NORTH AURORA, Ill. (CBS) — An Illinois Department of Employment Security office in North Aurora has reopened to workers, after it was forced to close due to numerous COVID-19 cases.
On Thursday night, a source told CBS 2 only a few people showed up for work at the office, while most are still out fighting the virus.
We have also learned a deep cleaning was scheduled to take place Thursday.
The office was forced to shut down because of that coronavirus outbreak – with 13 employees, about half their staff, testing COVID-19 positive.
“We’re dropping like flies, essentially,” one worker told CBS 2’s Tara Molina earlier this week.
Workers said IDES didn’t choose to close right away.
“They haven’t been forthcoming with us regarding information,” the worker said.
As more and more people tested positive, the worker said they were told to keep coming to the office.
“They only thing we were told is: ‘You must report to work. You’re not affected,’” another worker said.
We’ve asked IDES about this before – in May, when, for the first time, we heard concerns from the workers inside IDES.
They questioned why they couldn’t work from home, even foreshadowing exactly this – more than a dozen workers sick.
“We’ve been begging them,” the first worker said. “We’ve been telling them that something needs to be done.”
An IDES spokeswoman told us at the time that the employees’ work cannot be done remotely because of technology limitations, possibly poor internet connection, and privacy concerns.
Six months later, Molina asked IDES why hasn’t the state addressed any of those issues?
Their spokeswoman just listed those same examples again, saying while they’ve improved their staff’s technology, they can’t overcome issues spanning a decade in a matter of months.
As a reminder, no IDES office is open to the public.
Also From CBS Chicago:
CBS 2 is committing to Working For Chicago, connecting you every day with the information you or a loved one might need about the jobs market, and helping you remove roadblocks to getting back to work.
We’ll keep uncovering information every day to help this community get back to work, until the job crisis passes. CBS 2 has several helpful items right here on our website, including a look at specific companies that are hiring, and information from the state about the best way to get through to file for unemployment benefits in the meantime.
November 13, 2020 at 06:50AM