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COVID-19 Communicable Disease Policy (CDP)

For Employees and Guests at the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center

Updated as of July 8, 2020

Introduction

  • As of June 6, 2020, Governor Ned Lamont announced new rules that came into effect for eligible businesses in Connecticut (the “June 6 Reopening Rules”) addressing Phase 2 of reopening during the COVID-19 pandemic, which began on June 17, 2020. The June 6 Reopening Rules address, among others, guidance for hotels and lodging, restaurants, outdoor events and sports and fitness facilities.
  • This document sets forth the polices of the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center (“Isabella Freedman”) for complying with the June 6 Reopening Rules.
  • The policies in this document are in effect as of June 17 until further notice. Hazon will continue to monitor developments surrounding COVID-19 in Connecticut and make adjustments as appropriate, including for any changes in legal guidance.
  • All references to “guests” in this CDP shall include participants in the “Isabella Freedman Getaways” program, participants in the Adamah Fellowship and individuals, families and groups that rent accommodations at Isabella Freedman. All references to “employees” in this CDP shall include all part-time and full-time employees of Hazon, as well as volunteers and independent contractors who are working at Isabella Freedman.

General Polices

Screening for COVID-19

  • All individuals arriving at the retreat center for the first time will undergo COVID-19 screening as part of the check-in/orientation process, which will take place before these individuals are permitted to access their residence. This screening will be administered by the Retreat Manager on duty.
  • This screening will involve:
    • Temperature Checks
    • Questionnaires regarding recent COVID-19 symptoms or exposure to COVID-19. The questionnaire will, at a minimum, ask whether, within the preceding 14 days, the individual or any of his or her co-habitants have:
      • travelled to active COVID-19 hot spots, as defined by the most recent CDC travel guidance;
      • exhibited any COVID-19 symptoms; or
      • been exposed to confirmed or presumed cases of COVID-19.
    • PLEASE NOTE that individuals who demonstrate symptoms of COVID-19, who were recently exposed to confirmed or presumed cases of COVID-19, or who recently traveled to active COVID-19 hot spots will not be permitted to stay at Isabella Freedman until they complete a 14-day quarantine following the instance of symptoms or exposure.
      • To avoid being turned away, please confirm that you and your group have not demonstrated symptoms or been exposed to confirmed cases in the past 14 days before travelling to Isabella Freedman for your stay.
    • Throughout their time at Isabella Freedman, employees and guests are expected to self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.
      • In the event that an employee or guest suspects that he/she/they may be exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, this individual should report immediately to their supervisor or the Retreat Manager on duty, respectively.

Social Distancing and Hygiene

  • Employees and guests are required to spread out to maintain appropriate social distancing (i.e., a minimum of 6 feet of space between individuals who are not in the same group) at all times while at Isabella Freedman, including while performing tasks or participating in activities.
    • This requirement should be followed at all times, but is especially important in indoor spaces.
    • For the purposes of social distancing, being in a “group” applies only to guests who are sharing a residence at Isabella Freedman. Employees are never considered to be in a group, and are required to maintain a minimum of 6 feet of  distance between themselves and all other people, including other employees who perform the same tasks or work in the same designated area, whenever possible.
  • Employees and guests are required to wear masks at all times when they are indoors and in the company of other individuals who are not in their group.
    • This requirement applies regardless of whether social distancing is also being observed.
    • Employees and guests can remove their masks while eating in indoor dining areas, but only when seated at their table and only during the course of eating.
    • No guest or employee is required to wear a mask if doing so would be contrary to his or her safety because of a medical condition. Such guests and employees are encouraged to discuss alternative arrangements with Isabella Freedman to help ensure their safety while on campus.
  • All used disposable masks should be disposed of immediately following use by employees. Employees using reusable masks, such as cloth masks, should wash them properly (i.e. based on CDC guidance for washing close face coverings) and daily.
  • Isabella Freedman will supply all of its employees with appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (“PPE”), including masks, required for the performance of their job duties.
  • Guests are required to bring a sufficient amount of PPE, including multiple masks and/or appropriate face coverings, to cover their entire stay at Isabella Freedman.
  • Employees and guests should be conscious to avoid touching their masks and/or faces at all times.
  • Employees and guests should wash their hands properly (i.e., in accordance with CDC guidelines, which require hand washing to take at least 20 seconds) and frequently.
    • Handwashing and/or hand sanitizer stations will be placed throughout the retreat center, including in the following locations:
      • Near and around all dining service areas, eating areas and restrooms;
      • Entrances of any indoor public space that has been approved for guest use; and
      • All offices and staff restrooms.
    • Employees and guests should refrain from traditional contact-based forms of greeting (e.g., no handshakes) with other individuals.

Training and Orientation

  • Employees and guests will be trained on social distancing guidelines, the proper use of PPE, and proper hygiene and disinfecting techniques for preventing the spread of COVID-19 as part of their orientation.
    • Employees and guests are required to comply with these trainings at all times.
    • Training will also cover the uncertainties surrounding antibodies, and make clear that Isabella Freedman policies must be followed regardless of the results of antibody testing.
  • Employees who perform specific tasks for which additional training is necessary will be required to receive and comply with those trainings.
    • Housekeeping staff will receive specific training relating to deep cleaning and sanitization to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These trainings will follow applicable guidelines (e.g., from the CDC).
    • Food service staff will receive specific training relating to the PPE and hygiene practices that must be followed in the food service industry to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Isabella Freedman has posted signs throughout the campus to remind employees and guests of best practices and ensure compliance with these practices.
  • As part of their training or orientation, respectively, employees and guests will be provided with a copy of these guidelines. Guests will also be provided with an electronic version of these guidelines before they travel to the retreat center.
    • PLEASE NOTE that after being given an opportunity to review these guidelines, guests will be required to electronically sign a COVID-19 waiver through which they acknowledge Isabella Freedman’s efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19, agree to comply with all applicable rules, and expressly assume the risk of contracting COVID-19 while participating in a retreat.
    • Guests are required to sign this waiver before travelling to the retreat center.
    • Guests who do not wish to sign the waiver will not be permitted to come to or remain on campus.

Closures and Activity Limitations

  • The following locations will be closed and/or off-limits to guests and employees (other than those required to visit these locations as part of their job duties) during the COVID-19 pandemic due to safety concerns:
    • Staff offices
    • Sun room
    • Playground
    • Main building
      • Except for the Great Hall and Dining Hall, each of which will remain open at a maximum of 50% its normal capacity for dining purposes only. Guests and employees are also encouraged to use the outdoor dining tent as an alternative to indoor dining.
    • Library
      • Except that the library will be used for additional dining space, in the event that there is a need for such additional space given the capacity restrictions and layout changes in the Dining Hall.
    • All public restrooms
      • Except for those attached to the pool area, which will only be open for groups that are currently using this area. Guests are not allowed to use these restrooms at any other time.
      • Employees will be permitted to use the staff bathrooms located in the Main Building.
    • Farm locations, including:
      • Greenhouses
      • Barns
      • Produce washing and preparation areas
      • PLEASE NOTE that, in contrast to previous years, many of these areas where the farm employees need to work will be off-limits for guests at this time due to concerns over the farm employees’ health and safety. Isabella Freedman is currently considering ways in which guests can learn about the farm safely and without endangering employees, and will communicate with guests about those opportunities separately should they arise.
    • Any residence other than your assigned residence
    • Any other space that is indicated as off-limits by signs that say “Staff Only.”
  • The following locations will be open, subject to the following limitations:
    • Dining Hall
      • The Dining Hall will remain open at a maximum of 50% its normal capacity. Seating will be rearranged to facilitate social distancing between members of different groups.
      • Guests and employees are encouraged to use the outdoor dining tent as an alternative to indoor dining.
      • Housekeeping staff will thoroughly clean and disinfect the Dining Hall and outdoor dining tent between meals.
    • Pool
      • Maximum occupancy of the pool area will be limited to 10 individuals at a time, not including the lifeguard.
        • Guests are encouraged to communicate with other groups who would like to use the pool and coordinate their use so that everyone has an opportunity to use the pool area.
      • Social distancing between members of different groups must be followed at all times.
      • Pool hours will be posted each day. The pool may be closed at certain points during the day to allow for cleaning of the pool area.
      • Individuals using the pool are permitted to use the public bathrooms located in the pool area during such use, but should take extra care to observe proper hygiene procedures and avoid unnecessary contact with high-touch areas.
        • Note that the showers located in the pool area public bathrooms will be closed; guests should use the showers in their residence as an alternative.
      • In the event that a lifeguard is not available, the pool will not be open.
    • Lake
      • Given the size of the lake, restrictions on the number of people visiting the lake area simultaneously will not be established at this time.
      • However, guests are required to maintain an adequate distance from other groups who are using the lake at the same time, and stagger their use of the lake as needed to accomplish this.
      • Guests are encouraged to communicate and coordinate with other groups to prevent overcrowding of the lake area.
      • Please note that a lifeguard will not be available to monitor the lake.
      • Guests will be expected to wipe down any equipment provided by Isabella Freedman. Cleaning supplies will be provided.
    • Hiking Trails
      • Guests and employees using the hiking trails are required to maintain the appropriate distance at all times.
      • Masks should be brought on hikes, and must be worn in any instances where social distancing cannot be practiced.

Residential Considerations

  • Guests and employees are not permitted into any residential buildings or residences other than those to which they have been assigned.
  • Hazon is required to keep a log of guests and employees at Isabella Freedman to support contact tracing. Therefore, upon arriving or departing Isabella Freedman, all guests and employees are required to email tracing@hazon.org indicating when they arrived/departed and where they came from/where they are going.
  • PLEASE NOTE that housekeeping services will not be available during your stay, and that housekeepers will not be permitted to enter your residence during your stay.
    • To ensure guest and employee safety, Isabella Freedman will not place any new guests or employees in a residence until 48 hours have passed since the previous occupant has checked out. During this time, housekeeping staff will perform a deep cleaning of the residence to prepare the space for the new occupant.

Dining Considerations

  • As stated above, the Dining Hall will remain open at reduced capacity (not to exceed 50% of maximum capacity).
    • Should additional indoor dining space be required to safely accommodate guests and employees, the Library can be utilized as overflow dining space.
    • An outdoor dining tent will also be provided. Guests and employees are encouraged to use the outdoor dining tent as an alternative to indoor dining.
  • The layout of all dining areas will be rearranged to facilitate proper social distancing.
    • Guests and employees are required to follow social distancing guidelines during all meals, and are not allowed to rearrange the layout of any dining area in contravention of these rules.
  • Isabella Freedman will be placing social distancing markers in the food service area to direct one-way traffic and ensure that employees and guests follow social distancing guidelines.
    • Employees and guests are required to comply with social distancing markers and one-way traffic requirements.
  • Guests and employees will be required to eat at separate times to reduce unnecessary contact and allow for proper social distancing to be followed during meals.
  • Food service employees will be required to wear appropriate PPE, which includes both masks and gloves, at all times during the preparation and serving of meals.
  • To the extent possible, the food provided by Isabella Freedman will be individually packaged, single-serve items.
  • Guests and employees are required to observe the best hygiene practices outlined below for all meals. In particular, guests and employees are required to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds both before and after meals.
  • Trained housekeeping staff will be responsible for cleaning after meals, which will include sanitizing the dining areas between each meal and between employee and guest dining shifts.

Employee-Specific Policies

Who Can Be on Campus and When

  • Only scheduled employees whose presence has been deemed essential by Isabella Freedman should be on campus at any given time.
    • To facilitate contact tracing, upon arriving and departing Isabella Freedman, employees are required to email tracing@hazon.org indicating when they arrived/departed and where they came from/where they are going.
    • The number of scheduled employees will be kept to the minimum necessary for the proper functioning of the retreat center.
    • Shift start/stop times and break times for employees will be staggered to minimize contact between employees.
    • To the extent possible, employees will work only their assigned shifts and will avoid cross-over between shifts. Employees should minimize contact with employees on other shifts.
    • To the extent possible, employees should avoid contact with other employees who work in different areas of the retreat center or perform different tasks (e.g., food service employees should avoid contact with farm employees as much as possible).
  • Employees who have reason to think they may have had COVID-19 must:
    • Have completed a 14-day quarantine (beginning on the last day on which the employee exhibited symptoms).
    • Have negative test results before coming to campus and have met the criteria to end home isolation as instructed in consultation with healthcare providers and state and local health departments.
  • Commuter employees should only be on campus during their scheduled shift and should only be in their designated workplaces, designated dining/kitchen areas, designated restrooms, or their own vehicle.
  • Residential employees should only be in their designated place of work, designated dining/kitchen areas, their residence, or their own vehicle.
  • Hiking trails are open to employees and guests only.

Employee Communication

  • All employees working or living on campus will be kept aware of who is coming and going at all times to ensure guest safety and to facilitate contact tracing.
    • The Retreat Manager on duty will be responsible for maintaining an up-to-date list of the employees and guests currently on campus. The Retreat Manager on duty will also notify employees of anticipated arrivals and departures each day.
    • In the event of an unexpected arrival, the Retreat Manager on duty will be responsible for learning the nature of the visit and recording contact information for the individual.
      • If the visit is non-essential, or the unexpected arrival does not have appropriate PPE to ensure guest and employee safety, the unexpected arrival will be turned away.
      • If the visit is essential, the unexpected arrival will be informed of the COVID-19 Communicable Disease Policy, including the requirements regarding PPE use while on campus and any applicable restrictions to the areas the unexpected arrival needs to visit.
        • The unexpected arrival will be required to sign the COVID-19 waiver before entering campus.
        • The Retreat Manager on duty will also be responsible for updating the daily occupants list and informing employees of the unexpected arrival.
      • Employees are required to inform the Retreat Manager on duty if they become aware of any unrecorded visitors currently on campus.
    • If resources permit, employees will be assigned individual walkie talkies to facilitate communication between staff members.
      • If individual walkie talkies are assigned, employees must not share walkie talkies with other employees.
      • If walkie talkies will be shared, employees must use disinfectant wipes before using the device and again before placing it in the charger at end of day.
    • To the extent they do not allow for social distancing, staff meetings will be held virtually or telephonically.

Social Distancing and Hygiene Guidelines

  • Employees should monitor other employees and guests for proper social distancing and remind them of social distancing requirements as needed.
  • Employees who require tools or equipment to perform their job duties should, to the extent possible, only use their own equipment and avoid sharing equipment with coworkers.
    • Employees are also required to disinfect any tools they use at the end of each day.
    • Hazon vehicles must also be disinfected at the end of each day and between uses by different employees. The door handles (interior & exterior), steering wheel, shifter lever, signal light lever, dash, and all other areas where bodily contact may be made will be wiped with disinfectant wipes.
      • Only one employee at a time is permitted to be in a Hazon vehicle unless necessary for their job duties.
    • Employees are permitted to use the bathrooms in the Main Building, the Main Office, and Arts & Crafts. These bathrooms will be available only to members of the staff.

Materials Provided by Isabella Freedman

  • Lunch for all employees will be “on their own,” meaning that employees are responsible for providing their own food for lunch.
    • There are 3 refrigerators available to employees: One in each of the Maintenance office, Main Office, and Laundry Building.
  • The following PPE will be provided to all employees:
    • Facemask for personal use.
      • When not in use, masks may be stored in a brown paper bag and must be kept on the person.
    • Rubber gloves.
      • Non-medical rubber gloves (2 Pairs) will be issued, with more available as needed.
    • Hand sanitizer will be made available, as well as soap for frequent hand washing.

Leaving Campus

  • As stated above, employees departing the Isabella Freedman campus are required to email tracing@hazon.org to support contact tracing.
  • Residential employees who travel away from Isabella Freedman for essential errands should continue to follow the safety guidelines outlined above while off-site. In particular:
    • Masks should be worn at all times when entering into a place of business.
    • Appropriate social distancing should be observed whenever possible.
    • Proper hygiene must be observed before the employee leaves campus and after they return from their errands. Employees should bring hand sanitizer with them in their personal vehicle and use it frequently, including in particular after returning to the vehicle after entering another place of business.
  • Commuter employees should similarly follow the above safety guidelines while they are off-site. In particular:
    • The guidelines relating to residential employees running errands should also be followed by commuter employees running errands while off-site.
  • If an employee is exposed to an infected or symptomatic individual while off-site, the employee must:
    • Promptly inform the Retreat Manager on duty and their supervisor as soon as possible.
    • Avoid returning to campus until the employee can confirm through COVID-19 testing that they are not infected.
      • In the event that the employee requires personal belongings that were left at Isabella Freedman, they should not return to collect them, but rather inform their supervisor or the Retreat Manager on duty, who can arrange for delivery.
    • To the extent possible, avoid close contact with others until negative test results are obtained.

Plans for Infected Individuals

  • Employees and guests are required to promptly inform their supervisor or the Retreat Manager on duty, respectively, as soon as possible if they begin exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.
  • The supervisor or the Retreat Manager on duty should immediately:
    • Inform the appropriate members of Isabella Freedman management of the potentially positive case.
    • Have the symptomatic person list all areas of the Isabella Freedman campus that they visited in the last 14 days.
    • Have the symptomatic person list all individuals with whom he or she was in close contact over the last 14 days. Inform all listed individuals of their potential exposure without disclosing personally identifiable information of the symptomatic person, and recommend that these individuals take additional precautions (e.g., use of mask and gloves at all times, avoiding participation in unnecessary activities) and self-monitor for symptoms for a period of 14 days.
      • The supervisor or Retreat Manager on duty should also ask the symptomatic person to consider community/family members with whom they were in close contact over the last 14 days and suggest that they inform those people of their potential exposure.
    • If the symptomatic person is an employee, temporarily close the employee’s work area(s) until a deep cleaning can be performed.
    • Coordinate with housekeeping staff to perform a deep cleaning of the symptomatic person’s residence, work area(s), and any other affected areas which the symptomatic person visited in the last 14 days. Housekeeping staff should dispose of any PPE used by the symptomatic person.
  • The symptomatic person should be sent home as soon as possible.
    • In the event that the person’s symptoms make it difficult for them to operate their personal vehicle, their supervisor or the Retreat Manager on duty should arrange for the necessary transportation services to get the symptomatic person home.
      • The symptomatic person should be made aware of this option regardless of the severity of their symptoms.
    • The symptomatic person should self-quarantine at home for a period of 14 days, or until they are able to obtain negative COVID-19 test results. In any event, the symptomatic person will not be able to return to the Isabella Freedman campus until they are able to obtain negative test results.
    • The supervisor or Retreat Manager on duty should remain in contact with the symptomatic person during their self-quarantine and periodically check on their health.
  • Isabella Freedman should inform all guests and employees staying on campus, as well as those who were on campus in the previous 14 days, of the potential positive case of COVID-19 without disclosing personally identifiable information of the symptomatic person, and should reemphasize the need for all employees and guests to comply with Isabella Freedman’s COVID-19 policies.
    • Isabella Freedman should also inform guests and employees when the cleaning procedures have been completed and areas are reopened.
  • In the event that multiple individuals report symptoms or a COVID-19 outbreak is suspected:
    • All non-essential employees and guests will be sent home immediately.
      • They will be encouraged to take the additional precautions outlined above for potentially exposed individuals and to self-monitor for symptoms.
      • No one will be permitted back onto the Isabella Freedman campus until they obtain negative COVID-19 test results.
    • The Isabella Freedman campus will be closed to the public until a thorough deep cleaning of the entire campus can be completed.