At least eight Fresno city employees have contracted COVID-19, according to mandatory notices sent by the city’s personnel department.
GV Wire viewed eight notices sent between Aug. 7 and Aug. 27. The city would not confirm whether the notices represent the total number of employees who have tested positive for the virus, or in which departments the affected individuals worked, citing privacy concerns.
“The figure is low for an organization of 3,700 employees over a 5-month period and, frankly, on any given workday, the City has a number of employees who call in sick for a variety of illnesses and symptoms,” City Hall spokesman Mark Standriff said via email.
Most Recent Notice Sent Today
“Yesterday, Management received confirmation a City of Fresno employee tested positive for COVID-19,” an email notice sent to employees said.
As with the prior notices, the date of the employee’s last day on the job and approximately where the employee last worked are included.
For the notice sent today, the employee worked at a city facility and city field work in the northwest part of town.
The notice also includes information on the protocols implemented by the city, including advising others who are known to have come in contact with the COVID-positive employee, as well as cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
“As always, the safety and health of all City employees is our top priority as we strive to ensure the continuous delivery of services to our community. We cannot control what happens to our employees when they are off the clock. We can only control their environment while at work by using the highest level of health and safety measures available,” Standriff said.
The city requires employee temperature screenings and COVID self-assessments prior to starting the work day. City Hall receives a disinfecting fog every Saturday, and a deep cleaning in the area where a COVID-positive employee last worked.
“We are working hard every day to reduce the spread of this pandemic and are proud of the positive response from our employees during this stressful time,” Standriff said.
Councilman, Union Leader Say System Works
“The City is leading by example for all employers on its own ordinance. Workers have a right to know if COVID is in their workplace and so the ordinance is serving its purpose.” — Councilman Nelson Esparza
The city council passed an ordinance last month requiring any employer in the city, including the city itself, to notify employees if a worker contracted COVID.
“The City is leading by example for all employers on its own ordinance. Workers have a right to know if COVID is in their workplace and so the ordinance is serving its purpose,” said Nelson Esparza, the councilman who drafted the ordinance.
Sam Frank, president of the Fresno City Employees Association union, said the city’s diligence on social distancing, providing protective equipment and working from home has paid off.
“I think that reflects in the relatively low numbers of employees so far that have gotten COVID-19,” Frank said. “They get an ‘A’ from the employees’ perspective as far as keeping the numbers down.”
Listing of Notices Sent
|Date Notice Sent||Employee’s Last Work Date||Locations Worked|
|Aug. 7, 2020||July 17, 2020||City facilities and city field work in southwest|
|Aug. 7, 2020||July 26, 2020||City facilities in central Fresno|
|Aug. 7, 2020||July 28, 2020||City facilities in southwest|
|Aug. 12, 2020||July 10, 2020||City Hall; city field work in southeast and central|
|Aug. 15, 2020||Aug. 7, 2020||City facilities and city field work in southeast|
|Aug. 18, 2020||Aug. 6, 2020||Municipal Service Center; field work southwest, northwest and central|
|Aug. 25, 2020||Aug. 21, 2020||Municipal Service Center; city field work in northwest, northeast, southeast and central|
|Aug. 27, 2020||Aug. 12, 2020||City facilities and city field work in northwest|
Copy of Most Recent Notice