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Department of Labor Suspends In-Person Services Due To COVID-19

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — The Virgin Islands Department of Labor (VIDOL) continues to provide services while ensuring that all of our activities are adherent to public health guidelines. As the State of Emergency continues, VIDOL Commissioner, Gary Molloy announces the suspension of in-person services.

Clients are urged to use alternative communication methods, or for individuals who do not have access to technical devices needed to use online services can utilize the drop box outside.

While VIDOL has closed its common areas to the public, the Department continues to increase methods of communication to serve the public. The following information is on how to access VIDOL services by mail and online.

Send mail to:

St. Croix Mailing Address: 4401 Sion Farm-Christiansted St. Croix, VI 00820-4245

St. Thomas Mailing Address: 2353 Kronprindsens Gade St. Thomas, VI 00802-6221

Information and Applications from various Divisions are now available on the VIDOL website at www.vidol.gov and can be submitted online as well. Individuals that need to apply and do not have access to a computer or a cell phone, can call. There is an Unemployment Services hotline dedicated to helping with online access and filling in basic identification detail. At this moment, clients may call the telephone lines in either district.

Outside of Unemployment Insurance, other services will be available upon request and clients are encouraged to use the website to obtain information and find resources. VIDOL emphasizes that there will be no in-person interaction, services must be obtained online or by phone.

For more information visit www.vidol.gov The following details the recommended procedures to access services from the VI Department of Labor.

Unemployment Insurance

Any employer that needs to reduce hours, furlough, layoff, or reduced staff hours, the Virgin Islands Department of Labor is requesting that employers do the following:

Unemployment Insurance (continued)

1. Send a letter to the Unemployment Insurance Division that includes the names of the affected employees in advance of the reduction of hours to 20 a week, discharge or layoff.

2. You must also contact the Department of Labor directly at the following numbers to gain information on services that can be provided for affected individuals:

· St. Croix District (340) 713- 3424

· St. Thomas District (340) 715-5724.

Labor Relations

Contact Director Gwen Steele at 340-773-1994 ext. 2124 or via email at gwen.steele@dol.vi.gov on St. Croix and Ms. Rhonda Frazer Labor Relations Specialist at 340-776-3700 ext. 2028 rfrazer@vidol.gov on St. Thomas.

Worker’s Compensation

Contact Worker’s Compensation via telephone at (340) 713-3413 STX and (340) 715-5700 STT for general inquires. We are also asking that our providers continue to contact us via email and fax (340) 713-3421 STX and (340) 715-5743 STT. The Division will respond to all inquiries, concerns, and correspondence within 24 hours.

OSHA

Due to the recent COVID-19 events, VIDOSH is requiring employees to file a Safety and Health Complaint online at https://www.osha.gov/pls/osha7/eComplaintForm.html

Individuals (or their representatives) have the right to file a confidential safety and health complaint and request an OSHA inspection of your workplace if you believe there is a serious hazard or if you think your employer is not following OSHA standards. The complaint should be filed as soon as possible after noticing the hazard. A signed complaint is more likely to result in an onsite inspection.

How to File a Whistleblower Complaint

Individuals have the right to file a whistleblower complaint with OSHA if you believe your employer retaliated against you for exercising your rights as an employee under the whistleblower protection laws enforced by OSHA. In states with OSHA-approved State Plans, employees may file complaints with https://www.osha.gov/whistleblower/WBComplaint.html

Hearings & Appeals

As a result of the recent developments with COVI19, [CORONAVIRUS] effective immediately, the VIRGIN ISLANDS DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, HEARINGS & APPEALS UNIT, St. Croix & St. Thomas/St. John Districts are notifying the community that we will be holding all hearings telephonically as per the instructions to be provided to all noticed parties. On the date of your hearing, parties must: Call in from your residence or office to the number that appears on your mailed/emailed Department of Labor Hearing Notice.

Individuals in need of service are asked to leave their name, phone number, email, and any questions with the numbers provided. For all information, inquiries, and concerns, contact Chief Administrative Law Judge, June Austin, Director at 340-773-1994 ext. 2107 or via email at jaustin@dol.vi.gov on St. Croix and Administrative Law Judge James Kitson at 340-776-3700 ext. 2036 on St. Thomas.

Youth Services

Due to the pandemic of Coronavirus [COVID-19], the Division of Youth Services would like to notify the territory that we will be foregoing our in-person interactions with the general public to ensure communal safety. However, we will continue to serve the territory of the Virgin Islands, via telephone and email. We will respond to all inquiries within 24 hours. Please make sure to leave your name, phone number, email, and reason for contacting the Division.

For information, inquiries, and concerns, contact Director Jermaine Mulley at 340-773-1994 ext. 2154 or via email at Jermaine.mulley@dol.vi.gov on St. Croix; Coordinator Shenika Sebastien at 340-773-1994 ext. 2080 or Shenika.sebastien@dol.vi.gov on St. Thomas; Amelia Christian at 340-773-1994 ext. 2140 or via email at Amelia.christian@dol.vi.gov on St. Thomas.

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