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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Infectious Disease Pandemic Prevention Protocol Policy of the North Bergen Housing Authority (NBHA)

In response to the current pandemic of Coronavirus (Covid-19) Effective Immediately this policy is formalized as an action plan dealing with preventive measures that must be taken to stem the spread of infectious diseases in this case specific to Coronavirus; but, may be applicable to seasonal flu and any future infectious diseases. Part or all of these measures will take effect as directed by the Executive Director after consultation with public health officials, legal counsel, and or; in accordance with any federal, state or local directives it is determined necessary to activate all or part of this action plan and policy.

The following actions shall be implemented:
Frequent sanitization with disinfectant (Every 2 Hours at a minimum) or by specific request to all common areas, common area door handles intercoms, atm machines, mail rooms, laundry rooms, community rooms, office and security booths, common area bathrooms for public use, elevators, garbage rooms, and stairways. Disinfectants will also be periodically distributed via hand-held liquid spray devices and by Fog dispenser as needed.
Ensuring hand sanitizer is readily available in all common area bathrooms and other
common areas as deemed necessary.

Tenants shall be encouraged to practice social distancing by maintaining a minimum of a 6- foot distance from each other. No more than two (2) persons shall be allowed in an elevator or in the laundry room at the same time except in the case of an elevator when an extreme emergency exists. (Said rule does not include first responders).

NBHA Security personnel shall be increased to 24- hour coverage of all properties. Security Guards and all NBHA or contracted employees must always wear a mask and gloves and remain in the guard booth to the extent possible.

If and when necessary in order to slow down or prevent the spread of infection among NBHA staff; The executive director may implement a minimum staff policy whereby only employees critical to operation will be required to report to work while others will be asked to work from home. In addition, the NBHA shall comply with Federal, State, and local directives regarding the same.

Employee time clocks shall be upgraded to an eye scan device to avoid multiple people having to use a touch surface.

All reception windows in offices that serve tenants and the public shall be changed to a bank style window with just an opening to slide paperwork under.

Employees and contracted employees are to use universal sanitary precautions and limit contact with tenants to the extent possible. Employees exhibiting signs of illness will be sent home.

Signage notice shall be posted at the entryway to the authority offices and office personnel contact with the public shall be limited to the extent possible, and by appointment only. A drop box shall be placed outside the office door to facilitate the dropping off paperwork required for the application and or re-certification process.

Employees such as maintenance and security personnel who have frequent contact with the public shall wear gloves and at a minimum a level three mask with anti-fog foam strips or an N95 Mask.

Tenant service employees and building managers shall periodically call to check on the tenant’s well-being; especially those known to have no immediate family and those who are physically disabled and or homebound.

A Food pantry of non- perishable items shall be stored for distribution to homebound tenants with no family assistance as needed.

Signage notice shall be posted at the entry way of each building asking that visitors who are feeling ill with flu like symptoms or whom have had a known exposure refrain from entering the building. Warning that persons who willfully ignore the signs and enters a building while exhibiting signs of illness may be subject to criminal prosecution for 2C: 3-18-3 Defiant Trespass.

Infrared body temperature readings of all persons entering any of the congregate high- rise residential buildings.  Visitors and or employees with a body- temperature of 100.3 or above shall be denied entry by security.

At the discretion of the executive director, all tenant events, seminars and gatherings if deemed necessary shall be postponed until the State of Emergency is declared to be over. At the Lawler towers where tenants use the community room as a walk through in order to access the laundry room; all chairs, couches shall be removed to prevent public gathering.

At the discretion of the executive director once deemed necessary or in accordance with shelter in place orders declared by the State of New Jersey;  The playground, basketball court, and exercise park shall remain locked until the threat risk is deemed to be low or the State of Emergency is declared to be over.

The decision to formally quarantine tenants is not made by the NBHA, any such decision would be made by the North Bergen Board of Health after first consulting with the New Jersey State Board of Health in accordance with their guidelines.

The executive director reserves the right to suspend or ban overnight guest visits in accordance with the NBHA overnight guest policy and or Federal, State, or local directives and under the advice of legal counsel.

The decision to ban all non- essential visitors to our properties shall be made as an ultimate measure at the discretion of the executive director after consulting with the North Bergen Board of Health, legal counsel, and or, federal State or local directives.

When testing is made available, tenants of all congregate high- rise buildings shall be offered an opportunity to submit to a test by medical professionals coordinated through the local board of health at no cost to the tenant.

Following the testing of tenants in senior citizen and disabled high- rise congregate housing the same shall be offered to all tenants residing in low and midrise housing once made available.

These safety precautions also apply to LIHTC Properties that are managed by NBHA. 
(Any associated costs for these policies shall be paid for separately by LIHTC property owners)
All other measures as declared mandated or imposed by the State or Federal government.

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