Newport News Shipbuilding extends liberal leave, new shift times in response to coronavirus

Posted at 4:11 PM, Apr 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-16 06:30:57-04

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - The Newport News Shipbuilding has announced new coronavirus measures, allowing liberal leave until May and new shift times.

Jennifer Boykin, Newport News Shipbuilding President, released a statement of new coronavirus measures, in response to the rise of coronavirus cases at the shipyard.

"My commitment to remain open while offering Liberal Leave allows every employee to make the decision that least impacts them and their families. However, I understand when someone is taking Liberal Leave beyond PTO, the decision results in real financial worry," Boykin says.

Boykins says the company has established a NNS COVID-19 Crisis Action Group (CAG), compromised of leaders from across the shipyard to focus on resolving safety concerns.

Boykins says Liberal Leave will be extended until May 18 for employees who do not feel comfortable coming to work.

Employees who chose to come to work will follow new eight hour shifts beginning May 4, to reduce close personal contact.

New shifts will be from 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and 6 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Supervisors will notify all employees by April 20 of shift assignments.

The three and a half hour gap between shifts will be spent cleaning high-traffic and high touch-point areas which include, bathrooms, timeclocks, turnstiles and hand rails.

Shipbuilders will be responsible for cleaning their own personal spaces, including tools, equipment, desks, conference tables, and kitchenettes at the beginning and end of both shifts.

Employees who are able to perform their work responsibilities from home, and who have supervisor approval, should continue to work from home.

Parking will remain open until further notice.