March 20th - A Message from CEO Michael Waters [COVID-19 Employee Update]

With this crazy week nearly behind us, I’m deeply grateful to you all for your willingness to go above and beyond, your flexibility in adapting to new work arrangements, and your compassion in supporting our residents, homebuyers, tenants and one another. I’m proud to be part of a team that’s riding this wave of uncertainty with thoughtfulness and care.

This week, the Canadian Government announced an Emergency Care Benefit and the US signed the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act along with Emergency Paid Sick Leave to help impacted employees when they need it most.

As a leadership team, we’re continuing to monitor this crisis and are in constant communication with one another. While our senior leaders will continue to share details within their respective business units, here is a summary of happenings across the company:

    • Our Communities Canada construction teams are currently operating and providing service as efficiently as possible. Sales Centres are open by appointment only and Design Centres are closed to walk-in traffic.
    • In the US, construction site operations have not been materially disrupted to date. Sales Offices and Design Centers are accessible by appointment only.
    • Within our Apartments business, Regional Offices are closed to the public with minimal rotating shifts arranged. The Call Centre is operating remotely as is our Furnished Suite team.
    • IT, Accounts Payable and Reception team members from Corporate Offices are now set up to work from home.
    • If you’ve had difficulty dialing in to our conference lines, thank you for your patience as we consider solutions with our telecommunications providers who are experiencing very high volumes. If you’ve forwarded your desktop phone, please submit an IT Service Desk ticket to have it disabled. Change your voice greeting to direct callers to your cell phone.

With remote working arrangements now in place for most, we continue to address scenarios faced by those who are not in a position to work from home. As I mentioned earlier this week, over the short term we will provide paid leave wherever needed. For questions regarding this, please reach out to your HR Business Partner.

There’s no doubt you’re feeling uncertain about where this pandemic will take us. We’re fortunate to have access to COVID-19 support tools that can help, including:

In light of all that is going on around us, I’m proud to share a heartwarming story coming out of Calgary this week. Glenmore Estates Property Manager, Joelargen Aradanas and Maintenance Service Lead Hand, Irvin Aradanas took it upon themselves to deliver groceries to a quarantined mother and daughter duo to ensure they had everything they needed. Thank you Joy and Irvin, for this generous gesture. I’m sure it meant the world to them.

And to end on other good news, our Communities USA team recently accepted an impressive ten awards for One Particular Harbour Margaritaville from the Manatee-Sarasota Building Industry Association’s 2020 Parade of Homes. Congratulations!

Thank you again for all you’re doing to support one another and our business. I’ll continue to keep you updated as this crisis evolves and the situation stabilizes and ultimately improves. To refer to any of the information that has been shared thus far, you’ll find it consolidated on TreeHouse.

And if you’ve heard a ‘good news’ story of support, please send a note to [email protected]. In lieu of our weekly issue of Minto Moments, I look forward to personally reading and sharing these stories directly with you.