UWinnipeg’s response to COVID-19
Posted on: 03/10/20 | Author: Communications | Categories: All Posts
The health and safety of UWinnipeg faculty, staff, students, and visitors to campus is a top priority. Students can confidently continue their studies and staff should continue to come to work.
The risk of acquiring COVID-19 in Manitoba remains very low, and there are currently no laboratory-confirmed cases identified in the province.
UWinnipeg is actively addressing the situation and will continue to provide updates on The University of Winnipeg’s main website as information becomes available. We have professional staff who have developed plans to maintain campus operations and ensure the safety of students, faculty, staff, and visitors.
For tips on staying healthy, travel information, and other resources, please visit the Manitoba government’s coronavirus website. The University of Winnipeg is continuing to follow the advice of the Public Health Agency of Canada and Manitoba Public Health.
Travel related to University business
In light of the health risks posed by COVID-19, UWinnipeg strongly encourages that you err on the side of caution when making decisions about travel. If you or someone you are supervising has upcoming travel plans:
- Refer to Health Canada, Global Affairs Canada, and Canada Travel for ongoing travel advisory updates to inform your planning.
- Discuss travel plans with your department Chair / supervisor and assess any health, environmental, civil, legal, or any other risks you may encounter. Specifically, identify the predominant risks that you will encounter, analyze the exposure to the risk, and identify actions and precautions you can take to prevent or decrease impacts.
- Advise UWinnipeg’s Safety Office by calling 204.786.9894
- If you are a researcher, funded by the tri-council, it has recently been announced that reimbursement of non-refundable travel fees from agency funds is acceptable considering the impacts of COVID-19. This applies to the travel of both principal investigators and research personnel, when cancellation occurs as described above. Please contact the Research Office for more information.
- If you are an employee who is planning to personal travel, contact Blue Cross to confirm the area you want to travel to is currently covered under your health travel insurance plan. From Winnipeg, call 204.775.0151 (8:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. weekdays).
There are currently no laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba. In accordance with advice provided by Manitoba’s provincial medical health officer, only if you are returning from travel to affected areas:
- Monitor yourself and those close to you for symptoms similar to the flu or common cold such as coughing, sneezing, sore throat, fever, or difficulty breathing.
- If individuals need to self-isolate because they are experiencing flu symptoms, they should confirm symptoms with Health Links by calling 204-788-8200 or toll-free 1-888-315-9257, or a medical doctor/health provider.
- If a student reports they will be missing class due to self-isolation, the student must contact Accessibility Services at 786.9771 or by e-mailing: email@example.com
- For any concerns related to international students, contact International, Immigrant, and Refugee Student Services (IIRSS) at 204.786.9469 or firstname.lastname@example.org. They will be able to help and provide advice regarding student permits and supports available.
- In addition to established sanitization stations on campus, extra sanitation wipes have been distributed. These specialized wipes meet provincial Health and Safety standards. If you require wipes in your area, contact UWinnipeg’s Safety Office at 204.786.9894. Cleaning staff are cleaning high traffic areas more frequently.
- If any employee is required to takes a sick day, or work from home in respect to self-isolation, supervisors must advise Human Resources at email@example.com
- If you are a supervisor, ensure your staff has reviewed the travel guidelines outlined in this communication to make informed decisions before travelling, and to ensure the right individuals are informed.
- As the situation evolves, it may be necessary for conferences, events, and gatherings to be cancelled. At this point, no University of Winnipeg events have been cancelled. If this decision is made, we will update UWinnipeg’s main website.
- If students live on campus and are self-isolating or are returning from travel, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 204.786.9900.
- Extra cleaning of residence space is taking place to ensure appropriate hygiene.
- There are safe spaces available for students living on campus to self-isolate if required.
- Student residence contracts will not be penalized due to COVID-19.
Members of the UWinnipeg community are reminded to take precautions that can help avoid contracting and spreading COVID-19 or other respiratory illness. These common prevention measures include: regular hand washing with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleanser; covering your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing; and avoiding contact with anyone showing symptoms of a respiratory illness, such as coughing or sneezing. It is important to wash your hands:
- after coughing or sneezing;
- when caring for a sick person;
- before, during, and after food preparation;
- before eating;
- after toilet use; and
- when hands are visibly dirty.
It is important to remember that every member of our university community should be treated with respect and dignity. All members of the UWinnipeg community should follow the Respectful Workplace and Learning Environment policy, which outlines the expectation that no person should be subject to discrimination based on their perceived disability, race, ancestry, place of origin, or otherwise.
For links to more information, review the following FAQ’s, and visit the Province of Manitoba and Government of Canada websites. These sites are being updated regularly with up-to-date, accurate information.