Approach to managing Covid, signage, and international travel - message to staff

Dear colleagues,

Recent changes to national guidance around the use of face coverings and testing, which we updated our community on last week, was a significant moment in our ongoing return to normal university life.

Our campus-based activities continue to increase and it’s great to see more staff and students on campus. While this return to a new normality is welcome, it remains important we all continue to observe responsible and appropriate behaviours, recognising that everyone is adapting at their own pace based on their personal circumstances.

Changes to Government guidelines presents an opportunity to consider our approach to managing the risk of Covid, and following discussion at this week’s Campus Planning Group (CPG) we wish to update you on our current activities as well as some changes to current practice.

Covid Signage

Work has begun to remove Covid-related directional and behaviour signage, banners, and other control measures such as floor tape and designated seating stickers. This will take several weeks and may leave residue and marks which are not easily removed. Please do not attempt to remove any signage which is glued onto doors or walls, as these should be removed by the Estates and Facilities team to limit the risk of permanent damage.

Hygiene awareness stickers at key touchpoints will remain, as these now form part of the University’s general cleaning processes.

International travel

A review is underway to determine what enhancements might be made to the University’s Overseas Travel Policy and Guidance based on lessons learned over the course of the pandemic.

While this is ongoing, individuals will no longer be required to complete the Covid-19 specific travel approval form, however staff should refamiliarise themselves with the Overseas Travel Policy and Guidance. This includes the requirement that when booking international travel, staff must organise University insurance BEFORE travel. Personal insurance does not provide staff with the required cover when traveling for business purposes. 

University insurance ensures staff are supported overseas, while the insurance database supports our ability to respond swiftly to any crisis or incident, identifying which staff or students may be affected.

In addition, staff are strongly encouraged to book their travel through the University travel provider – Diversity Travel, and you are also encouraged to continue to build in contingency planning as part of any international travel plans.

Public access to University buildings

Members of the public will be allowed access to University buildings where appropriate. The Sir Duncan Rice Library will return to normal arrangements, welcoming members of the public in the evenings and at weekends until the end of the assessment period, after which it will be open to the public at all times.

Hygiene measures

Hand sanitiser dispensers will remain throughout campus and will be refilled by the Facilities team.

Wipes in teaching classrooms and next to multi-function printers and copiers (MFD), and the provision of disposable facemasks across campus will remain for the time being but are likely to be phased out over the summer months with revised arrangements being considered for the start of the next academic year.

Please contact the Estates and Facilities Helpdesk if you have any queries - estates@abdn.ac.uk

Covid risk assessments

Covid risk assessments are no longer required, instead colleagues should undergo standard risk assessment procedures while planning for events or other activities where a risk assessment is a requirement.

Events

The previous requirement to seek approval from the Events Group for events where more than 100 could attend has been removed.  Event organisers are no longer required to complete a Covid risk assessment or seek approval from their Head of School or Director to plan an event.

 

The steps outlined above indicate that the journey our community has been on together these past two years is nearing an end, albeit accompanied by the new reality that the University and society at large has to live with Covid-19.

On behalf of CPG, we want to thank everyone for all their efforts and engagement with us during this period, which have helped us navigate the pandemic in a way that has seen our community emerge stronger and more united for the experience.

This was especially evident in the excellent partnership working between Academic and Professional Services staff that was so crucial to our ability to continue to operate in the best interests of our entire University community.

While we remain vigilant, CPG will now meet less frequently, however we will update you on any significant new information with implications for our University activities. Our thanks again to you all.


Best wishes

Karl & Tracey
 

Karl Leydecker
Senior Vice-Principal

Tracey Slaven
University Secretary and Chief Operating Officer

Search News

Browse by Month

2022

  1. Jan
  2. Feb
  3. Mar
  4. Apr
  5. May There are no items to show for May 2022
  6. Jun There are no items to show for June 2022
  7. Jul There are no items to show for July 2022
  8. Aug There are no items to show for August 2022
  9. Sep There are no items to show for September 2022
  10. Oct There are no items to show for October 2022
  11. Nov There are no items to show for November 2022
  12. Dec There are no items to show for December 2022