Workforce

Pentagon starts reopening June 15

DOD photo by Senior Airman Perry Aston  11th Wing Public Affairs 

The Pentagon is moving to a restricted Phase One of its reopening plan June 15, the Defense Department announced June 11. That means there will be a "slight" uptick in personnel, with no more than 40% of the workforce in the offices on the reservation and at least 60% teleworking.

"Leaders and supervisors should have a plan specific for their organization on how and when their workforce is returning to workplaces in accordance with the Pentagon Reservation Resilience Plan," said DOD's chief management officer, Lisa Hershman, in a June 10 memo to personnel. "Please talk to your supervisor for what Phase One means for you."

Only mission essential personnel should return, the announcement states. Cloth face coverings are required when social distancing at six feet isn't possible and gatherings are capped at 10 people.

Hershman said the chief management office was using "commercial real estate industry best practices and artificial intelligence tools" as part of an assessment to redesign workspaces in the Pentagon and Mark Center to accommodate six feet of social distancing between people.

The Pentagon will also continue to randomly screen at building entrances, but advises personnel to take their temperature before reporting to the workplace and notifying supervisors for fevers of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) and that sick employees or those exhibiting flu-like symptoms stay home.

In a separate June 10 memo, Hershman also requested the defense secretary to create a video welcoming Pentagon personnel back while reinforcing temperature checks, good hygiene, social distancing and staying home when sick.

About the Author

Lauren C. Williams is senior editor for FCW and Defense Systems, covering defense and cybersecurity.

Prior to joining FCW, Williams was the tech reporter for ThinkProgress, where she covered everything from internet culture to national security issues. In past positions, Williams covered health care, politics and crime for various publications, including The Seattle Times.

Williams graduated with a master's in journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park and a bachelor's in dietetics from the University of Delaware. She can be contacted at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @lalaurenista.

Click here for previous articles by Wiliams.


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