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An official website of the United States Government.

Our Director Director's Blog

The official start of Winter is only a couple of weeks away. While we are all hoping for an uneventful winter weather season, this is the perfect time to remind Federal employees in the DC area how we decide when to change the status of the Federal Government.

There are two primary considerations we make in deciding the status of Federal Government operations for the DC area.  The first is the safety of the Federal workforce and the surrounding community.  Our employees are our most important asset.  The second is continuity of operations.  The government never really closes.  Emergency response personnel and teleworkers keep our operations going even when employees can’t physically get to work.

Preparedness is a year round activity.  It is important that agencies and employees know their personnel designations, telework policies and emergency preparedness plans before an event occurs.  The past few years have taught us that our Dismissal and Closure procedures extend beyond just winter weather emergencies and can be necessary at any time.

During a webcast earlier today, Dean Hunter, OPM's Director of Facilities, Security and Contracting, walked us through the decision-making process and Brenda Roberts, OPM’s leave administration manager, gave an overview of the policy that informs those decisions. The National Weather Service also gave us an idea of what winter has in store for us this year.

We want to ensure that Federal workers stay safe and that we continue to serve the American people even during times of difficult weather events. And the best way to make sure that happens is for everyone to be informed.

So, please take a few minutes to watch our video below and read the updated Dismissal and Closure Guide on the OPM website. And if you didn't get a chance to tune in to the full webcast, it will be available soon on our YouTube channel.



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