DHS employee shutdown information

This page has information for DHS employees about the 2011 state government shutdown.

Employees should call the DHS Employee Emergency Information Line at (651) 431-3023 for updates during a state shutdown. Employees who are deaf or hard of hearing should contact the Minnesota Relay Service at (800) 627-3529 and ask them to call (651) 431-3023. Because there are a limited number of phone lines into DHS, you may receive a busy signal and will need to try again.

Stay tuned for more information – July 20, 2011

The state budget bills are signed into law. DHS employees should stay tuned for more information about returning to work. The DHS Employee Emergency Information Line will be updated to indicate when employees should return to work. In addition, employees whose personal email address has been updated in the state HR payroll system will receive an email stating when to return to work AND all employees with update phone contact information will receive an automatic phone message. See the information about how to update your personal contact in Employee Self Service in the FAQs below.

Child care assistance and services for seniors restored

DHS will resume most child care payments as well as grants that fund a number of critical human services, following an order by Ramsey County District Court (PDF) July 13. Among services funded are child care assistance and some services for vulnerable seniors. More information is in a news release announcing the restored services and on the DHS Shutdown Information page.

No changes in dependent health care coverage during shutdown

Dependent health care coverage will continue for state employees and their dependents during the government shutdown. A change in health coverage was announced in a news report in error. The agreement to continue family health care coverage with the employer contribution and dependents covered during the shutdown is part of the Memorandum of Understanding negotiated with unions. If employees who have questions or need assistance may call the SEGIP Call Center at (651) 355-0100 or visit www.BeReadyMN.com.

Employee resources

Frequently asked questions

  • Question: Will Minnesota Management & Budget (MMB) provide updates during the shutdown?
  • Answer: MMB staff will post a short message on the MMB Twitter account that provides updates and directs employees to the www.bereadymn.com website for more information. DHS employees can voluntarily sign up their personal cellular phones (that are capable of receiving text messages) to receive a text message as soon as MMB posts the information on Twitter. Employees also can sign up for Twitter alerts at home, on their personal computers, on their own time. MMB can be followed on Twitter by first signing up for a free account, then searching for “MN State Emergencies.”

    Question: Will employees and their family members continue to have access to Employee Assistance Progam (EAP) services during a shutdown?
    Answer:
    Employees and their family members can use LifeMatters, Employee Assistance Program (EAP) counseling and referral services during a layoff. This benefit is free and confidential and can be accessed by calling (651) 259-3840 or (800) 657-3719. More information about EAP services is available online at: www.mmb.state.mn.us/eap.

    Question: Where can I send questions not covered here?
    Answer:
    The list of frequently asked questions for employees regarding a state government shutdown is available on the BeReadyMN website. Employees are encouraged to monitor the site for updates. Employees may also send questions to the DHS Labor Relations mailbox: *DHS_HR Labor Relations.

  • Question: How will I know if I should report to work for my next scheduled shift on or after July 1, 2011?
    Answer:
    Unless and until you receive a notice that your position is critical, you should not report to work on your next scheduled shift on or after July 1, 2011. You will be placed in layoff status or on an involuntary, unpaid leave of absence until you are notified that you are to return to work.
  • Question: If my position is not critical, but is later determined to be critical, how will I be notified?
    Answer:
    Someone will contact you at the phone numbers listed in the official state the HR information system. If you cannot be reached at the phone numbers listed, you will be contacted via email and/or a letter will be mailed to your home address.
  • Question: How do I update my personal contact info?
    Answer:
  • • Sign in to the Employee Self Service website (www.state.mn.us/employee).
  • • Select “My Personal Information.”
  • • Under Phone Numbers, enter the phone Type and Telephone Number.
  • • Click on Save.
  • • Under Email Addresses, enter your home information.
  • • Click on Save.
  • • Under Home and Mailing Address, click on Edit.
  • • Enter the correct information.
  • • Click on Save.
  • Question: If my position is not critical, will I be recalled when the shutdown ends?
    Answer:
    All employees laid off or placed on involuntary unpaid leave of absence (LOA) because of the shutdown will be recalled to the position held immediately before shutdown. Assume DHS is shut down until you hear from your supervisor, HR, MMB, or an official public announcement as described below.
  • A message will be left on the DHS Employee Emergency Information Line at (651) 431-3023 to announce that:
  • • The shutdown has been averted and you should report to work as regularly scheduled on Friday, July 1, OR
  • • The shutdown has occurred, OR
  • • The shutdown is OVER and when you should report back to work.
  • • You should check this number regularly to hear the broadcast message. If you are deaf or hard of hearing, contact the Relay Service at 1 (800) 627-3529 and ask them to call (651) 431-3023.
  • • Watch the state shutdown website for up-to-date information: https://www.BeReadyMN.com/
  • • Watch local news reports for information.

  • Question: What if I am unable to return on the date of recall?
    Answer:
    Employees shall make every effort to report to work on the date indicated in the recall notice. The recall notice may be verbal, written or electronic. If you know you will be unavailable for recall on some specific dates, please work with your supervisor prior to the shutdown and come to mutually agreeable terms.

    Question: Can I connect via remote access during the shutdown?
    Answer:
    Employees are not to use any state resources or equipment during a shutdown. This includes remote access.


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