In my May message, I spoke about the initial onset of COVID-19 circumstances in the communities we serve, and I mentioned a few of the safety precautions we instituted. The safety and wellness of our members, customers and employees are of utmost importance to us at GVEC, not only during this pandemic, but at all times. Additionally, we recognize that without keeping our employees safe and well, we would not be able to provide the level of service you’ve come to know and expect from GVEC. We know what a valuable resource our employee base is—to the Co-op and to those we serve.
As an essential business, GVEC couldn’t simply shut down, so we had to adapt to remain productive and safe despite what was going on around us. We closed our lobbies to the public but kept our drive-thrus open for members’ and customers’ convenience. Our phenomenal maintenance staff kept buildings and workspaces sanitized and safe beyond usual standards, and when going to customers’ homes or property, GVEC staff exercised caution and practiced extra sanitation measures.
Keeping open lines of communication has also been key in keeping our employee family safe and well during this pandemic. With almost a third of our employees working from home, regular video meetings were valuable to keep pace for working as well as checking in on each other. Staff was asked to let their managers know of respiratory illness or illness that included fever within their households and to stay home if they felt sick. To reduce possible additional financial stress, GVEC provided company-insured employees and dependents 100% coverage for any COVID-19-related costs or absences.
At the beginning of May, in accordance with Governor Abbott’s plan to re-open Texas, we started welcoming employees that had been working remotely back into the offices, with our final group reporting back on June 1. Still exercising vigilance, they are asked to take their temperatures each morning and not come in if they feel sick in any way. Ensuring the wellness of our employee-family assures our ability to continually fulfill the needs of our member.
Along with our efforts to maintain our employees’ well-being, we recognize our responsibility to support our members as well, especially at a time financial concerns may be higher than usual for many. For this reason, our Board of Directors has taken steps to help ease those concerns where possible. This includes the largest-ever distribution of capital credits to GVEC member-owners. Be sure to read more about this exciting news in the announcement on the following page.
I am proud of the entire GVEC team, from our Board members to our front-line employees, and I’m honored to be a part of it. As shown time and time again, always pulls together with creative ingenuity and determination—no matter the circumstances—to get the job done and take care of our members, customers and each other.
I am always interested in your comments and feedback. Contact me by phone at 830.857.1152, by email at email@example.com or by mail at P.O. Box 118, Gonzales, Texas 78629.