UBC president announces support for mandatory masks, vaccinations

Aug 13 2021, 6:24 pm

It seems that University of British Columbia (UBC) staff and students have finally been heard by UBC leadership, as they have now announced support for some of the measures the UBC Alma Mater Society requested weeks ago.

The requests included mandatory masks in indoor spaces, and a vaccine mandate in student residences.

A statement was issued from President and Vice Chancellor Santa J. Ono, which had the backing of the university’s Board of Governors.

The UBC Alma Mater Society argued that UBC officials were only doing the “bare minimum” when it came to the return-to-campus plan.

Among the measures UBC is introducing, rapid vaccination and testing clinics will be set up at both UBC campuses.

“I know that some of you are concerned about ventilation of classrooms, labs and other indoor spaces. I can assure you that we are doubling our efforts to ensure university spaces meet or exceed guidelines set out by WorkSafeBC, the BC Centre for Disease Control and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.”

While the statement didn’t say if mandatory masks and vaccines are coming for sure, it does suggest that consultation with BC health officials has begun on how they could implement these steps this September.

“I want to assure you that we understand your concerns and, supported by the Board of Governors, we are engaging with the provincial government on these issues.”

“We are taking every step possible to ensure the health and safety of every member of our community.”

The statement suggests that more information will be released in the coming weeks.

Amir AliAmir Ali

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