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Coronavirus Updates

A Private News Bulletin from Company Leaders

Update #4

Valued WeatherGard Team Member,

I hope this message finds you healthy and safe. Due to the continued uncertainty, we believe the best path forward is for all employees who can't work remotely to file for unemployment with the Michigan Unemployment Agency. The Federal government has added an additional $600 per week to the current state benefits to help people get through the COVID pandemic.

For those WeatherGard team members who are independent contractors (direct sellers, sales, canvassers, or installers), the state and federal government is opening up benefits to you as well. The Unemployment Insurance Agency will release guidance regarding eligibility and the application process in the coming days.

This does not mean that WeatherGard is firing you – we intend to place employees on leave during the mandatory work stoppage ordered by the governor. When we resume operations, we fully expect to bring you back to work.

In order to file for unemployment, we recommend using the online system: www.michigan.gov/uia. Instructions for the filing process can be found here: Fact Sheet #160 (PDF). Please note that depending on the first letter of your last name, there are certain days of the week you can file, however, everyone is allowed to file on Saturdays.

State of Michigan unemployment filing schedule

I recommend filing in the evening or late at night as the system is slow and prone to error out during peak hours.

Once you are in the system, you will need your social security and driver’s license number. You will also need the information on this Unemployment Compensation Notice in order to file – specifically, our UIA account number (1117362000) and our Federal Identification Number (382869513).

After you pass the fields that ask for the UIA account, you will get to a screen that asks questions. When it asks for "Separation Reason," choose Temporary Shut Down. When it asks for "circumstances of your separation," choose Layoff/Temporary Leave due to COVID. When asked if you expect to receive any payments after 3/29/20 – choose Yes. For the next question, regarding "hours already worked," choose Yes. Correct examples are shown below:

Screenshot #1 of a correctly filled in application.
Screenshot #2 of a correctly filled in application.

If you need help, email me at sbenezra@weathergardwindows.com or call me at 248-229-2729 and I can walk you though the process.

Sincerely,
Shlome Benezra

Updated 3 Apr 1:30pm

Update #3

Valued WeatherGard Team Member,

I hope this message finds you healthy and safe. Please see this notice from the Department of Labor (PDF) regarding the paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Please know that we're working diligently to determine how to help everyone benefit from the recent stimulus legislation. Many important details are still being worked out in Washington. When the way forward becomes clear, we will be ready to provide help and guidance to all of you.

Sincerely,
Shlome Benezra

Updated 2 Apr 2:15pm

Update #2

Valued WeatherGard Team Member,

I pray that everyone is safe and healthy and remains that way. Last night, the Senate reached an agreement for a massive stimulus package to assist families and businesses affected by the COVID-19 virus. Details of this bill have not yet been released, and it has yet to be voted on. Please note, whatever the final bill is, we will do our best to explain how it affects WeatherGard and its team members. Also note that this is in addition to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which was passed by Congress last week and will be effective on April 2nd, 2020.

Paychecks (both live checks and direct deposit) are being processed for this week Friday, March 27, 2020, as normal, including all the typical deductions you usually have. As you know, the wages for this Friday are based on work for last week, while we were still open.

With respect to future weeks, emails will go out tomorrow, based on department, detailing how we will proceed in the medium and long term. This will include some detail as to how the Families First Coronavirus Response Act will affect you, as well as any detail we can determine from the legislation they are working to finalize today, if possible. If you haven’t already provided us with your email, phone number(s) and emergency contact so we can reach you with important information, please do that now.

Also, please download the Paylocity app (iOS or Android) or go to paylocity.com and register. This will provide you access to your pay and tax documents, as well as provide us with another way to communicate with you. Registration instructions are available here: PDF link. Please take note of our company number: 104141. You will need this for registration.

Finally, if you have a smart phone, we recommend that everyone download the Zoom app (iOS or Android), as we will be setting up optional department meetings in the coming days to check in with everyone and be able to answer questions. In the meanwhile, if you have immediate questions, feel free to email me at sbenezra@weathergardwindows.com, Elsy ebaron@weathergardwindows.com or Toby benezra2@aol.com.

Sincerely,
Shlome Benezra

Updated 25 Mar 10:45pm

Update #1: Here’s where we’re at right now.

Valued WeatherGard Team Member,

We’re writing to give you some clarity on where things are right now, and what we’re doing as a company. Currently, we’re focused 100% on getting our company and our team through this difficult time. The next several weeks will be difficult, but we are confident that in the medium and longer term, that WeatherGard will be okay, and that your job will still be here.

Our goal is to resume work and be operational as quickly as possible. We understand the anxiety that comes with being out of work, and we will do everything in our power to help our team members obtain any benefits that are or will become available from the State or Federal government. As we learn and process this information, we will make it available here for you.

We are also trying to determine how to keep people working as much as possible during the stay-at-home order, and we are already working on several projects to try to keep the business operating under these difficult circumstances, as well as projects to help us all to hit the ground running the moment the situation improves, to make up for all this lost time.

A critical component during this downtime will be communication. It is imperative that you provide us with your email, phone number(s) and emergency contact so we can reach you with important information. Please do that now.

If you haven’t already, please download the Paylocity app (iOS or Android) or go to paylocity.com and register. This will provide you access to your pay and tax documents, as well as provide us with another way to communicate with you. Registration instructions are available here: PDF link. Please take note of our company number: 104141. You will need this for registration.

Please check this website on a regular basis as we will be updating it with the most current information as we get it.

Stay safe,
Shlome Benezra
Elsy Baron
Toby Benezra

Updated 23 Mar 3:45pm