COVID-19 Update for the Campus Community

December 11, 2020 2:30 PM

On December 11, 2020 the Ontario government announced the Middlesex-London Health Unit region is moving from the orange (restrict) to red (control) level of the COVID-19 response framework, effective Monday, December 14, 2020. 

There is no impact on classes or exams at this time. In-person structured teaching, instruction and exams can continue to take place with physical distancing limitations. The total number of students in the space cannot exceed 50.

Western Libraries and study spaces remain open, and research activities can continue. Faculty and staff can continue to access campus to carry out work and meet and serve our students.

In the red level, Ontario gathering limits have been reduced to five people indoors and 25 people outdoors – however, we strongly encourage all social gatherings be postponed.

All meetings on campus are limited to 10 people with physical distancing.

The move from orange to red also impacts a few specific areas on campus, including:

Residences

Residence dining halls remain open, but dining seating areas will be limited to a maximum of 10 people. All residence study halls will remain open and operate in accordance with physical distancing limitations. Common spaces that are open (floor lounges, study rooms) may have revised capacity limits. Additional information about residences can be found here.

Sport & Recreation

Campus Recreation facilities will be restricted to groups no larger than 10 people indoors (gym, weight room, ice rink, etc.) and 25 people outdoors. Three metres of physical distancing is in place. Additional information about Campus Recreation including hours of operation can be found here.

Music

The Don Wright Faculty of Music and University Machine Shop are creating barriers that will be placed around students who play brass and winds instruments and will be implementing the required safety protocols for singers. This will impact ensembles, courses, and studio instruction that involve these students in music making settings.

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Please note these are the directives at this time and this information could change quickly. We continue to work closely with federal, provincial and local health officials, and should things change, we will communicate with you via email, social media and the university’s dedicated COVID-19 website.

Staying safe over the holidays

Recent news of approved vaccines gives us optimism as we head into the new year. However, with COVID-19 cases on the rise locally and across the country, it is more important than ever that we stay vigilant and take care of ourselves, each other and our community.

The Middlesex-London Health Unit is asking individuals to drastically reduce close contacts with others for 14 days before travelling. This will lower your risk of COVID-19 exposure, as well as the risk of transmitting COVID-19 to others.

The health unit also strongly advises that holiday gatherings be conducted virtually. We recognize the importance of connecting with family and friends, but we encourage you to avoid indoor gatherings and find alternative ways to connect.

I am extremely proud of how our faculty, staff and students alike have responded to the pandemic. You have shown incredible commitment, resilience, ingenuity and empathy for one another during these challenging times.

On behalf of Western’s leadership team, thank you for your support and for continuing to prioritize the health and safety of our community.

Sincerely,

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Lynn Logan

Vice-President (Operations and Finance)