Blog-Covid-Update-450x325As California begins to lift pandemic restrictions, our Habitat community – staff, volunteers, donors, supporters, families, and clients – have a “new normal” to navigate. We’ve been closely following the science and the guidelines from our local and federal public health officials to establish an updated health and safety protocol as we return to full capacity. We’ve given the following procedures careful consideration in order to build forward while keeping the health and safety of our community as our top priority.

We’re working toward “normal,” but we are continuing to follow all CDC and local health guidelines – including protocol around vaccinations and face coverings – and implementing additional safety precautions across departments. We’re also keeping office visits to a minimum, on an as-needed basis. And as before, any volunteer, supporter, visitor, or client who feels ill or has a fever should stay home; staff and contractors will do the same.

Let’s keep ourselves and each other safe and healthy!

Habitat’s Administrative Offices in Oakland and Milpitas

As of July 2021, Habitat’s administrative staff are still encouraged to work remotely when possible. So, if you need to interact with staff, please do so via phone and email whenever possible. If an in-person visit is necessary, visitors will be required to wear a mask in our offices at all times.

Employees that must return to the office will follow health and safety protocol:

  • We encourage all employees to get vaccinated.
  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly using soap and water for 20 seconds. If soap and water are not immediately available, employees will use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or the inside of the elbow. Employees will dispose of used tissues in a trash receptacle.
  • Wear face coverings. Per CAL-OSHA, face coverings do not include scarves, ski masks, bandanas, or balaclavas.
  • Maintain distance with others when possible.

Client Services

We ask that clients and prospective clients – current homeowners, prospective homeowners, Housing and Financial Counseling clients, and home repair clients – coordinate next steps with the appropriate staff over the phone or email.

If you are asked to come to the office, please wear a face covering and only enter the building if you are in good health.

  • Homeownership:
    We are unable to accept walk-ins at this time. If you have questions regarding our Homeownership services, please contact us at (510) 803-3344 or HomeownerInfo@HabitatEBSV.org.
  • Home Repair:
    We are unable to accept walk-ins at this time. If you have questions regarding our home repair services, please contact us at (510) 803-3388 or HomeRepair@HabitatEBSV.org.

Volunteerism:

  • On the Construction Sites and Playhouse Builds:
    • For outdoor spaces and builds, unvaccinated people are required to wear a face covering when unable to maintain a minimum six-foot distance from others. Vaccinated people are not required to wear face coverings, but physical distancing is still encouraged where possible.
    • For indoor construction and build events, face coverings and physical distancing are required for all employees and volunteers.
  • At a ReStore:
    • ReStore volunteers are required to wear a face covering while indoors.
  • In a Playhouse Workshop:
    • Playhouse volunteers and staff are required to wear a face covering and maintain physical distancing while indoors.

ReStores:

Our ReStore locations in Oakland, Concord, and San Jose remain open to shoppers and donors. ReStore staff and volunteers are required to wear face coverings regardless of their vaccination status. Customers and donors are strongly encouraged but not required to wear face coverings.

About the Author

Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley

As an independent affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, Habitat East Bay/Silicon Valley believes in a world where everyone has a decent place to live. We create opportunities for families to transform their lives, gaining the strength, stability, and self-reliance they need to build a better future. Working together as a community, we build homes with affordable mortgages, repair and renovate existing homes, counsel first-time homebuyers, and revitalize neighborhoods in Alameda, Contra Costa, and Santa Clara counties. For more information, please call 866.450.4432.

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