Governor Whitmer’s announcement has prompted the City of Warren to take immediate action to help reverse the record number of cases and deaths in Michigan. Effective this Wednesday, all departments in the city will reactivate the remote work plans beginning on Wednesday. Mayor Fouts had ordered these plans into effect earlier this year. Most employees* will be working from home and those that work inside will be required to wear a mask, social distance, and sanitize while at city hall. City Hall will be closed to the public until further notice. Warren has been at the forefront of successfully combating COVID-19 and Mayor Fouts intends to keep us in a leadership position to protect our employees and the community while continuing to deliver effective city services to our residents. All hands-on deck meaning that all of us need to follow the simple protocol of masks, sanitizing and social distancing. Masks are to protect others and yourself with a recent study indicating it’s the single most important factor to stop the spread of this virus.
*We are requiring most employees to work from home unless they are absolutely needed at city hall.
In response to the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” message given by Governor Gretchen Whitmer today. I strongly support her message to combat and curtail the spread of the COVID-19 virus. This means that Warren City Hall employees that are not classified as a critical infrastructure worker or essential service worker may with the approval of your department head work at home with agreed upon tasks that you will be able to perform at home.
Most city hall workers will be able to work remotely from home effective Tuesday, March 24, 2020. This will be with the concurrence of your department administrator. Some of you may choose to come to work for a brief time to get work to take home. Some may choose to be part of the limited group that will work at city hall. This will be decided by your departmental administrator.
According to Governor Whitmer’s order exceptions are: “workers who are necessary to conduct minimum basic operations are those whose in-person presence is strictly necessary to allow the business or operation to maintain the value of inventory and equipment, care for animals, ensure security, process transactions (including payroll and employee benefits), or facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely”. Critical infrastructure workers are “workers who are necessary to sustain or protect life”.
Essential service people include: Police, Fire, Sanitation, Water, Waste Water Treatment, Payroll, election office workers, DPW, and Parks and Recreation workers.
Emphasis is that all of us must stay home unless it is deemed necessary to go to work. We must all keep a safe six feet distance from others. Cover your face and mouth when in a social setting. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Avoid shaking hands or any other close contact.
In my nearly 12 ½ years as Mayor of Warren this is the greatest challenge I have ever had to face. We are now dealing with a pandemic. While there are great challenges to the health of the people in our community, as well as the health of our economy, I am convinced that with great perseverance and a determination to overcome this monumental challenge, we will be on the road to recovery by the end of this summer, PROVIDING we follow the recommendations of the CDC, the Governor, and the President. That means to stay in our homes and also to show respect and consideration for those who may need help with groceries or medical supplies.
Let us all be our “brothers and sisters” keepers. May God Bless all of you in this great period of national adversity! We will prevail and we will overcome.
Mayor James R. Fouts
City of Warren
One City Square- Suite 215
Warren, MI 48093-6726
P.S. The city of Warren will continue to comply fully and cooperate with county, state, and national leadership. Together we will get through this crisis and come out stronger.