COVID-19 Information

FAQs for Faculty and Staff

This section will be updated regularly as information becomes available. 

For all general, health and travel-related questions on COVID-19, please refer to the Government of Canada Coronovirus disease (COVID-19) website.

 

Working from Home

How do I work from home?

Please see the guidelines for working remotely for faculty and staff for information and resources.

My office could be closing. Where should I direct incoming mail to?

For those faculties, departments and units that are closed and intend to remain so for the foreseeable future, please contact the Mail Room at 306-585-4675 or mail.room@uregina.ca and request that your mail and parcel deliveries be held under further notice. Courier deliveries will continue to be accepted at Central Receiving and UR Stores RIC. If you have arranged for a delivery at your office location and cannot be there to receive it, you will need to contact your courier for alternate arrangements.

Health

What if I am ill or showing symptoms of COVID-19?

Stay home and do not come to work. Follow your standard absence reporting procedures. Employees will be able to access sick leave provisions per applicable collective agreements or out of scope provisions. CUPE 5791 operational, trades, facility, applied scientific, and security employees who have exhausted their sick leave benefits should contact their manager or supervisor regarding short-term disability benefits.

Do I need to provide a medical certificate if I have symptoms of COVID-19?

No. Health authorities do not want the public to overburden the health system; however, there will be situations when people are advised to seek medical attention.

What if I am sick for a prolonged length of time (e.g. more than 14 days)?

The University retains its right to request medical evidence according to University policy and collective agreement provisions.

What if I feel I am being asked to do work that is unusually dangerous?

You are to contact your direct supervisor immediately. The supervisor is to contact health.safety@uregina.ca. Faculty and staff have the right to refuse work where they have reasonable grounds and believe they are being asked to perform work that is unusually dangerous. A review by the UofR Occupational Health and Safety Committee will be required.

I work in Custodial Services and I’m concerned that the disinfectants and cleaners we use may not be able to kill the novel coronavirus. Has the University confirmed that our cleaning supplies and procedures are appropriate for this use?

Custodial Services has a critical role in the University’s efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on our campuses. The disinfectant used by the University is certified to kill coronaviruses and the usual cleaning products are effective in killing the virus. However, some hand sanitizing dispensers on the main campus do not contain the alcohol-based sanitizer recommended for use against coronoviruses. These dispensers have been identified with a label until the University is able to procure alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Steps to help stop or slow the spread of COVID-19, include:
  • Routinely clean frequently touched surfaces (doorknobs, push bars, light switches, countertops, handles) with cleaners typically used. Ensure that all cleaning products are used according to the directions on the label, and do not mix cleaning chemicals.
  • Protecting yourself against viruses and other illnesses.
    • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze with a tissue or the bend of your elbow
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water. Using alcohol-based hand sanitizer is the next best method
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
    • Avoid close contact with people who are ill

I work as a cleaner (or other campus job). Will my work be impacted?

For the time being, all operations and service positions, including custodial, will continue as is. Please contact your direct supervisor with any concerns that you have, and continue to stay up-to-date on any further updates on the University of Regina's COVID-19 www.uregina.ca/covid-19

If faculty and staff feel their work is unusually dangerous, they are to contact their direct supervisor immediately. The supervisor is to contact health.safety@uregina.ca. Faculty and staff have the right to refuse work where they have reasonable grounds and believe they are being asked to perform work that is unusually dangerous. A review by the U of R Occupational Health and Safety Committee will be required. For further information please see Article 20 (CUPE 5791) and Section 3-31 The Saskatchewan Employment Act.

Is the University issuing masks or respirators for custodial staff?

The U of R is not distributing masks at this time. Some members of our community may opt to wear a mask for a variety of reasons and it is their right to do so.

Using non-medical or cloth face masks

This information is for discussion on the use of non-medical face masks for preventing transmission of COVID-19. Canada’s health authorities have stated that non-medical masks have not been proven to protect the wearer, however they may help prevent your respiratory droplets from reaching others. If wearing a non-medical mask helps prevent the wearer from touching their mouth and nose, or make them feel safer, this is good. Using a non-medical cloth mask with best practices likely will not harm a person or their chance of transmission, however incorrect use may do harm and provide a false sense of security. This discussion hopes to provide guidance using information from health authorities on the risks, benefits, and best practices of employing non-medical, home-made, or cloth type masks.

Why non-medical/cloth masks?

Non-medical or cloth masks are those that may be produced at home or commercially from cloth materials and are often improvised and not standardized or tested. While health authorities and scientific literature caution against the effectiveness of these masks, members of the public may choose to wear these masks as they feel it offers additional protection. It is critical that the supply of medical masks and respiratory personal protective equipment is preserved for health care. Non-medical masks have limitations and if they are used, must be used safely.

Benefits

Using a mask may reduce frequency that a user touches their nose or mouth. When used by an ill person with a cough or sneeze, the mask helps contain droplets and particles carrying the virus, limiting their dispersion.

Risks

These masks have not been tested for effectiveness. They may not block virus carrying particles that can be transmitted by coughing, sneezing or contact. These masks are not designed for proper fit or form. Proper use of personal protective equipment is critical in effectiveness, even standardized and fit tested masks do not provide additional protection when not used properly. Wearing a mask may create a false sense of security. Wearing a mask may hamper breathing or cause additional respiratory exertion, which should be avoided when unnecessary and may cause a user to touch, adjust, or remove the mask often, increasing the number of contacts to the face.

Design principles

A mask should tightly enclose the area around the nose and mouth, from the bridge of the nose down to the chin with no gaps that occur when talking or moving. Use materials that are tightly woven but breathable, possibly double or triple layer fabric. The mask should be tolerant of moisture produced by breathing.

Guidance for proper use

• Always wash hands before and after handling face masks. Do not share masks.

• Ensure masks are well fitted around the bridge of the nose and face.

• Once a face mask is put on, avoid touching or adjusting face masks as much as possible. Never, after a period of wearing a mask, partially remove the mask from the fitted position, such as allowing it to rest on the chin or around neck.

• Untie/remove the mask by grasping away from the face (behind ears, head, or neck) and moving forward, preventing the mask from falling or contacting the face or clothing.

• Disposable masks should be disposed of properly in a lined garbage bin. Cloth items that are re-usable should be laundered with hot soapy water and dried in a hot dryer.

• Masks should be changed when saturated from condensation, are wet, or after an event that may cause contamination.

What works

While some people may choose to wear a non-medical or cloth mask, focus and attention must be given to the proven methods of preventing transmission: handwashing, social distancing, and not touching the face.

For more information visit the Health Canada COVID-19 page on Prevention and risks:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks.html?topic=tilelink

 

Should I be using non-medical or cloth face masks?

Using non-medical or cloth face masks

This information is for discussion on the use of non-medical face masks for preventing transmission of COVID-19. Canada’s health authorities have stated that non-medical masks have not been proven to protect the wearer, however they may help prevent your respiratory droplets from reaching others. If wearing a non-medical mask helps prevent the wearer from touching their mouth and nose, or make them feel safer, this is good. Using a non-medical cloth mask with best practices likely will not harm a person or their chance of transmission, however incorrect use may do harm and provide a false sense of security. This discussion hopes to provide guidance using information from health authorities on the risks, benefits, and best practices of employing non-medical, home-made, or cloth type masks.

Why non-medical/cloth masks?

Non-medical or cloth masks are those that may be produced at home or commercially from cloth materials and are often improvised and not standardized or tested. While health authorities and scientific literature caution against the effectiveness of these masks, members of the public may choose to wear these masks as they feel it offers additional protection. It is critical that the supply of medical masks and respiratory personal protective equipment is preserved for health care. Non-medical masks have limitations and if they are used, must be used safely.

Benefits

Using a mask may reduce frequency that a user touches their nose or mouth. When used by an ill person with a cough or sneeze, the mask helps contain droplets and particles carrying the virus, limiting their dispersion.

Risks

These masks have not been tested for effectiveness. They may not block virus carrying particles that can be transmitted by coughing, sneezing or contact. These masks are not designed for proper fit or form. Proper use of personal protective equipment is critical in effectiveness, even standardized and fit tested masks do not provide additional protection when not used properly. Wearing a mask may create a false sense of security. Wearing a mask may hamper breathing or cause additional respiratory exertion, which should be avoided when unnecessary and may cause a user to touch, adjust, or remove the mask often, increasing the number of contacts to the face.

Design principles

A mask should tightly enclose the area around the nose and mouth, from the bridge of the nose down to the chin with no gaps that occur when talking or moving. Use materials that are tightly woven but breathable, possibly double or triple layer fabric. The mask should be tolerant of moisture produced by breathing.

Guidance for proper use

• Always wash hands before and after handling face masks. Do not share masks.

• Ensure masks are well fitted around the bridge of the nose and face.

• Once a face mask is put on, avoid touching or adjusting face masks as much as possible. Never, after a period of wearing a mask, partially remove the mask from the fitted position, such as allowing it to rest on the chin or around neck.

• Untie/remove the mask by grasping away from the face (behind ears, head, or neck) and moving forward, preventing the mask from falling or contacting the face or clothing.

• Disposable masks should be disposed of properly in a lined garbage bin. Cloth items that are re-usable should be laundered with hot soapy water and dried in a hot dryer.

• Masks should be changed when saturated from condensation, are wet, or after an event that may cause contamination.

What works

While some people may choose to wear a non-medical or cloth mask, focus and attention must be given to the proven methods of preventing transmission: handwashing, social distancing, and not touching the face.

For more information visit the Health Canada COVID-19 page on Prevention and risks:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks.html?topic=tilelink

Travel

I have an upcoming vacation booked outside Canada. Can I still go?

The University is not canceling vacation; however, you will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon your return. Vacation or other type of leave provision (e.g. banked days or scheduled days off if applicable) must be used to cover the self-isolation period. If you do not have enough entitlements to cover this period, it will be unpaid leave. Please ensure you are aware of Government of Canada travel advisories and restrictions.

Please read: Information sheet for students, faculty, and staff arriving from international travel, including the United States

Am I still able to go on University related travel outside of the province?

All University of Regina related travel outside of the province of Saskatchewan is cancelled without a Dean’s approval.

I have recently returned from an international vacation. Will I have to self-isolate?

Any faculty or staff members who have returned from personal, international travel within the past two weeks, must self-isolate for a period of 14 days before returning to work. During the isolation period, arrangements should be made with your supervisor to work remotely from home. If you are unable to work remotely, arrangements can be made with your supervisor to cover your self-isolation period with sick leave, vacation, or unpaid leave time.

Please read: Information sheet for students, faculty, and staff arriving from international travel, including the United States

Will I be forced to use vacation days to cover my self-isolation period? Or can I use sick time?

Faculty and staff who have returned from an international vacation which began prior to 3 p.m. on March 13 will be able to use sick leave time for their 14-day self-isolation period. If you departed for personal, international travel after 3 p.m on March 13, you will be required to use vacation time or unpaid leave for the 14-day self-isolation period.

What is the status of my out of country coverage under Sun Life's Extended Health Care (EHC)?

Sun Life recently issued the attached statement

Human Resources

I am required to self-isolate in order to care for a dependent who is required to self-isolate. What do I do?

Working remotely options may be explored with your supervisor. If you cannot work remotely, you may access your sick leave provisions.

I have to care for my sick child or other family member (e.g. elder care). What do I do?

Employees may access leave-related options (e.g. Personal Leave) according to the applicable collective agreement or out of scope provision. Once this leave is exhausted, vacation or other leaves (e.g. banked days or scheduled days off if applicable) may be accessed.

I work for CUPE 2419 and am impacted by classes moving online. What happens to my pay?

Provided there is no work available, students with a salaried contract will be paid until the end of their contracts. Sudents with an hourly contract will be paid for hours already scheduled. Students should discuss availability of work with their supervisor.

I am a CUPE 5791 hourly employee. What happens to my pay if the area I work in is closed?

Hourly employees will be paid for hours already scheduled. Employees should discuss availabiltiy of work with their supervisors.

I am an hourly Sessional Lecturer. What happens to my pay during the rest of the Winter semester?

Hourly employees will be paid for hours already scheduled.

I am a Sessional Lecturer. What happens with my pay if my class is canceled for the Spring/Summer semester?

The provisions in Article 12.6 will apply.

What are the guidelines for staffing?

Please see guidelines for staffing information and resources.

Other

Can I take non-credit classes over the spring and summer?

Yes, find out more here: https://www.uregina.ca/cce/non-credit/index.html

Can I donate to the Student Emergency Fund through my APEA?

Yes, you can!

Ways to give:

  • APEA funds can be used to make donations to the University of Regina. APEA balances that are expiring as of April 30, 2020, can be donated up to May 18, 2020. All other APEA donations can continue to be made at any time.
    • For APEA accounts employees can monitor the use and budget availability of their APEAs using the University’s FAST for Finance system. FAST help for APEA can be found on the UR Source or by calling Shukria Amani, Financial Analyst APEA at 306-337-3159 to leave a message (she is working at home and regularly checks for messages).  Or by, sending an email request Shukria.Amani@uregina.ca. Please provide your APEA fund number or your Staff ID, to allow Shukria to help you quicker.
  • For payroll donations supporting the University of Regina, please complete this form and submit to make your gift.
  • For Credit Card donations please go to the Donations form page, and choose the Student Emergency Fund (COVID-19) button to make your gift.

 

Will I get a refund for my parking permit?

Given the current circumstances, permit parking fees will no longer be charged effective April 1, 2020. If you have permit parking in place on the University of Regina campus, please see below for important updates regarding payroll deductions, account credits, and parkade access.

For University of Regina staff and faculty with payroll parking deductions:

Your parking payroll deduction will no longer be applied beginning the March 29 to April 11, 2020 pay period (April 17 payday) and continuing until further notice. All permit holders will maintain their permits (the lot they are in) when payment resumes.

For staff and faculty who paid for the year (May 2019 to April 2020) by debit or credit card:

A one-month credit will be placed on your parking account. This credit will be applied against your 2020/21 parking fees once parking fees resume. Note: you will be required to come to the Parking Office to have this credit applied to 2020/21. A reminder will be provided to each permit holder by email when parking permit fees resume. As well, the Parking Services website will be updated with permit sale dates once University classes/operations resume. All permit holders will maintain their permits (the lot they are in) at that time.

Permit holders who wish to discontinue parking when fees resume may do so by emailing Parking Services at uparking@uregina.ca.

For staff and faculty with CKHS parkade access that expires April 30 or Kisik parkade fobs:

Parking Services has arranged for card or fob access expiry dates to be automatically extended to cover the campus closure period.

 

Questions?

Please review these FAQs and if you still have questions or concerns, fill out our email contact form.

Government of Canada FAQs