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President's Update - August 24, 2021

Mandatory Vaccination Policy

August 24, 2021 – Don Bureaux

Good afternoon,

I want to thank you for your continued support as we work to keep our community safe in anticipation of a return to on campus learning and working over the coming weeks.

Vaccination is the best protection available against COVID-19, especially as we look forward to Phase 5 and the further easing of public health restrictions. With this in mind, NSCC will make COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for all employees and students.

We firmly believe a vaccinated population is a vital part of keeping us, our friends, families and communities protected from the virus and the developing, fast-moving variants. Students and employees will have until Tuesday, October 12 to provide proof of vaccination.

We know this will raise some questions and even concerns within our community. Please be patient with us as we work through this new policy and its application. As soon as details are confirmed, they will be communicated.

We know that the first day of classes is just around the corner. Here is what we know so far about measures that we are introducing to support our mandatory vaccine policy:

New measures: Vaccine clinics, asymptomatic rapid testing

  • We will support our community to work towards a goal of being double vaccinated by Tuesday, October 12, 2021 at the latest and are encouraging everyone to book their appointments well before that date.
  • Proof of vaccination will be necessary. We are finalizing details on how vaccination records will be submitted and will ensure the privacy of individuals is respected.
  • We are working with Public Health to host pop-up vaccine clinics at campuses – where possible – to assist employees and students to reach that goal and help increase the vaccination rates of the broader community. Campuses will provide details specific to their dates/times. COVID-19 vaccine appointments can be booked through Nova Scotia Public Health
  • Testing is an important surveillance tool. We will be making voluntary asymptomatic rapid testing available on campuses for students and employees.
  • Please note: As of Tuesday, October 12, students and employees who cannot or choose not to be vaccinated for medical, religious or other reasons will be required to be tested for COVID-19 twice per week and wear masks on campus.

We are working on further details and will continue to provide you with updates as we have more information.

Reminders: Residence guidelines, supports, self-assessment

  • Our three residences are also guided by a policy that supports the safety of those students staying in and employees working at those sites. This includes treating the residents as a bubble with no visitors (other than support for move-in day), maintaining mask use in common areas, providing regular self-testing and access to vaccine clinics.
  • We know this continues to be a challenging moment in time as news continues to focus on the pandemic here and around the world. We always encourage our community to access supports so important now more than any other time:
  • Employees - Employee health and wellness (log-in required)
  • Students - Student counselling and wellness overview (log-in required)
  • Mask wearing and cleaning efforts by Facilities staff and each of us continue to be key measures to contain the virus until we receive further guidance regarding the Province’s Phase 5. If you need accommodations regarding mask wearing or vaccinations, employees should speak with their supervisor and students should check in with Student Services
  • The self-assessment when entering buildings is also a foundational part of staying alert – that includes staying offsite if sick or if told to self-isolate or quarantine.
  • All this information and more is available at nscc.ca/covid19

We’re all in this together

We know the ever-changing guidelines are sometimes challenging but we are here to support our students and employees along the way. Our priority is your safety and your success in your work and studies. We are continually monitoring and adjusting our measures and guidelines based on advice from Public Health and any efforts needed to support our return to greater in-person learning and working this fall so that return to campus is done safely. If we need to change course to keep our communities safe, we will.

As always, it is thanks to your cooperation and support that we are able to return to more in-person learning and working. We’re all in this together and must stay vigilant so that we can remain on a positive path. Please stay safe, stay informed and stay connected.

With gratitude,

Don Bureaux

Last updated on: September 03, 2021 01:33 PM