COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
Use these resources to help you understand what we’re doing to keep employees healthy and safe, as well as how this impacts areas like healthcare, medical costs and coverage, attendance, leave and more.
Employee Health and Safety
What can I do to protect myself and my family from the virus? (US and Canada)
- Stay informed: follow CDC guidelines and World Health Organization guidelines. Additionally, each State may have a State-specific pandemic planning resources for regional updates.
- Follow CDC guidelines for hygiene practices that help prevent exposure, including covering coughs and sneezes, frequent hand-washing and cleaning commonly used surfaces daily.
- Practice social distancing – keep farther than 6ft. away from others as much as possible.
What if I’m sick or think I may have been exposed to COVID-19? (US and Canada)
You are required to self-report to HR AND self-quarantine for 14 days if you’ve:
- Been diagnosed with or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19*
- Been advised by a health care provider to seek COVID-19 testing or to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19
- Travelled to afflicted areas designated as high risk by the CDC
- Been in close contact with people who are symptomatic or had known exposure to infected individuals
* Persons diagnosed with COVID-19 will not be allowed to return to the workplace until they have medically recovered and are certified to return to work.
In addition, please follow CDC Guidelines and:
- Stay home when you are sick and call your doctor if you think you have been exposed
- Separate yourself from other people in your home
On-site Control and Prevention - Keeping Employees Safe
What steps are being taken to protect employees in our facilities? (US and Canada)
We’re taking proactive steps to ensure employee health and safety, including:
- Implementing additional, rigorous facility cleaning procedures at all locations
- Working supply chain channels to increase the availability of anti-bacterial wipes, hand sanitizers and other cleaning materials
- Keeping you Informed of best practices to promote your continued health
- Encouraging social distancing (maintaining a distance of six feet away from others as much as possible)
What can I do if I think I’ve been exposed, but I’m not enrolled in the Company’s health insurance?
You can see a doctor virtually through MD Live. You’ll be charged a flat fee, regardless of insurance coverage. Any employee can use this digital service whether you are insured by Cornerstone Building Brands health benefits coverage or not.
I’m concerned that I won’t have access to my prescription medications. What are my options?
CVS Caremark is encouraging prescription holders to refill maintenance medications with a 90-day supply or up to the plan maximum to ensure continued access. They are also temporarily waiving early refill limits on 30-day prescriptions and offering free home delivery for all prescription medications.
How are we monitoring visitors to our facility locations? (US and Canada)
All visitors to our facilities are required to sign and date a visitor log that includes questions about COVID-19. Those who indicate exposure to COVID-19 should be turned away from entering the location out of consideration for the health and safety of our employees. Those who chose not to sign the questionnaire or do not answer the health questions are provided alternatives to leave deliveries while adhering to CDC’s social distancing guidelines.
Should we be wearing medical masks or respirators at work? (US and Canada)
According to WHO guidance, only people treating those infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus need to wear medical face masks. Employees may choose to wear a mask to work, unless wearing a mask in your particular job imposes an unacceptable safety risk. Please consult your local safety personnel if you have questions.
Is there a company travel ban? (US and Canada)
In addition to following CDC guidance for banned travel, we’re also restricting travel within our business. Any travel involving flights and/or hotel stays requires approval by our CEO until further notice.
What if a customer wants me to travel? (US and Canada)
Our priority is on your safety. Talk to your manager about requests from customers and whether it makes sense to postpone travel plans. Note that the above travel restrictions and requirements still apply. Customers will likely understand if virtual meetings are held in the place of face-to-face meetings.
Telecommuting and Special Workplace Considerations
If I’m unable to come to work and can safely work at home, am I allowed to work remotely? (US and Canada)
Some individuals and/or teams may choose, or be asked, to work remotely to avoid getting sick and/or risk exposure and to ensure business continuity.
If my kids’ schools are closed or I need to take care of a sick family member, can I work from home?
We understand that the closing of schools and childcare facilities may impact your ability to work as normal. Before making any decisions, work with your local leadership to see what options are being considered for your location. Generally, employees have three options if unable to work:
- Telecommute if your job is conducive to remote work
- Use available sick or vacation paid time off
- Take an unpaid leave of absence (including FMLA in the event you are taking care of a sick family member and the situation qualifies for FMLA leave)
Some States may offer additional family leave benefits or similar leave benefits (paid or unpaid) to care for a sick family member or related to childcare duties under State or local laws.
May I bring my child to work? (US and Canada)
You are not permitted to bring your children to work. We are encouraging employees to exercise every precaution and follow CDC guidance which currently includes social distancing.
Medical Costs and Coverage
Will Cornerstone Building Brands waive my monthly medical premiums if I'm unable to work?
If you’re unable to work, your Medical Benefit deductions will pause until you return. Deductions will be taken retroactively when you return to work. Generally, deductions will be doubled until you are caught up.
Is COVID-19 covered under my medical plan? What do I do if I get sick and what will they pay?
The medical plans will cover COVID-19 as they do any other illness and are subject to plan deductibles and copays unless excepted by law. Upon enactment, the Federal Families First Coronavirus Recovery Act authorizes the waiver of deductible, copayment, and coinsurance requirements for COVID-19 testing and certain other items and services furnished to an individual during health care provider office visits, urgent care visits, and emergency room visits that result in COVID-19 testing.
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Am I covered by FMLA or ADA/ADAAA if I must stay home because my child doesn't have school?
Neither the FMLA nor ADA/ADAAA apply to child day care need but you may be eligible for a non-FMLA leave of absence.
If I have short-term disability benefits and am absent from work due to COVID-19, will the benefits apply? What if I'm not sick but a family member is?
You would need to meet the definition of disability in order to qualify for a claim and it would be treated as any other sickness or illness. The return to work date would be based on the disability and not the return to work date based on the employer or the government.
Sick Leave and Attendance
I have sick and/or vacation time available. Do I have to use it if I'm required to stay home and can’t work remotely?
You are not required to use paid time off but are permitted to do so. Paid sick leave may only be used according to the criteria set out in the policy.
I’ve heard that companies can provide emergency paid leave to employees through the ‘Families First Coronavirus Response Act’. Does this apply to our company and employees?
The emergency paid family leave and paid sick leave provisions of the ‘Families First Coronavirus Response Act’ (FFCRA) apply to employers with fewer than 500 employees; that does not apply to Cornerstone Building Brands. You may use available vacation and sick time and may be eligible for other paid and unpaid benefits provided by the Company and under existing State or local programs. Please contact your HR representative to discuss your situation.
Will unpaid absences due to school closures have a negative impact on my attendance?
No. Your attendance points will not be negatively impacted for absences resulting from to COVID-19.
What happens to my attendance points if I'm off for more than three days but don't have a doctor's note?
Your attendance points will not be negatively impacted for absences resulting from to COVID-19.
If I can’t come to work due to the virus and am unable to work remotely, will I continue to get paid?
You may use available paid time off and may be eligible to receive short-term disability benefits. You may also be eligible for other paid leave benefits under existing State or local programs. Please contact your HR representative to discuss your situation.
Is the company planning to lay-off or furlough employees if we don’t have enough work?
While we continue to have strong demand for our products, this pandemic is changing the business environment for all companies, including introducing the potential of government-mandated workplace closures. Our ultimate goal is to provide a healthy and stable workplace for our employees well into the future and we’re committed to keeping a realistic view on all possibilities so we’re equipped to do so. If you have any questions, submit them using the form at the bottom of this page.
What happens if a state or local government order requires my facility to close?
If the Company determines that your facility must be closed due to federal, state or local municipality orders, employees who cannot work remotely will be furloughed. During that time, employees can elect to use available paid time off and will not have any disruption to their healthcare coverage. In the event of a furlough, your manager will provide you with detailed information related to the specific situation at your facility. You may be asked to complete certain paperwork in order to receive paid time and continue your healthcare coverage. Your local HR representative will also be a resource in this situation.
What happens if I don’t feel safe coming to work because of Covid-19?
If you don’t feel comfortable coming to work at this time, you are eligible to take a personal leave of absence. During this leave, you can elect to use available paid time off. Once your paid time off is exhausted, you can continue your leave unpaid. Before you make this decision please speak with your manager to see if your concerns can be addressed. You should contact your local HR representative to learn more about the unpaid leave of absence.
Can I use vacation and/or leave balances for missed work as a result of the virus?
You are permitted, but not required, to use available paid time off.
If I'm not able to work or my hours are reduced, can I file for unemployment?
Yes. Recent changes to federal law allow States to pay benefits where:
- An employer temporarily ceases operations due to COVID-19, preventing employees from coming to work;
- An individual is quarantined with the expectation of returning to work after the quarantine is over; and
- An individual leaves employment due to a risk of exposure or infection or to care for a family member.
Employees should refer to their individual State’s unemployment compensation website for more information about eligibility and how to apply for unemployment benefits.
Who do I call with questions?
You are welcome to contact the Employee Service Center by submitting a question using the form at the bottom of this site. We’re here to help and if we don’t have the answer, we will find someone who does.
If I apply for unemployment, does that mean I can’t use my paid sick or vacation time?
Because these rules vary by state, we recommend you check with the workforce commission in your state.
Who can I talk to about how this is impacting me and my family?
You and your family have access the Employee Assistance Program offered through Magellan. The EAP provides a confidential service of counseling, coaching, resources and referrals for many personal needs. They are available online at magellanascend.com or by phone at 1-800-324-8780
FMLA and ADA/ADAAA Considerations
Does family and medical leave apply to this situation?
Yes, if you are eligible and have a covered situation. FMLA does not typically cover leave due to the avoidance of getting sick.
Is COVID-19 an ADA/ADAAA qualifying illness?
Whether COVID-19 or a condition associated with it is a disability under the ADA/ADAAA, will be determined on a case by case basis. However, most transitory conditions, like the flu, are usually not considered a “disability” unless there are additional or long-lasting complications.
Have Additional Questions?
If you have any questions or need support, please complete the below form to initiate help from the appropriate team member.