Dear Colleagues –

Thanks to the collaboration and cooperation of our entire staff, the MBL has rapidly implemented important steps in the battle against COVID-19. The attention and planning that each of you has paid to your specific responsibilities—whether they be in research, facilities, or administration—and your adaptation to change has been remarkable.

Because of your efforts, the MBL’s compliance with Governor Baker’s “stay at home” order announced earlier this week has gone smoothly and we are successfully practicing the social distancing measures that are critical to the health of our community at this time. On behalf of the entire MBL, I’d like to thank the staff who are continuing to work on-campus to ensure that MBL stays operational and that our animals and facilities are being cared for and maintained. I would also like to acknowledge our faculty and research staff who have stepped up to help frontline healthcare workers by donating gloves and other protective gear to local hospitals. This exemplifies the sense of community and can-do spirit that makes the MBL special.

As you know, the MBL is voluntarily providing pay to employees for COVID-19 related purposes through the COVID-19 Leave Policy. This effort goes concurrently toward satisfying any legislative or regulatory requirements, including the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. I am pleased that the MBL can go above and beyond the two weeks of leave mandated by the Federal Government by offering this important benefit to our employees for up to six weeks.

As you continue to cope with the disruptions of this pandemic, I’d like to remind you of resources available to help you through this difficult period.

  • MBL’s Employee Assistance Program has developed a series of informative tip sheets, covering topics from transitioning to working at home to talking with children about Coronavirus. Counselors are available 24/7 via live chat or phone. More information can be found on the Coronavirus Resources intranet page.
  • Staying in touch with your colleagues is an important part of maintaining continuity of your work. Information Technology’s Working Remotely resources page provides links and information to a variety of telecommuting tools.

We will all continue to adapt our work in new and creative ways. This week we launched an effort to provide educational content to students through a new video series called MBL SciShoots. This is just one example of how the MBL can continue to share its science and expertise with the local community and beyond.

While some of our most challenging days may lie ahead, together we will continue to advance the science and education that are so fundamental to the MBL mission. Thank you for your continued commitment.

Nipam H. Patel