COLUMBUS – Governor DeWine recently issued a state of emergency for the state of Ohio, and along with the Ohio Department of Health, has implemented a variety of strategies to reduce the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). To do their part in reducing risk to Ohio State University Extension employees or clientele, they have implemented a teleworking plan effective immediately, and all OSU Extension offices will be closed to the public until further notice.
This mirrors The Ohio State University’s decision earlier this week to close university buildings and facilities on all of its campuses to “critical services” only (such as law enforcement and public safety; hospitals and health services; facility utilities; and a few others).
While their physical offices will be closed, they are committed to continuing to conduct their work as fully as possible. Their employees are prepared to telework and are ready to serve their local clients and communities. In recent years, OSU Extension has invested in the technology needed to facilitate effective teleworking for our organization; and they will utilize their resources during this challenging situation to remain engaged with Ohioans. Clients, stakeholders, and other community members should continue to connect with any OSU Extension staff member via phone or email as usual.
Reopening of any county office facilities will depend on decisions from the governor and the state of Ohio, as well as The Ohio State University. The exact date when normal operations are expected resume in county Extension offices is unknown at this time. Until then, OSU Extension office staff will be working remotely and will remain accessible and available via email and phone. The health and well-being of our stakeholders, event participants, and employees is of utmost importance.
Each OSU Extension office has developed a business continuity plan that outlines how Extension staff will operate during situations such as the coronavirus outbreak. All staff will continue to work and serve local clientele through normal office hours (as previously determined by each county), and they will remain accountable for program management needs.
Please note that most Extension-planned activities from now through April 20 are postponed, scheduled to be held virtually, or canceled. If you have not already been contacted about an event or activity in which you were scheduled to participate and you have a question, check with your local contact for that event.
If you have questions, contact your local OSU Extension office. Contact OSU Extension Darke County at 937-548-5215.
You can also visit extension.osu.edu/lao for office phone numbers and a direct link to each office’s website and staff directory. If you reach voice mail, please leave a message with your name and contact information, and you will be contacted as soon as possible. For information on the coronavirus and how to prevent its spread, or learn how the state of Ohio and The Ohio State University are working to keep our communities safe, visit:
Ohio Department of Heath
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)—Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The Ohio State University