Preparing for Potential LIRR Strike

July 11, 2014

Dear Colleagues,

As you may be aware, a potential Long Island Railroad (LIRR) strike may commence on or about July 20. While this is not yet a certainty, we want to encourage preparations for our faculty and staff.

The Emergency Management Operations Team and Columbia University Human Resources are working together to monitor the situation, and we will continue to share information with you. The MTA currently reports that it anticipates significantly longer commute times if a strike occurs, so please take this into account as you make plans. Next week, we will also write directly to those of you who live in Nassau and Suffolk counties with additional information and resources.

At this time, we recommend the following to those who may be directly impacted by the strike and their supervisors:

  • Those of you who live in areas served by the LIRR should identify yourselves to your supervisors to help the planning process.
  • Managers or supervisors with team members who rely on the LIRR should initiate a conversation to explore options and make appropriate arrangements.
  • Consistent with University Policy and operational needs, we do encourage you to consider using vacation or personal days should a strike occur.
  • We also encourage, consistent with University Policy and respective security and operational needs, telecommuting arrangements.
    • CUIT offers several resources and guidance for managing these arrangements securely.
    • Those who rely on local IT services should coordinate with your respective support teams.
  • For those unable to telecommute, carpooling, either to the MTA subway system or to the University, may be an effective option. The Office of Work/Life hosts an online carpooling bulletin board for members of the Columbia community.

You may also wish to visit the MTA’s LIRR strike plan web page for additional information and updates.

As the situation changes, we will continue to update the Columbia Preparedness website, http://preparedness.columbia.edu and the Columbia homepage, www.columbia.edu. The Columbia University Medical Center homepage, www.cumc.columbia.edu, will also be updated.

Again, early next week we will write directly to those who live in Nassau and Suffolk Counties with additional information and resources. We all hope that a strike will not occur, but recognize the need to be prepared.

Sincerely,

Joe Ienuso
Executive Vice President, Columbia University Facilities and Operations
On Behalf of the Emergency Management Operations Team