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All county workers must follow rules

DEAR EDITOR:

Let’s discuss the cat. Who really thinks that bringing a rescued “any kind of pet” to work is a good idea? Our commissioners don’t think this is a good idea and have posted signage on the front door that states “No Pets Allowed” to address this very issue.

Sadly, one of our employees has experienced an alleged allergic reaction to the cat. We should expect that our elected officials and other county managers performed their jobs professionally as OSHA regulations require they do, following good safety protocols by conducting an incident investigation. Per OSHA, a skin disease or disorder or a respiratory condition necessitating treatment greater than first aid must be investigated. Because an employee alleged she suffered an allergic reaction resulting in her having to leave work (treatment possibly greater than first aid), the employee’s supervisor should have conducted an Incident Investigation Report (OSHA form 301 or similar) and human resources is required within seven days of the incident to decide whether to record the incident on the OSHA 300 Log or not. Because the employee left work and lost pay, our county commissioners office should have protocols that necessitate that the employee be seen and treated by a licensed physician who would have diagnosed her condition and determined if she, in fact, did have an allergic reaction and what caused the reaction.

If all this occurred as we should expect to have occurred, then the issue of the cat, the grievance and lost work day should be resolved. The union officials and human resources should be on top of this. The commissioner with the pet should behave professionally and when informed her actions may have caused harm to a fellow employee, she should have apologized, been concerned and behaved as a manager. And had she adhered to the “No Pets Allowed” policy, this would not have occurred.

Would someone kindly inform the new commissioner that the county commissioners office does have a work rule policy on appropriate work attire? It’s listed under Human Resources, Policy Manual, Policies and Procedures Manual, section 2.9 Appearance. If she doesn’t like the policy as it is written, then she should have it changed; but until it is changed, she like all other employees, should and must follow the policy as written. It would be professional of her to do so.

County commissioners should follow their own existing work rules and policies. No pets allowed means no pets allowed. Appropriate work attire is what it is. If you don’t want to dress appropriately to come to work, then don’t come into the workplace. It’s the professional behavior to exhibit.

BILL LICHT

Cortland

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