FREEBORN COUNTY, Minn. - The Freeborn County Board of Commissioners is debating a new proposed COVID-19 sick leave policy.
Earlier this month the Freeborn County Board of Commissioners was presented with a proposed policy change to allow a 5-day sick leave for staff who are vaccinated and test positive with a breakthrough case of COVID-19.
The Department of Public Health developed a plan for when someone has had a close or distant exposure to COVID-19 and whether or not they have been vaccinated.
Freeborn County Administrator Thomas Jensen says the county has just as many employees in isolation now as they did at the height of the pandemic.
“We don't want people feeling ill and coming to work. I don't want the possibility of spreading the virus because you don't want to use your paid time off,” Jensen says.
The county has twice been forced to shut down the driver's license center and has narrowly avoided shutting down the child protection services unit.
Breakthrough cases remain a rarity and Jensen wants everyone vaccinated.
“We have to have people at the desk to respond to folks like you, to renew their driver's license, to do all the things you need to do in person, and if we don't have bodies in the desk we're going to have to shut those things down,” he explains.
Jensen adds, “Get vaccinated to give them that extra layer of protection that allows us to keep providing the services we need to keep our patrol deputies on the road, staff in our jail, folks in our highway department.”
The board is to reach a conclusion on the new policy on October 19th.