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NASA HQ Headquarters Operating Status, COVID-19 Stage 3 (as of April 6, 2020)

Status Report From: NASA HQ
Posted: Monday, April 6, 2020

NASA's Leadership's top priority is protecting the health and safety of our workforce and ensuring the well-being of every employee. In addition to the Agency NASA People site, we have established this HQ Operating Status webpage to provide timely and pertinent information to NASA Headquarters employees on the Operating Status of the Headquarters Building and Services as we work through this difficult time. We invite our civil servants, contractors, interns, and students to check back regularly for updates.

Continue to refer to NASA People for information and resources provided by the Agency and Coronavirus.gov for the latest CDC guidelines. Critical updates also will be disseminated by email. Please maintain regular contact with your supervisor.

Security:

The Security Office is operating with a Modified Weekend/Holiday schedule. The operating status means that the West Lobby entrance is open. Employees can access the building unless they are exhibiting signs of being sick. In such cases, a medical determination is made by the HQ Chief Health and Medical Officer.

Employees are allowed into the building to retrieve personal and work items needed during this period of mandatory telework. For IT equipment, supervisors need to send an email to Darline Brown to approve of the employee taking specified IT equipment home for telework usage.

Building access will be stricter if/when HQ moves to COVID-19 Stage 4. 

The badging office is open on Monday and Thursday. Employees whose badges are expiring are receiving appointment notices through email informing them of the date and time to come in for a new badge. If employees are having badge issues, they can email Antoinette Ford-Miller to request an appointment.

POC: Jonathan Pirkey, Interim Director, HQ Protective Services Division
 

East Lobby: 

The East Lobby is closed effective March 18.  East Lobby elevators turned off and door to grand hallway locked. The Grand Café and "Weigh and Pay" Buffet are both closed.

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

West Lobby: 

The doors on the westernmost side are locked.  The doors in front of the Guard Desk are open to those that can badge into the building. Non-essential visitors will be refused entry.

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Visitor Traffic: 

Suspended as of COB March 17.

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Parking Garage: 

The Garage is closed effective March 17  except for those with badge-in privileges.  No charge for parking during the mandatory telework period.  Employees who already purchase parking hangtags for the next quarter's stickers will receive a credit on a prorated basis once we return to normal operations.  Employees who have not purchased next quarter stickers will have two weeks to do so (at a prorated cost) once normal operations resume. 

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Mail/Shipping/Receiving: 

Mail and package delivery via USPS, FEDEX, and UPS continue to be received at the HQ Building during COVID-19 Stage 3.  Received mail and packages are being held at the Mailroom and Receiving room on the 1st floor.  Representatives from directorates, offices, other organizations may send a representative to the HQ Building to pick up these items, Monday through Friday, 8 am – noon.  Please call ahead to see if you have mail before making the trip:  Mailroom is at 202-358-0199; Receiving is at 202-358-0196.

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Library: 

The Library closed to the public on March 16.  Contractor librarians and archivists will telework, responding to general inquiries and research requests, weeding stacks, and other appropriate work. The Information Center will remain operational for incoming calls/emails. 

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Employee Store: 

The HQ Exchange Council closed the store on March 16.

POC: Leah Hollander, Headquarters Exchange Council
 

Credit Union: 

HQ Branch is closed, effective March 18, with the Agency's shift to COVID-19 Stage 3. 

POC: David Burdick, Director, Support Services Division
 

Health Unit: 

HQ Health Unit remains staffed and open during regular business hours.  Employees may reach out to the office about any COVID-19 questions. 

The George Washington Hospital, United Medical Center, Kaiser, and DC MedStar are opening up drive-thru COVID-19 Testing. Employees need a Doctor's note to be tested, but health care workers do not.

Safety and Occupational Health ergonomic flyer for working safely at home is available. The NASA Safety Center and Office of Chief Medical Officer have also developed a Home Safe Website for all of NASA.  It can be found here https://nsc.nasa.gov/topics/telework-safety?utm_source=Teleworking&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=New+Resources+While+Teleworking

For more information resources and tools to support employees while working virtually, employees can visit the site below.  Please note that some of the links on the Office Chief Health and Medical Officer site can only be accessed via vpn.

https://nasapeople.nasa.gov/coronavirus/  

https://www.nasa.gov/offices/ochmo/telework/index.html

POC:  Christopher Warren, Headquarters Safety and Occupational Health Program Manager
 

Fitness Center: 

The Fitness Center closed on Monday, March 16. 

HQ Fitness Center is providing online training and communicating with members several times a week with daily health and fitness challenges.  Also, meeting with members via teams for Q&A, support, etc.  Members are using Microsoft teams to post selfies, goals, and accomplishments with their counterparts to minimalize social isolation while maintaining effective social distancing.  The Fitness Center Website is being updated, and they are working on desk-side exercises for everyone. 

Key updates are below:

  • The staff has created a NASA HQ Fitness Center Microsoft Teams group.  Please join us to stay connected!  They have also created a unique Microsoft Teams group for the Sizzlers, called NASA HQ Sizzlers. 

  • Maria Werries is continuing her Zumba classes via pre-recorded videos during her normal Zumba class times of Tuesdays at 12:00pm and Thursdays at 1:00pm.  She created a NASA HQ Zumba Fitness Microsoft Teams group. 

  • For mindfulness meditation, Anthony Buonomo has created an HQ 2pm Wednesday Meditation Microsoft Teams group.  He will continue meditation starting today from 2:00pm to 2:30pm.  GSFC also has a meditation group on Tuesdays from 12-12:30pm, and their Microsoft Team is Meditation "public" Meeting. 

  • JSC partners with Les Mills for their classes, which provides group exercise formats to most major commercial fitness centers.  JSC has kindly shared the free online site of Les Mills classes for HQ members to utilize.  Classes range from formats that require equipment to those that do not, like cardio, yoga, and boxing:  https://watch.lesmillsondemand.com/at-home-workouts

  • NASA MOVES:  The agency annual fitness challenge was originally slated to begin on April 17.  The program has been moved to May 2 through May 29.  At this time, it will continue as scheduled for May.  Now would be a great time to start forming your HQ teams (2 to 20 per team), and think about creative ways to increase your physical activity while we are all staying home.

  • Lunch & Learns:  Our in-person lunch and learn seminars are temporarily on hold.  However, we are working diligently to schedule some webinar formats moving forward.  Stay tuned for topics and dates!

  • Weight Watchers Classes at NASA HQ:  The Fitness Center is working with WW to maintain online workshops for the next session.  Please stay on the look-out for updates in Heads Up.

  • Yoga Classes:  Yoga classes are on hold until HQ returns to normal operations.  In the meantime, check out the Body Flow and meditation classes on the Les Mills website from JSC listed above.

  • Stress Awareness Month:  This is definitely a unique and stressful time, so please take time to unwind – relax, renew, and rejuvenate.  Work demands, financial pressures, family concerns, and many other things can cause stress. Luckily, there is a low-cost, fast-acting and highly effective treatment available. It's called "relaxation," and the directions are simple:  for maximum effectiveness, use as often as needed.  Go to Federal Occupational Health's Stress Awareness page (https://foh.psc.gov/calendar/stress.html) to find tips on deep relaxation and meditation.  Whether you re-invigorate yourself through exercise, reading, playing with a pet, or meditation, for your health's sake, make sure you tackle your stress head-on and… take time to unwind!

POC: Christopher Warren, Headquarters Safety and Occupational Health Program Manager​


Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Counseling: 

EAP remains available, and there has not been an uptake in usage.

The EAP is a resource that offers free, confidential evaluation, short-term counseling, and referral services to Headquarters civil service employees and their families. An EAP counselor is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and can be reached by calling 1-800-222-0364. You can use this number to contact NASA's EAP counselor Tracy Corpening.  Tracy is working virtually on Tuesday and Thursdays, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm. Emp

Employees are reminded that addressing issues when they are small is ideal rather than waiting until it feels like an overwhelming problem.  Key indicators to look for include:  sleeplessness, loss of appetite, irritability, and to remember that social distancing does not mean social isolation.

Employees can speak with the EAP Counselor without having to use sick or annual leave.

POC:  Christopher Warren, Headquarters Safety and Occupational Health Program Manager
 

Mass Transit: 

There is no change to monthly subsidy payments for April.  Users are reminded that subsidies are for official use only, not for personal use during mandatory telework.  Subsidies may be discontinued involuntarily if NASA HQ moves to COVID-19 Stage 4, except for those allowed access to the building for essential functions.   

EMPLOYEES THAT USE TRANSIT ALLOCATION (VRE/MARC):  Transit Allocation is an "employee only" feature. It lets employees use their SmarTrip account to allocate their transit benefit to a vanpool, VRE, MARC, MTA Commuter Bus, or MetroAccess. Two things to remember: 1) The personal transit allocation deadline is the 21st, and 2) If an employee reduces their personal Commuter Direct allocation, he/she will need to log-in to their Commuter Direct account to turn off their "recurring" pass order.  There is no intent to stop the government portion of this subsidy each month.

EMPLOYEES THAT USE THE TRANSIT PASS BENEFIT:  No tap, no charge. An employee's transit pass benefit is charged only when a Metro or regional partner pass is loaded to their SmarTrip card. If the employee does not tap a SmarTrip target in the Metro station, then the pass cannot load to their card, even if their pass is set for Auto Reload. For example, if an employee has a monthly unlimited pass set for auto-reload and did not tap their card between 3/24 and 4/15, then an April pass will not load, and they will not be charged.

Employees can learn more about the possibility of COVID-19 pass refunds at wmata.com/fares.

Contact: Rose Butler, HQ Mass Transit Subsidy, Program Manager
 

HQ Information Technology and Communication Updates:

Employees should refer to the ITCD notice issues on March 27 for tips on how to improve internet/meeting collaboration experience (e.g., closing out of unnecessary apps, deactivating video capability when hosting meetings with 10 or more participants). 

The HITSS help desk and Adobe Connect teams are available to assist employees in resolving issues and providing over the phone and virtual meeting usage tips.

Instant meeting numbers are available for employees. In addition to the 844 Instant Meeting number, the Agency has added another 720 lines to minimize the current simultaneous capacity/saturation issues.

Employees are encouraged to call in 10 minutes earlier and to schedule meetings on the quarter or half-hour.

Employees experiencing VPN Connection spottiness (i.e., inability to connect or dropped connections) are instructed to switch from the North-east VPN option to the second VPN option (South-east) when connection issues are persistent.

IT Support is being provided as follows:

  • IT Technicians are using system software to resolve issues remotely.
  • Technicians are on-site daily, working at reduced on-site hours.
  • IT Walk-Up support area for essential mission personnel is available (no appointment required).
  • Appointments are available for non-mission essential personnel for break/fix and work stoppage situations requiring hands-on remediation by technicians.
  • In cases where appointments or remote remediation is not possible, the shipment of replacement equipment to the mission and non-mission essential personnel is being arranged.

If employees have any of the following HP Laptop Models listed below and are experiencing battery issues, they should contact the HITSS Help Desk.

  • HP ELITEBOOK 1030 G2 - UP2 (I7-7600+16GB+512GB SSD+UHD)
  • HP ELITEBOOK 1030 G2
  • HP EliteBook 840 G3
  • HP EliteBook 840 G4
  • HP EliteBook 850 G3
  • HP EliteBook 850 G4
  • HP Elite x2 1012 G1

PIV Card/Badge Credential Exemptions-Existing employees are requesting/requiring PIV exemptions due to their badges not working or lost. The OCIO has extended PIV exemptions from 3 days to 30 days to allow users to remedy their issue and to continue their NASA work.

IT Support for Off-Boarding and On-Boarding- Please contact the HQ Human Resources Office of Office of Protective Services.

POC: Victor Thompson, Information and Technology Communications Director or HQ HITSS Help Desk
 

Handling New Reasonable Accommodations

Managers should continue to provide reasonable accommodations for known limitations of employees with disabilities, even during a pandemic requiring employees to telework.

Effective immediately and until further notice, in-person intake has been temporarily stopped. These services will now be performed telephonically or by email. Employees may request a reasonable accommodation orally or in writing by completing and submitting NASA Form (NF) 1699 to their immediate supervisor or the Headquarters Disability Program Manager, Felicia Toney, through email at hq-reasonable-accommodations@mail.nasa.gov.

Once a request for accommodation is made, the core component of the process is an interactive discussion between the employee and the employee's supervisor to determine accommodations that can enable the employee to perform the essential functions of the job.

The office will NOT accept walk-ins at this time.

POCs: Felicia Toney, Disability Program Manager, and LaShawn McDuffie, Special Emphasis Program Manager
 

EEO Complaint Processing

The physical safety and EEO rights of NASA's workforce, its contractors, and applicants are of the utmost importance. In light of the national emergency, the Headquarters Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity is implementing telework procedures.  This step allows the HQ ODEO to continue to provide advice and assistance while taking measures to keep its employees and the public safe.

Effective immediately and until further notice in-person intake and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Counseling has temporarily stopped. These services will now be performed telephonically or by email.

The office will NOT accept walk-ins at this time.

POCs:  Crystal Moten, Director HQ Office Diversity and Equal Opportunity and Whitney Proctor, Complaints Manager
 

HQ Human Resources Office:

For any HQ Human Resource Office needs including Onboarding, Off-boarding, Hiring, Learning, Performance Management, Employee Relations, Labor Relations, please contact Veronica Marshall, Director, Human Resources Office
 

HQ Procurement Office:

For any questions or concerns about HQ contract-related matters, please contact Delia Robey, Associate Chief, Headquarters Procurement Office.
 

Webtads and Budget Information:

For any webtads or budget-related questions, please contact Robert Carver, Director, Resources, and Performance Management Office.

For any Headquarters Employee Engagement questions or suggestions, please contact Nichole Pinkney, Assistant Director, Office of Headquarters Operations, (202) 358-3768.

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