not exhibiting symptoms and will be asked to leave if they
     are showing symptoms.

g. The Company will provide hand sanitizer stations and cleaning supplies throughout the building to properly clean
     and disinfect workstations in between use and at the end of the day.

h.  Employees will be provided with any required protective gear including face masks and gloves.

 

3.      Employee Responsibilities

a.  Read and understand the COVID-19 Preparedness Plan and follow it.

b.  Practice good personal hygiene:

 i.  Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or, when not available, use alcohol-based hand
     rub with at least 60% alcohol.

ii.  Masks will be worn while walking or working in a shared space (including upon entering the building and
     walking to their office or enclosed cube, walking in the warehouse, during a meeting or interaction with
     another employee, using bathrooms, etc.) while in the building. Employees will ensure masks are sanitized
     each night and brought back to work freshly laundered.

iii.  Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.

iv.  Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

v.   Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

vi.  DO NOT COME TO WORK if you are exhibiting symptoms related to COVID -19 (fever, cough, or shortness
     of breath). Notify your supervisor immediately and stay home/seek out medical care.

vii. Avoid shaking hands.

 

4.      Cleaning/Disinfecting Work Area and Equipment

a.  The Company contracted cleaning service will clean and disinfect public/shared spaces and surfaces at the end
     of each day. These include:

 i.  Conference Rooms

ii.   Bathrooms

iii.  Communal spaces

iv.  Door handles

b.  Employees should regularly clean their assigned workspaces with Company supplied cleaning supplies.
     Disinfecting wipes or cleaner will be located near the copiers and in conference rooms. Employees must
     clean/disinfect those areas during the day after each use.

c.  Employees should avoid sharing equipment or work items with co-workers. If you do, disinfect before and after
     each use.

d.  Trash will continue to be collected daily by the cleaning service at the end of each day.

 

5.      Personal Protective Equipment and Alternative Work Practice Controls

a.  The Company will provide employees with masks that must be worn in the building as outlined in
     paragraph 3(b)(ii).

b.  Disposable gloves will be provided for use when handling packages, working with other people, or conducting
     cleaning/disinfecting protocols.

c.  Employees will practice recommended social distancing (6 feet apart).

 

 

Additional Information – Workstations:

Please be aware that Stein Industries will not be able to support workstations both at home and in the office. Please plan to migrate your work equipment as you head back to the office. Your laptop should port easily and safely, and that is recommended. We also recommend that you leave your monitor at the primary setup where you do the most work. Then take the laptop back and forth to the other location during this transitional time.

 

We thank all employees for their cooperation and understanding during these times. As we move forward, we encourage employees to contact Julie Engen, Director of HR at jengen@stein-industries.com  with any concerns or questions or through the e-mail site set up specially for concerns related to the COVID-19 virus  covid@stein-industries.com.

COVID-19 Worksite Plan

Company and Employee Responsibilities

 

 

Stein Industries, Inc. takes the health and safety of our employees very seriously. As most of you are aware, the Governor has indicated that stay at home orders will end as of May 18th  and as a result, we are looking at what our office and warehouse operations will look like over the next weeks and months.

We have started to discuss ways for us to bring employees back into the workplace. With the understanding that COVID-19 remains an active threat, we have developed the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan to provide the guidance on how we are enhancing our current practices to ensure our employee’s safety and wellbeing at work.

Beginning June 1, 2020, a limited number of staff will be allowed to re-enter our buildings for work, whether it is every day or just some days each week. This will require advance approval by your supervisor so we can prepare for who is planning to work in the building and who may need IT or other support. Over the next few weeks, you will be scheduled to participate in online training that will share the details of the Stein Industries COVID-19 Preparedness Plan and answer any questions you may have.

In the meantime, the remainder of this document will provide a brief overview of some of the changes we will be enacting as part of this initiative.

1. Know the Symptoms of COVID-19

​a. Coughing, fever, shortness of breath, and difficulty breathing.

b. DO NOT COME IN TO WORK if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. Call your supervisor and healthcare

    provider immediately. 

c. DO NOT COME IN TO WORK if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for or is

    exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. Call your supervisor and healthcare provider immediately.

 

2. Employer Responsibilities

a. Provide and enforce appropriate cleaning, sanitation, and social distancing protocols.

b. Educate employees on appropriate cleaning, sanitation, and social distancing protocols.

c. Limit access to the workspaces to only those necessary/working in that office or warehouse space.i. 

  i. Until further notice, lunchroom/communal eating areas will not be available for use (i.e. microwave, coffee

     makers, refrigerators, etc.). Employees will need to bring their food/meals in coolers or insulated bags if the

     items need to be kept cold.

 ii. Food delivery will not be accepted in the building.

iii. Outdoor picnic tables and seating will be unavailable until further notice.

d. Employees who can adequately perform the essential functions of their position remotely (as determined by their

    manager), may continue to work a portion of their weekly schedule remote to help support social distancing

    protocols. 

e. When needed onsite, employees will be scheduled to accommodate social distancing requirements.

f.  Visitors in the building will be limited to contractors and vendors that require physical access to provide essential
    service. Visitors will be pre-screened to ensure they are not exhibiting symptoms and will be asked to leave if they

    are showing symptoms.

g. The company will provide hand sanitizer stations and cleaning supplies throughout the building to properly clean

    and disinfect workstations in between use and at the end of the day.

h. Employees will be provided with any required protective gear including face masks and gloves.

 

3. Employee Responsibilities

a. Read and understand the COVID-19 Preparedness Plan and follow it.

b. Practice good personal hygiene:

  i. Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or, when not available, use alcohol-based hand rub

    with at least 60% alcohol.

 ii. Masks will be worn while walking or working in a shared space (including upon entering the building and
     walking to their office or enclosed cube, walking in the warehouse, during a meeting or interaction with
     another employee, using bathrooms, etc.) while in the building. Employees will ensure masks are sanitized
     each night and brought back to work freshly laundered.

 iii. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.

 iv. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

  v. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

 vi. DO NOT COME TO WORK if you are exhibiting symptoms related to COVID -19 (fever, cough, or shortness
      of breath). Notify your supervisor immediately and stay home/seek out medical care.

 vii. Avoid shaking hands.

 

4. Cleaning/Disinfecting Work Area and Equipment

a. The Company contracted cleaning service will clean and disinfect public/shared spaces and surfaces at the end
    of each day. These include:

  i. Conference Rooms

 ii. Bathrooms

iii. Communal spaces

iv.  Door handles

b. Employees should regularly clean their assigned workspaces with company supplied cleaning supplies.
    Disinfecting wipes or cleaner will be located near the copiers and in conference rooms. Employees must
    clean/disinfect those areas during the day after each use.

c. Employees should avoid sharing equipment or work items with co-workers. If you do, disinfect before and after
    each use.

d. Trash will continue to be collected daily by the cleaning service at the end of each day.

 

5. Personal Protective Equipment and Alternative Work Practice Controls

a. The Company will provide employees with masks that must be worn in the building as outlined in paragraph
    3(b)(ii).

b. Disposable gloves will be provided for use when handling packages, working with other people, or conducting
    cleaning/disinfecting protocols.

c. Employees will practice recommended social distancing (6 feet apart).

 

We thank all employees for their cooperation and understanding during these times. As we move forward, we encourage employees to contact Julie Engen, Director of HR at jengen@stein-industries.com  with any concerns or questions or through the e-mail site set up specially for concerns related to the COVID-19 virus  covid@stein-industries.com.

 

May 1 Update

Stein Industries is now in day forty-seven of our Coronavirus work plan and as an organization, we have stepped up and met the challenges that have come our way. We have continued to operate our businesses and serve our customers. Initially it was all about connecting and having access to our email, our ERP system and the data on the networks. Since then we have continued to add new tools required for remote working such as ZOOM – a video conference calling application - that allow us to have face to face interaction and share information as a group through its screen sharing feature. As we continue to adapt to this new way of working we get better at incorporating these new protocols into our everyday activities including virtual weekly L-10’s, business updates, budget and forecast reviews, new product discussions, marketing and sales calls, and employee reviews.

As we turn the calendar and head into May, we should all appreciate what this organization has accomplished over the past forty-seven days – a complete reinvention of how we connect, communicate and execute our business to serve our customers. Even so, we cannot rest solely on what we have accomplished to date. We need to continue to drive our business and take it to another level. We will continue to review our annual plans and objectives, work on advancing and completing our strategic initiatives and rocks and continue moving the business ahead the same way we imagined prior to the virus. 

 

It remains a challenging time but also an exciting time – full of promise and opportunity. Let us continue to focus on where each of these businesses are headed and to appreciate that we are in a position to move forward, to continue executing the plan – to Invest, Change and Grow our businesses for the future. 

 

Updates & Information:

 

  • Returning to The Office:

 

We are finalizing plans and policies that will allow us to have employees return to the office. We are working on plans to ensure that all our facilities are safe, and employees can return to the office with minimal risk associated with the Covid19 virus. Considering that Governor Walz has now pushed out the stay-at-home order at least another two weeks, we are working towards a June 1st opening of our offices. Even at that time we do not see a full 100% return to the office. The recommendations from Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is for “employees who can perform duties remotely – continue to do so”. We expect that division Presidents and corporate managers will determine a plan of action for each division and the corporate team. It will likely include a rotation of staff and/or hours, specific hygiene and sanitation guidelines, required use of masks, required training as well as state required health monitoring for each employee in the building.   

 

More information and Reminders:

 

  • Masks:

    • The CDC has now recommended the use of cloth mask coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. This is particularly important as asymptomatic individuals can pass the virus. Let us know if you need more masks to use for yourself or your family.

 

  • Illness Tracking Reminder:

    • We are asking that you continue to communicate any illness to your manager so we can track illness and time outside the office. This information is important and relevant to HR  as the health of our employees is critical information relevant to State programs and the Emergency Leave Act.

 

  • Watch for Symptoms:

    • The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of smell, loss of taste, headaches and fatigue. Watch for these symptoms each day.

    • If you are exhibiting symptoms, please contact one of the testing providers in your area.  The State of MN has provided a list of testing locations on their website at:  https://mn.gov/covid19/for-minnesotans/if-sick/testing-locations/

 

  • Emergencies:

    • Dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion, an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

 

  • Requirement to Disclose:

    • Stein Industries requires that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19.

    • If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis, inform HR immediately at:  jengen@stein-industires.com

 

 

  • Direct Email:

    • The direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com 

The continuing effort and commitment from Stein Industries employees is demonstrated every day. Thank you for your commitment to servicing customers. Our goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise, and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual!

April 24 Update

 

As discussed in the April 23rd Coronavirus update, we are currently working on plans and policies that will allow us to have employees return to the office. We are working on plans to ensure that all our facilities are safe, and employees can return to the office with minimal risk associated with the COVID-19 virus. Considering the announcement below from Governor Walz on Thursday April 23, we want to clarify for everyone at Stein Industries our position and timing on allowing employees to return to working in the office:

 

Governor Walz announced Thursday that up to 100,000 Minnesotans may be able to return to work on Monday, April 27, if employers take several steps to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus. The governor says the plan was developed in partnership with hundreds of businesses, labor and worker organizations, and public health experts.

 

Our plan is to remain in our current “work from home” status through at least Friday, May 8th, when we will make the final decision on having employees return to the office. Even at that time we do not see a full 100% return to the office. The recommendations from Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is for “employees who can perform duties remotely – continue to do so”. With that said, we know many of you want to return and we will be giving broad authority to the division Presidents and corporate managers to determine a plan of action for each division as well as the corporate team. It will likely include a rotation of staff and/or hours that will allow a return to the office but also provide the opportunity for continued and effective social distancing that is required to maintain a safe environment for employees.

 

Over the next two weeks the task force will be preparing and finalizing a Stein Industries Return to Work Policy, a plan of implementation and will finalize the timing. The policy and implementation plan will at a minimum, address the following areas: 

 

  • Required use of masks

  • Facility cleaning plan

  • Availability of hand sanitizer

  • Social distancing within facilities

  • Visitors in our facilities

  • No travel policy

  • Employee health monitoring

  • Surface cleaning plans

  • Use of lunchrooms

  • Use of microwaves and vending machines

  • Limited movement within the facilities

  • Education & training

  • Employee responsibilities

  • Computer transitions – no duplicate set ups

Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Suggested Best Practices

(Following is the link if you would like to print a copy of the Suggested Best Practices: https://www.mnchamber.com/blog/covid-19-prevention-best-practices.)

Thank you in advance for your support of the final Return to Work Policy. It is all of us working together that will allow us to open our facilities again while also providing a safe environment for our employees to work. We look forward to sharing the policy and final implementation plan with you in the coming weeks.

April 23 Update

Stein Industries is now in day thirty-nine of our Coronavirus work plan including work from home and modified warehouse schedules. As an organization, we have continued to successfully operate our businesses, maintain our internal and external communications and service our customers. Each division has, in their own way, identified new opportunities to solve problems that the virus has caused for our customers. This is testament to our long history of listening to customers, staying close to the markets and industries we serve and being able to convert what we hear and observe into solutions for our customers. Consistently bringing solutions to the marketplace is integral to our success, core values and ultimate passion of – Building Relationships That Stand the Test of Time. It is impressive and reflects so positively on this organization that when pressed into such an extraordinary time we revert to what ultimately got us here – listening and building solutions for our customers. This is something to be proud of as we continue to navigate this unprecedented time.

Today’s update will provide information related to the financial realities of the Coronavirus and how we as a management team are navigating the many challenges. Additionally, we are sharing initial thoughts on what it will look like after the shelter in place executive order is lifted and we transition back to working in the office.

Updates & Information:

 

  • Financial Realities:

It goes without saying that the Coronavirus is having a massive financial impact across a broad swath of industries. The required shelter in place executive orders in cities across the country have directly impacted all retail, restaurants, movie theaters, health clubs, sporting events, concerts, theme parks and countless others. Then, there are other companies indirectly related, like ours, with divisions that service these industries. The financial impact is immeasurable. While federal, state and local governments are working feverishly to provide relief and support to businesses, there are just too many urgent needs. To this end companies all over the country are making difficult decisions to layoff and furlough employees, reduce salaries, reduce hours, eliminate 401K matches, eliminate 2020 incentive plans, delay annual increases, and lower expenses in any way possible.

Here at Stein Industries, we are not immune to the financial impact of the Coronavirus and have already been impacted significantly. Our approach has been to evaluate each division on an individual basis and authorize leadership to make changes required for that particular division. These changes reflect both the short-term impact, i.e. furloughs where we expect to bring employees back in the near term as well as layoffs, that are longer-term, reflecting structural changes that Coronavirus is having on our industries. Our goal, consistent with our purpose and values has been to balance the financial realities of the businesses while minimizing the impact the changes will have on our employees.

The Stein Industries management team has also evaluated the financial impact on Stein Industries in total at the end of Q1’ 2020. We also took steps to forecast, to the best of our ability, the remaining year to determine if we need to take immediate action to address the financial realities of the business. We would like to report that, at this time, we are not going to mandate changes in salary or benefits that would impact Stein Industries globally. While we have been impacted financially, we remain stable and strong. The benefits of our conservative financial approach is now benefiting us significantly. If current business patterns continue and our forecasts do not change dramatically, we should be able to weather the storm without global changes to the full Stein Industries work force. It is critical, however, that everyone understand, we do not fully know what tomorrow will bring or what turn our businesses and markets will take. As markets adjust to the new reality of the Coronavirus, we will need to continue to evaluate our situation. We also want to reiterate that changes may still be implemented on a division by division basis based on the amount of order and market activity. We will continue to balance the financial realities of each business with the impact on our employees and we will do our best to manage and lead through this crisis. As we promised in an earlier update, we will continue to be straight forward, honest, and direct in our communications and do our best to communicate as we see changes impacting Stein Industries and the divisions.

  • Returning to The Office:

As we are seeing and reading, states are beginning to work toward the release of the shelter in place policies under which we are currently operating in Minnesota. Stein Industries leadership is beginning the process to determine what this will look like for us as an organization when these restrictions are relaxed. Our goal will be to find the balance between safeguarding health of our people while also being able to effectively run our businesses as we return to the office. Detailed on the following pages are suggested best practices by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce as we head back to the office. Following is a link if you would like to print a copy of the Suggested Best Practices: https://www.mnchamber.com/blog/covid-19-prevention-best-practices.The Stein Industries Coronavirus Task Force will be reviewing this and other information as we develop and implement a specific Stein Industries Return to Work Policy addressing the following:

 

  • Facility Cleaning

  • Sanitation

  • Use of Masks

  • Social Distancing

  • Visitor in Facilities

  • Travel Policy

  • Employee Health Monitoring

  • Communication & Education

  • Employee Responsibilities

More information and Reminders:

  • Masks:

​​

  • The CDC has now recommended the use of cloth mask coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. This is particularly important as asymptomatic individuals can pass the virus.

 

  • We are now recommending use of masks when in Stein Industries facilities. This will likely be a requirement as we finalize Return to Work Policies in the coming weeks.

  • Illness Tracking Reminder:

  • We are asking that you continue to communicate any illness to your manager so we can track illness and time outside the office. This information is important and relevant to HR as the health of our employees is critical information relevant to State programs and the Emergency Leave Act.

  • Watch for Symptoms:

 

  • The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Watch for these symptoms each day.

  • Emergencies:

  • Dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion, an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

  • Requirement to Disclose:

  • Stein Industries requires that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19.

  • If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis, inform HR immediately at:  jengen@stein-industires.com

 

  • Stein Industries Updates:

 

 

  • Direct Email:

  • The direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com  

The continuing effort and commitment from Stein Industries employees has been extraordinary. We thank you again for your strength, resolution, and commitment to servicing our customers. Our goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise, and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual!

April 10 Update

 

Stein Industries is now in day twenty-six of our “Work from Home” and “Modified Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse Schedules”.  We, as an organization, have embraced this new style of work and have continued to successfully operate our businesses, maintain communications and service our customers.  We also want to commend each division as each has managed to identify and “pivot” to solutions that solve real life problems that the virus has caused for our customers. Whether it be switches for ventilators in the medical community from E-Switch; new protection shields and merchandising solutions in grocery and retail from Airflo and Carlson; or transportation of essential equipment around the country from Ten, we are staying close to our customers, listening and bringing impressive solutions to the marketplace.  Well done!!

 

Today’s update will provide additional information and tools that will help us navigate through this unprecedented time.  The Governor has extended the shelter in place policies through May 4th so we will continue our efforts to support this plan with our “Work From Home” and “Modified Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse Schedules” to align with this timing.

 

We are proud of Minnesota and the results to date of the statewide efforts.  Our organization plays a role in the daily efforts to implement social distancing and keep separation from others to slow the spread of COVID-19 while at the same time maintaining a basic level of economic productivity.  We each play a role and only together as an organization and community will we be able to overcome this virus and work our way back to the “new normal” in the coming months.

 

Updates & Information:

 

  • Governor Walz April 8th Update:

    • Extending Work From Home to May 4th;

    • Minnesota has remained flat - best in the nation but must continue to be vigilant.  This allows medical community to prepare for peak expected mid-May but could continue to push out further into June or July;

    • Testing will continue;

    • Social distancing is the only solution at the moment; social distancing is working, and we must continue to be relentless in implementation;

    • These are still very challenging times but are moving in the right direction;  

    • Governor Walz will continue to review data models and only open the State up again when it makes sense and is safe for the people of Minnesota.

 

  • Work from Home and Modified Warehouse Plans:

    • We are extending our work from home and modified warehouse plans through May 4th to align with the Governor’s executive order.  We will continue to monitor State and local communications for any updates and requirements that impact this plan.

  • Masks:

    • The CDC has now recommended the use of cloth mask coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.  This is particularly important as asymptomatic individuals can still pass the virus to others.

    • We have now provided masks to all employees and their families and recommend use per the suggestions and guidelines of the CDC.  Please let us know if you need additional masks and we will provide.

    • We will also be donating a significant number of masks, and all our N95 masks to the medical community and our local hospitals.

  • Illness Tracking Reminder:

    • We are asking that you continue to communicate any illness to your manager so we can track illness and time outside the office.  This information is important and relevant to HR in that understanding the health of our employees is critical information relevant to State programs and the Emergency Leave Act.

 

  • VPN Connections:

    • We are noticing some common themes that are happening with connections to our VPN as it relates to our 2-Factor Software Duo.  The VPN will disconnect if you are inactive on your computer for 2 hours, your active session lasts more than 10 hours, or if your computer goes into power savings mode, sleep, or inactive mode.  The next time the computer wakes up or if you bump the keyboard or mouse to activate the computer, the VPN may try to connect again, which will activate another Duo request to activate the connection.  This has probably caught some users by surprise especially if you left your computer on instead of logging off.  Remember, only approve the VPN connection if you are sitting in front of your computer and trying to connect to the Stein network.  Our recommendation to reduce this occurrence is to log off your computer at the end of the day when you are finished working.

 

  • Time and Attendance Approval:

    • In order to track any employee affected by COVID-19, we recommend you use the following new codes for time cards and payroll as needed:

  • FF-PSL-EE (Families First Paid Sick Leave, Employee's Own Illness)

  • FF-PSL-FAM (Families First Paid Sick Leave, Family Member)

  • FF-FMLA (Families First FMLA)

  • Furlough (If this is selected, it acts as an ‘Unpaid Absence’)

If any of the codes are selected, you need to add the number of hours in the time card the employee is out (needed for both non-exempt & exempt).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • KnowBe4 – Information and Reminders:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reminders:

 

  • Watch for Symptoms:

    • The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough and shortness of breath.  Watch for these symptoms each day.

 

  • Emergencies:

    • Dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion or an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

  • Requirement to Disclose:

    • Stein Industries requires that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19.  

    • If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis, inform HR immediately at:  jengen@stein-industires.com

 

  • Direct Email:

    • The direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com  

The continuing effort and commitment from Stein Industries employees to persevere through this time has been extraordinary. It is an amazing demonstration of what this organization can do when we come together and put our minds towards a common goal. And our goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual! 

 

Wishing everyone in the Stein Industries family a joyous and safe holiday weekend!!

March 31 Update

 

Stein Industries is now in day sixteen of our “Work from Home” and “Modified Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse Schedules”. We are continuing to operate our businesses, maintain communications with our supply chain and most importantly service our customers. The Coronavirus Task Force continues to meet regularly to share specific issues and best practices.

 

Today’s update will provide the latest information related to travel and work from home and provide additional tools that may help us navigate through this unprecedented time. The Coronavirus Task Force continues to be impressed with how this organization has pulled together, made significant work style transitions and continues to operate at a high level.

 

We also want to highlight two products that we are proud to say the Stein Industries family of companies are providing that are contributing to the fight against COVID-19 and the spread of the virus. E-Switch is providing power switches to a Nihon Kohden Ventilator that is used in hospitals from Los Angeles to New York:

 

Nihon Kohden NKV-550

 

Airflo just introduced the COVID-19 Protection Shield to help grocery cashiers, pharmacists and other service works provide customer service while implementing social distancing:

 

COVID-19 Protection Shield

 

 

 

 

We are proud of our organizations for their daily efforts and for all that we are doing to adapt and support our communities in any way we can. It appears from the data and forecasts that the next several weeks will be critical and that all of us need to continue our efforts to maintain social distancing and keep separation from others to slow the spread of COVID-19. We each play a role and only together as an organization and as a community will we be able to overcome this the virus and work our way back to life as we know it should be lived.

 

Here are the updates for the week:

 

Updates & Information:

 

  • Travel Ban - We are extending our travel ban that includes all international and domestic business travel through April 30th. This includes local trips to customers or suppliers that are non-essential or business critical. We will review the travel ban on April 30th to determine plan of action going forward regarding business travel.

 

  • Work from Home and Modified Warehouse Plans – We are extending our work from home and modified warehouse plans through April 30th. We will continue to monitor State and local communications for any updates and requirements that impact this plan.

 

  • Illness Tracking – We are asking that you continue to communicate any illness to your manager so we can track illness and time outside the office. This information is important and relevant to HR in that understanding the health of our employees is critical information to prevent the passing of COVID-19 but also relevant to state programs that reimburse the company under the emergency leave act.

 

  • Masks – Out of care and kindness we are continuing to have suppliers send us masks from China for distribution to employees, their families and our local medical community. We understand there are several theories on use of masks and ultimately this remains a personal decision. In the coming weeks however, we do expect to proactively send via mail each of our employees a batch of masks for their families to use or provide to their local community. We will send these to your address on file with HR. We will also be donating a significant number of masks, particularly the N95 levels to the medical community and our local hospitals.

 

  • 401K – Qualifying Distributions – Please see information below that was provided by Fidelity and related to qualifying distributions related to Coronavirus:

 

QUALIFYING CORONAVIRUS-RELATED DISTRIBUTIONS (QCDs): In its current form, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act would allow participants to take penalty-free withdrawals of up to $100,000 for those who meet certain criteria related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). These include adverse financial consequences as a result of being quarantined, furloughed, laid off or having work hours reduced; being unable to work due to a lack of child care as a result of COVID-19; or closing or reducing hours of a business owned or operated by the individual due to COVID-19.

 

Important to note:

 

Plan Withdrawals:

  • Waives the 10% early withdrawal penalty for individuals impacted by the Coronavirus (up to $100,000).

    • Income taxes from these distributions can be spread over three years;

    • 20% Federal income tax withholding is not required;

    • Participants can recontribute / repay the funds to the 401(k) plan within three years without regard to the annual contribution limit.

 

Plan Loans:

  • Increases the maximum loan limit for qualifying individuals to $100,000 or 100% of vested account balance for loans taken within 180 days of enactment.

    • For a qualified participant that already has loan(s) outstanding, payments may be delayed by up to one year, even if it extends the total repayment period to greater than five years.

 

Temporary Waiver of Required Minimum Distributions (RMD):

  • Any RMD to be made in 2020 is waived.

(Congress may consider additional measures in the coming days and weeks.)

 

SAFE HARBOR HARDSHIP WITHDRAWALS: Under regulations issued in September 2019, a new safe harbor was created for hardship withdrawals due to a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)-declared major disaster. Accordingly, if FEMA declares a major disaster in a state as a result of COVID-19, a safe harbor hardship withdrawal would be available for 401(k) or 403(b) plans to cover a participant’s expenses and losses (including loss of income) provided that their home or workplace is located in an area designated by FEMA for individual assistance.

 

  • KnowBe4 - Reminders and Information:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • HSA - Updates from HealthEquity:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update Reminders:

 

  • Watch for Symptoms: The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough and shortness of breath. Watch for these symptoms each day.

  • Emergencies: Dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion or an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

  • Requirement to Disclose: Stein Industries requires that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19. If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis inform HR immediately at:              jengen@stein-industries.com

  • Stein Industries Updates: This update along with all previously posted information will remain on the Stein Coronavirus website:  www.stein-industries.com/coronavirus

  • Direct E-mail: The direct e-mail link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com  

The effort and commitment we have seen from Stein Industries employees has been extraordinary. The daily communications that remain so critical to our businesses and community are continuing. It is an amazing demonstration of what people can do when they come together and put their minds towards and for a common goal. And our collective goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual!

 

March 26 Update

 

Stein Industries is now in day eleven of our “Work from Home” and “Modified Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse Schedule” implementation. We are overwhelmed with pride as to how this organization has handled the transition and embraced our new work routines.  We are continuing to operate our businesses, communicate with our supply chain partners and most importantly service our customers. The Coronavirus Task Force continues to meet regularly to share specific issues and best practices.  

 

Today’s update will provide more information on COVID-19, address several questions that have been asked and provide additional information related to our plans related to the new “stay at home” order from Governor Tim Walz. We also want to address the questions that have come in relation to staff and hour reductions in the most direct and straightforward manner possible. Our management team is looking at every scenario on a division by division bases to determine the economic impact that COVID-19 virus is having on our industries and markets that we participate. Our desire of course is to manage through without staff reductions but the economic reality of revenue declines for months if not quarters may force us to make difficult staffing decisions. You have our commitment that we will be direct, transparent and straightforward and we will do everything we can to support any individual that is impacted by changes that may come. 

 

We also want to take a moment and thank the employees of Stein Industries for all that you are doing for the businesses while also taking the Coronavirus seriously. The data over the past eleven days for our state has been better than many areas of the country and we should be proud of the role we are playing in balancing business & economic productivity with the social distancing requirements that are consistent with the goals established by Governor Walz.  

 

Here are the Updates for the Week:

 

Updates & Learnings:

 

  • Minnesota “Stay Home” Executive Order – on Wednesday March 25th Governor Walz announced a “stay home” order to Minnesota for the period March 27th – April 10th. The impact on Stein Industries will be as follows:

 

  • E-Switch - will continue to operate as an essential business as certified by several medical supply companies that have issued us letters declaring our product essential to their production of ventilators and other relevant equipment.

 

  • AirFlo Merchandising Systems - will continue to operate as an essential business as broadly certified by the Produce Marketing Association (PMA). A certification letter has been provided that can be utilized by employees that conduct food business and support grocery stores as also reflected in the executive order issued by the Governor.

 

  • Ten Logistics – will not be impacted by the executive order as all operations are currently being conducted by at home workers. With that said, logistics is an important element of the country’s economic engine and is also called out in the executive order as it moves the many products that must get to their destinations so essential and critical business can be conducted nationwide.

 

  • Carlson Fixtures – at this time, Carlson Fixtures will not be considered an essential company. All those employees able to work from home will continue to do so, serving customers with information, quotations, inventory reports, week touch base calls and all other activity. From an assembly, warehouse and shipping perspective we will not be able to run our regular hours and operations during the 3/27 – 4/10 period.  

    Management will be working in the coming days to determine a schedule and plan of action impacting warehouse personnel that allows us to accomplish the “musts” like emptying arriving containers while also respecting the executive order issued by the Governor.

 

  • Stein Corporate – Stein Industries Corporate will continue to operate as an essential business as it is fully aligned with the essential divisions providing daily, weekly, monthly information & critical support to each operating unit.

  • COVID-19 Symptoms – detailed below is a chart from the WHO and Center for Disease control that provides a comparative analysis of symptoms from colds, flu & allergies:

 

  • Illness Tracking – each of the division managers and supervisors have established illness tracking spreadsheets to track illness and time outside the office. This information is important and relevant to HR in that understanding the health of our employees is critical information to prevent the passing of COVID-19 but also relevant to state programs that reimburse the company applicable time utilized under the emergency leave act that we are implementing. Please notify your manager or supervisor if you are ill and managers please utilize the spreadsheets to ensure we are tracking illnesses and time outside the office appropriately.

 

  • Masks – due to the care and kindness of several or our suppliers we have received over 1,000 masks from China for distribution to employees and their families. We understand there are several theories on use of masks in protecting against COVID-19 and we have provided one article below discussion the effectiveness of wearing masks. Currently, use of masks in our facilities is optional but know that your Presidents and managers have them available for you and your family if you would like them. Also note that any extra masks, particularly the N95 levels, will be donated to local doctors and medical facilities in our community.


Wearing a face mask is certainly not an iron-clad guarantee that you won’t get sick – viruses can also transmit through the eyes and tiny viral particles, known as aerosols, can penetrate masks. However, masks are effective at capturing droplets, which is a main transmission route of coronavirus, and some studies have estimated a roughly fivefold protection versus no barrier alone, although others have found lower levels of effectiveness. If you are likely to be in close contact with someone infected, a mask cuts the chance of the disease being passed on. If you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, or have been diagnosed, wearing a mask can also protect others. So, masks are crucial for health and social care workers looking after patients and are also recommended for family members who need to care for someone who is ill – ideally both the patient and caregiver should have a mask. – The Guardian Web Site.

 

 

  • 401K Investments – in this time of uncertainty there are many questions that come up from employees regarding personal 401K investments and what is best thing to do. As a matter of practice, Stein Industries management is not allowed to provide investment advice however we do have resources available that can. Please contact:

Ross Dahlof                                                                      Scott Lichter

Investment Advisor                                                           Investment Advisor

952-653-1071                                                                   952-653-1077

rdahlof@christensengroup.com                                        slichter@christensengroup.com

Spencer Rose

Investment Advisor

952-653-1047

srose@christensengroup.com

Stein Industries Plan Information:

 

  • Name - Stein Industries, Inc. 401(k) & Profit-Sharing Plan

  • Plan Number - 12261

  • To update or make changes to investments or plan contributions,employees should contact Fidelity via the following options:

  • Password Changes – consistent with our Cybersecurity policies, company passwords need to be changed on a regular basis. The timing of the changes will continue even as many are working from home. Please see instructions to change password remotely: 

 

  1. Start your PC.

  2. Don’t open any programs.

  3. Log into the Stein VPN (using Watch Guard) with your current password.

  4. Once you’re logged in, press Ctrl-Alt-Del 

  5. A screen will appear – select Change Password.

 

 

 

 

 

 

You will have to enter your current password, and then enter your new password:

 

Once your new password is accepted, follow the Mitel Phone System instructions that have been

provided to you and update your Mitel password, so you can receive voice mail in Outlook.

Also remember if you receive email on our phone or other approved devise, your e-mail password

will need to be updated in each device as well.

 

  • Frequently Asked Questions

  • How are we protecting employees still working in our facilities – steps implemented to protect employees working in our facilities include; elimination of all non-essential visitors, minimizing contact between individuals within the office, eliminating warehouse personnel from coming to the front office, daily cleaning, authorizing managers to implement rotating shifts and to alter hours as needed, providing gloves and masks to all employees who want them. 

 

  • How are we handling employees that are “high risk” to COVID-19 exposure – if an employee self identifies as “high risk” to COVID-19 exposure and is unable to work from home we are providing an extra 80 hours/10 workdays at no loss of wages to the employee under the emergency leave policy. All other accrued PTO time is also available for use if the employee is taking time off away from work. 

 

  • How are we handling a situation where employees don’t feel comfortable coming in even if the company is open under an “essential company” designation - employees that choose to voluntarily stay home while we are still operating will not be penalized and will be able to utilize PTO for as many days as they have available. At this time, voluntary time away from work will not qualify for extra hours under the emergency leave policy.

 

  • If employees are required to stay home, will there be compensation – in the event of a “stay home” or complete shut-down determined by either the Stein Task Coronavirus Task Force or by the State of MN, employees, under the emergency leave policy, will be eligible for an extra 80 hours/10 workdays at no loss of wages to the employee. We are also continuing to  examine the many state and federal programs that are now in various stages of approval to determine employer/employee options.

 

  • How will various time off situations impact health care benefits -  Stein Industries is currently reviewing the state and federal programs to determine the best way to address health care benefits if an employee is not working due to one of the many scenarios possible. We are committed to working through the different scenarios and having a clear direction for each situation as state and federal programs become finalized.

 

Update Reminders:

 

  • Watch for Symptoms: The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough and shortness of breath.  Watch for these symptoms each day.

 

  • Emergencies - dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion or an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

 

  • Requirement to Disclose – Stein Industries requires that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19. If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis, inform HR immediately at:  jengen@stein-industries.com

 

 

  • Direct Email – the direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force for non-emergency matters is up and functioning:  covid@stein-industries.com  

 

 

Thank you again to all Stein Industries employees for your commitment and efforts as we navigate through this extraordinary time. Communication remains the blood lines of our organizations and we encourage you to keep your President and managers up to speed with any information, issues related to the business and please be proactive with suggestions and ways we can improve. Our collective goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual! 

 

March 19 Update

 

Stein Industries is now in day four of the “Work From Home” and “Modified Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse schedule” rollout.  The Coronavirus Task Force continues to meet daily via Zoom to review the rollout, share best practices and understand specific issues that need to be addressed. Today’s update will cover several learnings and action items that have come up from the initial rollout as well as address plans relative to cleaning our facilities and what specific actions we will be taking if we have an employee identified with a positive COVID-19 diagnosis. We want to thank the employees of Stein Industries; for taking the Coronavirus seriously, for handling the work transitions with efficiency and for demonstrating a professionalism that reflects positively on our internal teammates, our suppliers, our extended sales networks and most importantly our customers:

 

Updates & Learnings:

 

  • Printing at home – each division President has worked with those requesting to print at home to determine a plan of action for each scenario. For those approved to print at home, a reminder that all documents printed should be considered private and confidential and all existing user and confidentiality policies of the company apply. We also ask that if you are printing at home, you save all printed documents and bring them to the office for shredding when we get past the Coronavirus restrictions.

 

  • ADP Clock In/Out Remotely - employees are now able to clock in/out from any device that has internet connection including cell phones and I-Pads. Managers will also be able to approve timecards from any internet connection.   Remember, employees still required to submit PTO if they are taking time as a personal day. For the employees working in the warehouses, please continue to clock in/out from the time clock in the warehouses.

 

  • ADP Digital Pay Statements - between the dates of March 23rd and March 31st, direct deposit pay statements will transition from paper to digital based. Digital will become the default delivery setting for pay.  You can still access a copy of your pay statements by going to ADP – Myself – Pay – Pay Statements and click on ‘View Check’ below the copy of your check.  

  • Tech Support – a huge acknowledgment to Steve and the IT group for having the vision and plan to prepare Stein Industries and our network for remote connections, VPN’s, multifactor security authentications and the bandwidth that is required for a large at home workforce. This week the team is working tirelessly to get and keep us up and running and they remain committed to supporting our employees in any way they can. To this end, please use your judgement when reaching out for help into the late evening hours.  If it is an emergency, they will be glad to help - but if it can wait until the morning please consider this as an option. The standard practice, if able to connect via the VPN, remains to fill out an IT Service Request. They are committed to helping all and will be back to you with the help you need just as soon as possible.

 

  • Expense Checks – while personal expenses will most likely be limited due to travel ban, any personal expenses approved through Concur will have checks mailed to you at the home addresses on file with human resources.

 

  • Email Etiquette – with our large at home work force our email activity seems to have increased dramatically.  Please consider these email tips to increase efficiency:

 

  • One person in the TO:  they will then know they own the answer.

  • CC only those that are critical to the information.

  • Eliminate REPLY ALL “thank you”.

  • Utilize clear and consistent SUBJECT LINES.

  • Avoid changing SUBJECT LINES which upsets the string

 

  • Office Etiquette – currently we continue to have a staff in our buildings either permanently or on a rotating schedule.  When in the office please be respectful of others personal space and try and maintain a six-foot separation.   Gathering in groups of multiple people should be minimized and only hold meetings in larger conference  areas where people can spread out to accommodate the six-foot spacing.   Ideally you would use Zoom for virtual meetings – a very effect communications tool that many are now using to hold meetings and maintain daily and effective communications.

 

  • Office Voice Mail – the entire office has now had their office voice mail linked and transferred to their email.  If you would have any questions or need help utilizing this function, please fill out an IT Service Request and they will get with you as soon.

 

  • Clean Desk Policy – considering the current situation and in anticipation of additional cleaning needed, the next time employees are in the office we ask that they clean off their desk surfaces before leaving for the day.  This will help immensely in the instance that we do have a positive diagnosis in the building and a “deep clean” is necessary.

 

Additional Updates & Plans:

 

  • Watch For Symptoms:   The most common symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are fever, cough and shortness of breath.  Watch for these symptoms each day.

 

  • Resources Available for Care/Questions Regarding The Virus - If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, stay home and contact the state health hotline  (1-800-657-3903) or your health care provider.  Due to overwhelming strain on our medical facilities and emergency rooms, the CDC is recommending that people with mild symptoms who suspect COVID-19 utilize Telemedicine options as much as possible.  If you are currently covered under Allina Health Aetna, you can utilize the Telemedicine option via www.onlinevisit.allinahealth.org or call (1-888-984-3638).   If you utilize a different health care provider, you can check with that plan’s website or contact alternative resources such as www.OnCare.org for more information and options.  Deductibles related to Telemedicine visits due to the COVID-19 are being waived for the next 60 days.

 

  • Emergencies - dial 911 in the event of an emergency - if you are having trouble breathing, chest pains, new confusion or an inability to rouse, or bluish lips or face.

 

  • Requirement to Disclose – Stein Industries will implement a strict requirement that employees must notify us if they have the symptoms or have a confirmed case of COVID-19.   If you have symptoms or a positive diagnosis inform HR immediately.

 

  • Time Off For COVID-19 - relative to time off and related pay for a positively diagnosed employee, we have enacted an emergency leave policy that will provide up to 80 hours/10 workdays at no loss of wages to the employee.   An emergency leave is defined as days in which an individual is unable to work due to one of four qualifying reasons related to COVID-19:

 

  • The employee has a current diagnosis of COVID-19.

  • The worker is quarantined (including self-quarantine due to potential exposure) at the instruction of a health care provider, employer or government official.

  • The worker is caring for another person who has COVID-19 or who is under a quarantine related to COVID-19.

  • The worker is caring for a child or other individual who is unable to care for themselves due to the COVID-19 related closing of their school, childcare facility or other care program.

 

  • Cases of COVID-19 – Stein Industries plans on taking the following actions for suspected (symptoms but no test) and confirmed COVID-19 cases with employees:

 

  1. If an employee is exhibiting symptoms that fit within the framework established for COVID-19 -we will send them home and request they get checked or, if the employee notifies us that they have tested positive  - for both cases we would mandate a self-quarantine of 14 days. 

  2. Shut down the area(s) where the affected employee was working or would’ve had contact with (i.e. breakroom, bathroom, etc.).

  3. Anyone who had contact with that person or been exposed to a transmission from that person should be notified (without specifying the name of the impacted employee) and be sent home for self-quarantine of 14 days.

  4. Deep clean and sanitize areas prior to re-opening area(s) for activity.

 

  • Office Cleaning Plan – Stein Industries uses Marsden Services for our office cleaning.  Marsden is a top tier building services company with over 52 locations across the USA.  The current office cleaning plan includes preventative cleaning at the end of each day.

 

  • Preventative Cleaning Scope - LEVEL ONE DISINFECTION - Normal EPA Approved disinfectants are used to sanitize critical items that come into contact with skin. This would include shared articles that our staff would touch on any given day, including but not limited to the following:

 

  1. Door handles                                                        7. Remotes

  2. Light Switches                                                      8. Microwave Buttons & Handles  

  3. Cabinet Handles                                                  9. Handrails

  4. Refrigerator Handles                                          10. Telephones

  5. Restroom Fixtures                                              11. Breakroom countertops & tables

  6. HVAC Control Buttons                                        12. Conference room tables

 

  • Scope of Cleaning if Confirmed Case In Our Facilities – in the case where we have a confirmed Covid -19 case in one of our buildings we will coordinate a cleaning plan with the CDC or utilize State level directives.  We suspect it would include a 24-hour shut down and “deep clean” that would include the following:

 

LEVEL THREE - DISINFECTION

High-level EPA approved disinfectants on all critical and non-critical items that would come into contact with either mucous membrane skin contact or non-intact skin. These disinfectants are generally only found in EPA Approved, hospital grade, healthcare settings to kill endospore-forming bacteria that can cause infection to spread. Sporicidal disinfectant products are traditionally used in surgical centers or in facilities susceptible to dangerous micro-organisms. The process of this disinfecting would most likely be full agitation along with some fogging/spraying of disinfectant in cloth material on chairs, and other furniture fixtures and partitions. High-level disinfectant products are typically of the following compounds: Bleach, Hydrogen Peroxide, Peracetic Acid, Hypochlorite or Glutaraldehyde.  All items in level one cleaning are included in level three and we suspect additional Items that would be sanitized would include:

 

a. Windowsills                                                              e.  Presentation Boards

b. Vertical metal on Partitions                                      f.   All Cabinet Surfaces

c. Door Frames                                                            g.  Wall Surfaces

d. Various Desk Surfaces                                             h. Some hard surface ceiling

 

  • We have also established a new direct email link to the Stein Industries Task Force to be used by employees for open communications and feedback of non-emergency matters.  The email is covid@stein-industries.com  where you can 1) make suggestions  2) provide feedback  3) issue concerns that you may have.

Thank you again to all Stein Industries employees for your perseverance through this critical  time in our organization.  Communication is important and we encourage you to keep your President and managers up to speed with any information, issues related to the business and also utilize the new direct email address if you would like to make suggestions, provide feedback or relay any issues to the Task Force directly.

 

Our collective goal remains in place - to service our customers and maintain our relationships at the same level of communications, expertise and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouses as usual.  Thank you for your understanding and patience during this unprecedented time for our organization and community.  

 

March 16 Update

As the Coronavirus situation continues to unfold quickly, the Stein Industries task force met Sunday afternoon, March 15th and made several important decisions.   Effective immediately, Stein Industries will be taking critical steps to support the nations efforts to slow the advancement of the Coronavirus.  The new actions below will be explained in detail be each division President and at Corporate your Department Manager first thing Monday morning March 16th:

 

New Actions & Plans:

 

  • Stein Industries will be moving to a “Work From Home” program with implementation starting Monday March 16th.   This program will impact employees whose job positions and responsibilities are able to successfully be completed while working at home.   This is currently an optional but recommended program that will continue for the next 15 days and be reviewed again on March 31st.   The purpose of this program is to minimize contact between workers and reduce the chance of Coronavirus spread.

 

  • Each division President and Corporate manager have been given broad authority to implement this program, determine to what degree each employee is able to work at home and to determine when they are required to be in the office.   They will work hand in hand with Corporate departments to implement a plan that allows us to continue running our businesses and servicing the needs of our customers while also respecting the need for separation among workers to slow the advancement of the Coronavirus.

 

  • In respect to our Assembly, Shipping and Warehouse operations, this week the Presidents will be working with our Operation & Warehouse Managers to implement rotating work schedules and potentially modified hours to effectively create separation between workers and minimize the chance of the virus spreading.  Our goal is to continue operations to serve our customers but also respect the need to prevent the advancement of the Coronavirus.

 

  • While the above steps will help to prevent the advancement of the virus within our organization it does not replace the need for each one of us to be vigilant and engage in good hygiene practices while at work and at home, especially regular hand washing, for 20 seconds with soap and water (optimal), or if water is not available, using alcohol-based hand sanitizers.  

 

  • Importantly, and a critical reminder, if you are feeling ill, have a sore throat, temperature, or have cold or flu-like symptoms do not come to work.  Contact your care provider and determine the correct plan of action to address your specific symptoms.

 

  • It is also important to heed the advice of experts and those countries that have already been through the many stages of the virus to minimize social interactions and to avoid large groups of people.   It is inconclusive at this point as to whether a person must have the symptoms of the virus to be contagious so minimize interactions over the next several weeks with all people, those with symptoms or those without symptoms will be critical for our local community and our nation to overcome the Coronavirus.

 

  • To this point above, when it is possible you should try and maintain 6’ between individuals.  We are asking Presidents and managers to minimize large group meetings and begin using Zoom, telephones and conference calls to communicate even between departments when possible.     

 

  • Regarding time management we will be working with ADP to set up the ability for employees to clock -in while working remote.  Until this is set up, we ask that you set up a system to manually track time.  It is also our expectation and intention to have everyone earn a full 40 hours regardless of rotations or if modified hours requested by management are less than 40 hours.   We should continue to record in and out for lunch and keep standard availability to a normal schedule.  Overtime, which should be minimal must still be approved by Managers.   If you have any questions related to hours, pay, or specific situations, speak with your division President, Manager or HR.   

 

  • Regarding a situation where we have an employee that is diagnosed positively for COVID-19, we will be following specific recommendations and actions required by the CDC.   This will include notification to other employees as well as potentially cleaning areas where the worker was active.   Relative to time off and related pay for a positively diagnosed employee,  we have enacted an emergency leave policy that will provide up to 80 hours/10 workdays at no loss of wages to the employee.   An emergency leave is defined as days in which an individual is unable to work due to one of four qualifying reasons related to COVID-19:

 

  • The employee has a current diagnosis of COVID-19.

  • The worker is quarantined (including self-quarantine due to potential exposure) at the instruction of a health care provider, employer or government official.

  • The worker is caring for another person who has COVID-19 or who is under a quarantine related to COVID-19.

  • The worker is caring for a child or other individual who is unable to care for themselves due to the COVID-19 related closing of their school, childcare facility or other care program.

  • For those employees participating in the “Work From Home” program, laptops will be provided for your use at home.   It is understood that use of the equipment and use of data through this equipment will be consistent with all existing user and confidentiality policies of the company.   It is also our expectation that you connect to Stein Industries network though the approved VPN and Multifactor approval methods provided and approved only by the Stein Industries IT department.   If you have any questions or need help with the set up or usage of this equipment please contact DJ McClain at mobile 763-498-1465 or Steve Cromer at mobile 612-803-7735.

 

  • Cell phone information that was made available has been added to OUTLOOK for several Stein Industries employees.  It would be ideal if the leadership teams at each division exchanged cell phone numbers and each employee had the cell phone number of their manager.

Continuing Actions:

 

  • We are working with our cleaning service to make sure that common areas such as restrooms, conference rooms & lunchrooms are being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected daily.  We are also exploring options if we need a “deep clean” or have circumstances we need additional cleaning services.

 

  • Travel ban remains in place including all international and domestic business travel.   This includes local trips to customers or suppliers that isn’t essential or business critical.  We will review the travel ban on 3/31/2020 to determine plan of action going forward regarding business travel.

 

  • We are asking any employee who has or will travel personally to places designated by the CDC as at high risk for COVID-19, effective at the time of departure or return, or who knowingly has been exposed to others who have traveled to such locations to self-quarantine for 14 days.

 

  • For others who are traveling outside the Minneapolis area personally or have visitors from outside the area, we ask that you apply good judgement, try to avoid areas of high coronavirus incidence.   Please consider your fellow workers and  if concerned talk to your supervisor or human resources before returning to the office.

 

  • Visitors to our buildings will be restricted to those who provide essential services including mail delivery, office supplies, cleaners, building maintenance, truck drivers, blanket wrappers & lumpers.  Non-essential visits from customers, suppliers, vendors and non-employees are to be avoided.

 

  • Food deliveries to the buildings will be allowed but please arrange to meet the delivery driver at the door of your building and don’t bring them into the lobbies.

 

  • We will not be utilizing or bringing in new temporary workers to the buildings.  No new temps should be brought into our facilities until further notice.

  • We have postponed the Twins Home Opener celebration until a later date in the year where we can still have it catered by an outside service and all gather and interact without increasing risk of exposure.

 

  • We have set up a web site:   www.stein-industries.com/coronavirus where all updates and information will be posted and remain posted until it is determined that we as an organization and community are past the threat and issues related to the virus.

The Stein Industries task force will meet on a regular basis and will work though issues that come up as we implement the Work From Home and Rotating/Modified Shift Warehouse plans.   Communication is critical and we ask that you consistently keep your President and Managers up to speed with any issues, challenges as well as offer any ideas and suggestions as to how to make this plan work better.   Our goal is to service our customer with same level of expertise and energy as if we are all in the office and warehouse as usual.    We know we have the people, the desire and the ability to execute this plan effectively.   We will come through this terrible pandemic and be a better company for it.  Thank you for your understanding and patience during this unprecedented time for our organization, the community and our nation.

March 12 Update

The World Health Organization has now declared the COVID-19 outbreak a Pandemic.  Minnesota is currently in containment mode and as such we, at Stein Industries, are continuing our efforts and plans to protect our workplace in the event of an infectious disease outbreak.  We understand concerns about COVID-19 are top of mind and we want to share information about how we are responding as well as resources that are available for testing and care.

 

Current Actions:

 

  • Stein Industries has formed a task force that includes all Corporate Managers and each Division President.  We will be meeting weekly to address the latest developments and will increase these meetings as needed.   Following each meeting and Stein Industries Coronavirus Update will be issued to the full company.

 

  • We are continuing to encourage employees to engage in good hygiene practices while at work and at home, especially regular hand washing, for 20 seconds with soap and water (optimal), or if water is not available, using alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

 

  • Reminder, that if you are feeling ill, have a sore throat, temperature, or have cold or flu-like symptoms do not come to work.  Contact your care provider and determine the correct plan of action to address your specific symptoms.

 

  • We are working with our cleaning service to make sure that common areas such as restrooms, conference rooms & lunchrooms are being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected daily.  

 

  • We are expanding our travel ban to include all international and domestic business travel.   This includes local trips to customers or suppliers that isn’t essential or business critical.  We will review the travel ban on 3/31/2020 to determine plan of action going forward regarding business travel.

 

  • We are asking any employee who has or will travel personally to places designated by the CDC as at high risk for COVID-19, effective at the time of departure or return, or who knowingly has been exposed to others who have traveled to such locations to self-quarantine for 14 days.

 

  • For others who are traveling outside the Minneapolis area personally or have visitors from outside the area, we ask that you apply good judgement, try to avoid areas of high coronavirus incidence.   Please consider your fellow workers and  if concerned talk to your supervisor or human resources before returning to the office.

 

  • Visitors to our buildings will be restricted to those who provide essential services including mail delivery, office supplies, cleaners, building maintenance, truck drivers, blanket wrappers & lumpers.  Non-essential visits from customers, suppliers, vendors and non-employees are to be avoided at least until 3/31/2020 when we will re-evaluate.

 

  • Food deliveries to the buildings will be allowed but please arrange to meet the delivery driver at the door of your building and don’t bring them into the lobbies.

 

  • We will not be utilizing or bringing in new temporary workers to the buildings.   If already in place temps can continue to come in, but no new temps should be brought into our facilities until it is reviewed and determined in the future.

 

  • We will postpone the upcoming Twins Home Opener celebration until a later date in the year where we can still have it catered by an outside service and all gather and interact without increasing risk of exposure.

  • We have also set up a web site:   www.stein-industries.com/coronavirus where all updates and information will be posted and remain posted until it is determined that we as an organization and community are past the threat and issues related to the virus.

Testing and Care Information:

 

For employees who are currently enrolled in Stein’s health plan, Aetna has chosen to waive all copays for telemedicine and diagnostic testing related to the virus for the next 90 days.

 

  • For the next 90 days, Allina Health Aetna (AHA) will offer zero co-pay telemedicine visits for any reason.  AHA members should use telemedicine as their first line of defense in order to limit potential exposure in physician offices.  Cost sharing will be waived for all video visits through the CVS MinuteClinic app, Aetna-covered Teledoc offerings and in-network providers delivering synchronous virtual care (live videoconferencing).

  • Through Aetna’s Healing Better program, members who are diagnosed with COVID-19 will receive a care package containing CVS over-the-counter medications to help relieve symptoms.  The package will also include personal and household cleaning supplies to help keep others in the home protected from potential exposure.

  • Through existing care management programs, Aetna will proactively reach out to members most at risk for COVID-19.  Care managers will walk members through what they can do to protect themselves, where to get information on the virus and where to go to get tested.

  • For those who are covered under alternate health plans, please contact your insurance provider to find out more about what is available. 

  • Kare 11 recently ran a story regarding M Health Fairview which may be offering curb side service at four M Health Fair view locations.  You will need to call ahead (1-855-324-7843) for details regarding eligibility and availability.    

As this coronavirus situation continues to unfold, the Stein Industries task force will be meeting as needed and will be discussing issues and strategies that may include; alternatives related to remote work options, rotating work teams, various warehouse strategies, options for extended paid leave, impact of school closing on workforce, various mobile communication tools, potential information “hot lines” and all other related topics associated with the coronavirus . 

 

We are committed to consistent and open communications and will continue to update you on a weekly basis and post to the www.stein-industries.com/coronavirus site as we receive new information.   Thank you for your understanding and partnership in this unprecedented time in our organization and community.   If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact the Stein Industries Human Resources Department.

March 2 Update

We understand that our employees, suppliers and customers may have questions and concerns about the new coronavirus, now called COVID-19.  Be assured we are monitoring this situation and will be taking precautionary steps in the event the spread of this virus becomes a local concern.  This global situation is changing daily, so please know we will continue to update as information becomes available from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and other state or local agencies. 

 

Right now, most organizations are in the prevention stage of managing a potential outbreak. Consistent with the CDC and Allina Health Web site we are recommending the following simple, everyday habits to help prevent the spread of illness throughout our company and community:

  • As always, company personnel should stay home if they are feeling ill, have a fever of 100 degrees or more, or are exhibiting cold or flu-like symptoms. 

  • Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth. 

  • Cover coughs and sneezes. Use a tissue then properly dispose of the tissue. When a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.

  • Wash hands for 20 seconds under clean, running water to help prevent the spread of germs. Use hand sanitizer if hand washing is not possible.

  • Do not share water bottles, other drink containers or utensils. 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (i.e.: door handles and railings). 

  • Currently Stein Industries is not authorizing/approving any travel to China, Korea, or any of Asia and Europe.  We will continue to monitor the situation daily and determine if additional restrictions are needed in the future. 

  • Anyone planning travel internationally or domestically should review the recommendations posted on CDC's Travel Health Notices and keep an eye on the news for updates on this evolving situation.

  • For additional information about the New Coronavirus, please read below information recently published in the FAQ’s on the Allina Health Aetna member sign in web site.

 

You can find more information on COVID-19 at these links:

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