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Lettuce Employee Announcements Home page

General

Are some LEYE restaurants closing?

Yes.  Most state and local governments across the U.S., including many where we operate, have ordered that restaurants close for a period of time in order to support a national effort to reduce the community transmission of COVID-19.  We are fully complying with those orders.

 

What are my options if I am scheduled to work but prefer not to?

If you have been scheduled to work and are unable or do not wish to report to work during an applicable stay-at-home order, please contact your manager to discuss taking advantage of any available paid or unpaid time off benefits, including voluntary furlough.

We understand that under the current circumstances, some employees will be more comfortable reporting to work than others.  LEYE is committed to the health and well-being of every employee, regardless of position. Most importantly, we not only encourage but insist that employees who are ill refrain from reporting to work.   If you or anyone you know is receiving different direction, please let us know immediately. We fully support the recommendations that the CDC and government officials have made on how to reduce community transmission.  Nevertheless, we will need some employees to continue to work in order to keep the necessary operations running and fully prepared to return to normal.

 

Which employees are being given the option of working from home?

We are looking at all positions across the company and directing as many people as possible, including some restaurant positions, to do some or all of their work from home — even when it might not be most convenient for the business or the affected employee.

The CDC and government officials are recommending an aggressive response to slowing the transmission of COVID-19.  This includes the recommendation that employers consider work-from-home options whenever possible. We are doing what we can to assist in this effort. Office positions like many of those at the corporate office lend themselves more readily to working from home. The same is not true of many restaurant positions. This is one way we can support the CDC’s “All of Community” approach and reducing community spread.

 

Does LEYE have any resources that can provide me with emotional support for dealing with how I am feeling about the COVID-19 healthcare emergency?

We encourage you to find support wherever you can within your own communities, including your LEYE work community, GMs and the Human Resources team at hr@leye.com.  You may also email questions to coronavirusquestions@leye.com. We will find strength in each other. 

Please also take advantage of the Employee Assistance Program resources available to you and your family members by calling 1-888-881-5462 or vising https://leye.mysupportportal.com/

 

How are temporary staffing agencies like Elite affected?

Although we work very closely with staffing agency employees, we are not in a position to provide them with any benefits or special status because they are not employed by LEYE.  The best advice we have is to direct them to their staffing agency for information. 

 

Is it possible that some of this information will change?

Yes.  Because the COVID-19 healthcare emergency and government responses to it continue to change frequently and often without notice, you can reasonably expect that some of the information contained in these FAQs may change.  We are doing our absolute best to provide you with thorough and accurate information and answers to your questions and will update them as quickly as possible when new information comes our way. 

 

Will there be any exceptions to what’s been outlined in this FAQ?

It’s possible.  The situation we are facing is very fluid and business needs may require us to modify, revise or change to respond accordingly.

Furlough

What does it mean that some employees are being placed on a “temporary furlough”? 

It means that you are still employed but, due to economic factors affecting our ability to operate and pay our employees, you are required to take unpaid time off. While on temporary furlough, you are expected not to perform any work activities.  Being on temporary furlough does not affect your at-will employment status.

 

Is that the same as a “lay off”?

No.  Although the term “furlough” is sometimes used interchangeably with the term “temporary layoff”, the term “layoff” is typically used when there is no expectation that the employee will return.  Our goal is to return as close as possible to business as usual as it was before the COVID-19 healthcare emergency.

 

If I am placed on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough, am I still employed by LEYE?

Yes, and it is our goal to return you to active work as soon as possible.  We look forward to it.

 

Will I be paid while I am on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

Furlough is unpaid.  However, at the start of your Temporary COVID-19 Furlough, you have the option to receive up to five days of available earned vacation pay.  You also have the option to receive available paid sick leave if your store is in one of the following locations:

Northbrook, IL

Glenview, IL

Chicago, IL

Montgomery County, MD

Oregon

Washington

You also have the option to receive available Nevada Paid Leave if your store is in Nevada.  We strongly encourage employees who are on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough to apply for unemployment benefits and will fully support your application for benefits. (See related question above.) 

 

If I am placed on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough, how long should I expect it to last?

It is our goal to return as many team members as possible to work as soon as we can re-open our restaurants.  The length of your furlough will depend on where you work and your individual circumstances as well as the direction we receive from your federal, state, and local government.

Your management team will keep you informed. At the same time, don’t hesitate to contact your management team, and certainly let them know if your contact information changes.

 

What happens to my Lettuce email and phone/voice mail while I’m on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

While you are on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough, we will keep your email and phone/voice mail active and accessible; however, please keep in mind that you are not expected to work while you are on furlough.  VPN access, if applicable, will be temporarily disabled.  Although we may occasionally send updates throughout the COVID-19 healthcare crisis, you are not expected or required to monitor your work email or voice mail.

 

Is the recent change to our paystubs related to the Temporary COVID-19 Furloughs? 

No.  The recent change to our paystubs is not related to the Temporary COVID-19 Furloughs.

In what can be described as a very unfortunate coincidence, we were recently informed by the company that prints our paychecks (Ceridian) that they are requiring changes to our paystubs, including the news that they could no longer accommodate the printing of average hours worked:

  • Other than the exceptions noted below, all of the information previously printed on the paystubs is the same.  However, the look is slightly different.
  • All paystubs will be made available electronically via the new Ceridian website that was launched at the beginning of this year.
    • Please see Samantha Levy’s 01/21/20 email to stores for more information including the instructions.
    • Employees should email hradmin@leye.com if they need any help accessing documents.
  • Ceridian notified us that they are now unable to print average hour calculations on paycheck stubs. We understand that this is information is important to employees and we are working on possible solutions. In the meantime, Office Managers can provide vacation and insurance average hours upon request.

 

What if I am on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough and have an outstanding loan owed to Lettuce?

Regular employee loan payments will be paused while on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough. 

Unemployment Benefits

May I apply for unemployment benefits while I am on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough? 

Yes.  We strongly encourage employees who are on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough to apply for unemployment benefits and will fully support your application for benefits. 

That said, decisions regarding unemployment benefits are made by your state’s department of employment services or similar agency.  The below link provides access to resources in every state, including instructions for applying online, which will likely expedite your application.  Use this link (or Google: “CareerOneStop Unemployment Benefits Finder”):

Unemployment Resources – CareerOneStop

Note that this page has a link to convert to Spanish in the top right corner

Additional benefits, including possible COVID-19-specific benefits, may be available from your state or local government.  For example, use this link for information about the variety of support services that the California Employment Development Department provides to individuals affected by COVID-19 (use the link or Google: “California EDD Covid-19”):

California COVID-19 Resources

 

Are unemployment benefits available to non-exempt/hourly employees whose hours have been reduced due to the COVID-19 healthcare emergency?

Maybe, and we strongly encourage employees in this situation to apply for unemployment benefits and will fully support your application for benefits. 

Again, decisions regarding unemployment benefits are made by your state’s department of employment services or similar agency.  The below link provides access to resources in every state, including instructions for applying online, which will likely expedite your application.  Use this link (or Google: “CareerOneStop Unemployment Benefits Finder”):

Unemployment Resources – CareerOneStop

Note that this page has a link to convert to Spanish in the top right corner

Additional benefits, including possible COVID-19-specific benefits, may be available from your state or local government.  For example, use this link for information about the variety of support services that the California Employment Development Department provides to individuals affected by COVID-19 (use the link or Google: “California EDD Covid-19”):

California COVID-19 Resources

Benefits

How will the Temporary COVID-19 Furlough affect employees’ insurance premiums?

Lettuce will cover any medical insurance premiums that would otherwise be deducted from your paycheck while you are on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough to pay for your coverage in full through June 30, 2020. Premiums for other ancillary benefits (such as dental insurance) will be deferred until a future date.

Will average hours for insurance eligibility be affected by this furlough?

We are working with our insurance carriers in an effort to ensure that your average hours for insurance coverage will not be affected by the loss of hours during the COVID-19 crisis.

How will the Temporary COVID-19 Furlough affect benefits other than insurance benefits?

Employees on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough will retain their full- or part-time status and remain eligible for applicable LEYE benefits.  For example, seniority, vacation accrual schedules, restaurant discounts, LEYE Help Fund and accessibility to the EAP, the credit union and PerkSpot discounts will not be affected. 

Will I be able to use my employee discount card while I am on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

Yes.

Is the 51% special discount being extended to all employees in all markets?

Yes.  Lettuce has extended the 51% special discount to all employees in all markets until further notice.  Standard restrictions and limitations apply.

Am I able to use any of my available paid sick leave, Nevada Paid Leave, earned vacation, bonus days or personal days at the start of a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

 Yes, with respect to any available time that you have earned as of the day before the start of your Temporary COVID-19 Furlough:

You have the option to receive up to five days of available earned vacation pay, bonus days or personal days (in total). 

You also have the option to receive available paid sick leave if your store is in one of the following locations:

Northbrook, IL

Glenview, IL

Chicago, IL

Montgomery County, MD

Oregon

Washington

You also have the option to receive available Nevada Paid Leave if your store is in Nevada.  We strongly encourage employees who are on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough to apply for unemployment benefits and will fully support your application for benefits. 

Will employees who are placed on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough be placed on a leave of absence?

No.  Time spent on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough will not count toward any other leaves (including FMLA leave). 

 I am a Lettuce Employee who has NOT been placed on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough.  Can I take my earned available vacation days?

If your vacation has been planned and approved in accordance with Lettuce policy, you will be permitted to take the vacation days; however, no new vacation requests are being approved until further notice.

If my anniversary falls during the time when I am not allowed to request it, will I lose any available vacation that I have not used before my anniversary?

No.  Where applicable, the use-it-or-lose it vacation policy is being temporarily suspended until further notice.  When employees are once again able to request vacation, we will provide an additional period of time in which to use any vacation time that would otherwise have been lost on their anniversary date.

 

Re-hire / HR

If I am a re-hired employee, what date will be used to determine whether and/or when I will be placed on Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

We will use your “adjusted hire date”, which means your most recent hire date.

 

What if I find another job while I am on a Temporary COVID-19 Furlough?

We hope that every one that is placed on Furlough returns to work with us.  We understand completely that being on Furlough may require you to take another job and we completely support you doing what is best for you.  Because it is our intention to return you to work when the situation allows, if you are unable to return to work when we inform you (i.e., you got another job), we cannot guarantee that your position will remain open.  The only thing we ask is that you communicate with us if you do not intend to return to work with us.

 

What is the status of recruiting and hiring?

With rare exceptions in extraordinary circumstances, we will temporarily not be recruiting or hiring any new employees until further notice.

Projects

Will LEYE continue to build new restaurants as planned?

We have temporarily halted construction on all new projects.  We look forward to resuming those projects soon after the crisis is over.

What is happening with major corporate projects, such as the Digital Transformation project? 

Right now we have hit a temporary pause on major projects while we collectively work to respond to the immediate COVID-19 crisis.  We look forward to resuming “normal” operations when the conditions permit, and expect to continue driving many of these projects toward completion.  If you feel that you have not gotten direction on any project, please reach out to your Manager.