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Upcoming Academic Terms: Info and Plans

Use and supply of medical and non-medical masks/face coverings

Updated on Aug 10
Tags: health and safety, all updates

Members of the University community,

As we draw closer to the beginning of the Fall 2020 term, the University of Regina’s top priority continues to be the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff as we navigate our way through the COVID-19 pandemic.

The University is working closely with our Health, Safety and Wellness team, as well as our sector partners and health officials, to ensure a proactively cautious approach that reduces risk to students, faculty, staff, and community members including healthcare workers.

We would once again like to remind our University community that the use of masks/face coverings in shared, public, indoor spaces on our campuses is strongly recommended, although not mandatory at this time. This includes shared research spaces. Non-medical, disposable, or reusable cloth masks are effective at reducing droplet and aerosol transmission, especially when worn by asymptomatic, infected individuals. Modelling and experimental evidence shows that masks slow the spread of coronavirus.

The University has standardized disposable, medical masks for our front-line, essential workers and researchers to use as required if their work or learning activity doesn’t allow for two-metre distancing. This includes researchers working in labs, campus security, custodial staff, and our student monitors who are managing the three entrances on our main campus. Anyone else visiting campus is strongly encouraged to protect these people from the possibility of infection by wearing a non-medical mask/face covering in common areas. Of course, we continue to ask people not to come to our campuses unless it is necessary to do so.

Here are some other considerations around the use of masks/face coverings at the U of R:

  • Masks will be required for researchers under certain circumstances in Phase 3 of the Return to Research Plan targeted to launch on September 1. Further details will be made available at that time. In the meantime, researchers should refer to the current Phase 2 plan which strongly recommends the use of masks in shared research spaces which can be found at https://www.uregina.ca/research/policies-forms-top/Return-to-Research-Plan-2.SG.pdf;
  • The Academic Incremental Recovery (AIR) group is reviewing the use of masks/face coverings for students and faculty who will be participating in the limited number of in-person, low-density course components (labs, studios), as well as students who require access to designated computers and solo study spaces in the Archer Library. More details will be provided as they become available;
  • The University is working towards sourcing a supply of branded, non-medical, reusable, cloth masks once our Health, Safety and Wellness team determines the standards that need to be met;
  • Further information about masks is provided on the University website: Mask Guidelines

As surges of the COVID-19 infection in various locations around the globe indicate, this virus is highly infectious, and we continue to learn about its vectors of transmission. The University’s position on mask usage on our campuses may change in the coming weeks. Rest assured that any decisions will be based on sound medical advice from health authorities and will be communicated to students, faculty and staff without delay.

Sincerely,

Dave Button

Vice-President (Administration)