Human Resources

COVID-19 Paid Leave

In accordance with Public Act 102-0697, the University is administering a COVID-19 Paid Leave program. Provisions in part A of this policy will allow eligible faculty and staff to have returned to their leave benefit balances any sick, vacation, compensatory time, or personal days used during the Fiscal Year 2022 (7/01/21-6/30/22) for absences related to qualifying COVID-19 reasons.

Beginning April 5, 2022, eligible individuals employed with Western Illinois University may qualify for COVID-19 Paid Leave for absences related to qualifying COVID-19 reasons. Provisions in part B of this policy will apply during any time the Governor has declared a disaster due to a public health emergency pursuant to Section 7 of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency Act and the University, the State or any of its agencies, or a local public health department has issued guidance, mandates, or rules related to COVID-19 that restrict an employee of the University from being on University property due to the qualifying reasons listed below in part B.

Eligibility for COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave

  • Employees are not automatically eligible for COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave.
  • Employees must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible:
  1. Employees who are employed with Western Illinois University and who are unable to work or telework (if employer approved) for one of the reasons listed below:
    1. The employee has received a positive COVID-19 diagnosis via a PCR test or a probable COVID-19 diagnosis via an antigen diagnostic test and must isolate in accordance with Illinois Department of Public Health guidance.
    2. The employee has been deemed by the local health department to be a close contact of a person who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 and is required to quarantine in accordance with Illinois Department of Public Health guidance.
    3. The employee was required by University policy to be excluded from University property due to COVID-19 symptoms.
    4. The employee must care for a child who is unable to attend elementary or secondary school or daycare because the child must be isolated or quarantine from others because the child has:
      1. A confirmed positive COVID-19 diagnosis via a PCR test or a probable COVID-19 diagnosis via an antigen diagnostic test, or
      2. Been in close contact with a person who has a confirmed case of COVID-19, or
      3. Been required by the school or school district policy to be excluded from school district property due to COVID-19 symptoms
    AND
  2. The employee either:
    1. Provides evidence of a positive COVID-19 test result, and proof that they are fully vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration.
      1. "Fully vaccinated against COVID-19" means at least two weeks have passed after receiving the second dose in a 2-dose series of a COVID-19 vaccine or at least two weeks have passed after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine that requires only a single dose.
      2. COVID -19 boosters may be recommended by the CDC for certain individuals, and are required by the CDC to be considered "up-to-date" on COVID-19 Vaccinations, however boosters are not required to be considered "fully vaccinated" for purposes of the COVID-19 paid leave policy.
      OR
    2. Provides evidence of a positive COVID-19 test result, and evidence that they have a medical or religious COVID-19 vaccination accommodation on file through the Office of Equal Opportunity and Access at the time of leave and were/are fully in compliance with all requirements of the accommodation.

Duration of Paid Leave

An employee eligible for leave under the provisions of this policy shall receive COVID-19 Paid Leave at their regular rate of pay for as many days as required to abide by public health guidance, mandates, and requirements issued by the Illinois Department of Public Health and Western Illinois University.

COVID-19 Paid Leave does not accrue and is not compensable upon separation from the University.

Leave Increment

COVID-19 Paid Leave may be used on a continuous basis. A reduced schedule may be approved with agreement from the employee’s department.

Application Procedure and Documentation Requirements

In order to be eligible for this paid leave, employees must complete the application for COVID-19 Paid Leave usage and send it to HR-Benefits@wiu.edu within 3 working days of the start of the paid leave.

Suitable documentation must be provided to support the need for COVID-19 Paid Leave usage. If an employee is found to have falsified the need for leave, the employee may be denied the leave and/or may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

COVID-19 Paid Leave will not be granted without proof of vaccination status or evidence of a granted accommodation and full compliance.

Appeal

If you have been denied leave and choose to appeal, please forward your written appeal to the Chief Human Resource Officer in Sherman Hall 105 within fifteen days from the date of your denial.