WHDC Updates

COVID-19 Tips from NYCETC

March 16, 2020

WHDC encourages all to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out this useful guide from our friend Jose Ortiz, Jr., Executive Director of NYC Employment & Training Coalitions (NYCETC). We’ve added a few other resources and will continue to make updates as we receive them.

Below you will find Federal, State and Local Government Resources; Day-to-Day Tips; Support and Discussions for Human Services Organizations; and Small Business Support.


Please take a look at the following Federal, State, and Local agencies links provided below. These are the main websites for an overview on COVID-19. They each contain information on the symptoms, prevention, testing, and precautions around travel, as well as other resources, guides, and answers to commonly asked questions.

Government Agencies


Additional Resources


As you develop your organization’s response, particularly for multi-service organizations, consider organizing your plan specific to the following primary areas of work:

  • Clients Served – assessing vulnerability and establishing prioritization
  • Staff – identifying essential roles, HR policy, internal communication
  • Facilities and Operations – safety, signage, supplies, and protocol modification
  • Financial – cash flow/payroll, performance implications, emergency expenses

Below, are some day-to-day tools to prevent and/or manage the epidemic, including tips we have collected from a number of workforce development service providers. We’ve listed them into three broad categories: Personal ProtectiveCommunity & Social Distancing, and Environmental Measures.

Personal Protective 

  • Ensure the office has sufficient supply of personal hygiene products, especially hand soap and hand sanitizer.
  • Encourage employees to wash hand frequently, cover coughs, and to stay home when sick through emails and flyers throughout your office and facilities.
  • Ask custodial staff to wipe down surfaces, especially doorknobs and elevator buttons more regularly

Community & Social Distancing 

  • Ensure employees traveling for personal reasons are informed of which areas are high-risk and the associated risk.
  • Establish policies to ensure employees returning from travel to high-risk areas self-quarantine and work from home for 14-days.
  • Limit non-essential business travel for all employees.  
  • Limit large gatherings of employees and large events. 
  • Consider creating separate teams of employees working on essential business functions. Teams could then be located in separate areas and/or asked to rotate working from home.
  • Consider staggering shifts for workers, as well as staggered one week quarantines if necessary.
  • Institute policies to separate employees from being in close contact.
  • Encourage and support telecommuting:
    • Do an inventory of employees working with laptops that can be more easily asked to work from home.
    • Ask staff and clients about computer and Internet access at home and set up policies for those without access. 
    • Investigate your organization’s IT capacity if the need arises to have all staff work remotely simultaneously and accessing your servers. 
  • Encouraging and supporting remote learning and training:
    • Analyze and prepare what classroom content, if any, could be delivered remotely or via alternative methods.
    • Prepare digital and distance learning tools and protocols. 
    • Digital tools to consider include Zoom and Google Hangouts (see comparative analysis)

Environmental Measures 

  • Note: While COVID-19 can survive on surfaces for approximately 72 hours, the main method of transmission is from person-to-person. 
  • Clean surfaces regularly and increase cleaning of high touch surfaces.