COVID-19 Update: May 13, 2021

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The following updates are provided by the Return-to-Campuses steering committee.

Province extends stay-at-home order
The provincial government announced today that it will extend the current stay-at-home order until at least June 2. All those who can work from home are required to continue doing so.

If you must come to a U of G facility to complete your job duties, speak to your manager or supervisor about accessing your workspace. COVID-19 safety protocols must be strictly followed at all times, including when occupying break rooms or when travelling in a vehicle for work.

New Public Health rules on face coverings in the workplace
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health has updated its Section 22 Order on face coverings. Under the new updates, individuals are required to wear a face covering while working alone in a cubicle or at a workstation, even when physical distance can be maintained or when barriers are in place.

Previously, face coverings were not required indoors when individuals were separated by physical barriers (e.g., cubicle walls, Plexiglas) or were able to stay 2 metres apart from others.

Under the updated Section 22 Order, those working inside an office with the door closed and no others present can remove their face covering. Other instances when face coverings can be removed are explained in the Practices section of our Return to Campuses website.

Individuals who must work within 2 metres of others without a physical barrier in place are required to wear medical masks. Medical masks will be provided to those working in such an environment.

Learn more about the difference between medical and non-medical masks on the Environmental Health and Safety website.

What to do if you feel unwell after a COVID-19 vaccination

According to Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health, some individuals may experience side effects after receiving their COVID-19 vaccination. These side effects can resemble symptoms of COVID-19, and normally subside within one to two days.

According to Public Health, side effects may include:

  • Pain or swelling in your arm
  • Sore or swollen glands under your arm
  • Fever or chills
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Sore muscles or joints
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Follow all post-vaccination guidance you receive from the administering health-care provider.

Remember: You must not come to any U of G facility or attend on-site work if you are feeling unwell, including experiencing side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine.

Everyone must complete the U of G COVID-19 Screening Form daily before coming to any U of G facility and follow its direction. If the screening form indicates you must stay home, or if you are working from home and experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, notify your manager or supervisor and complete the U of G COVID-19 Employee Self-Declaration Form.

Managers and Supervisors: As more of our community members get vaccinated, you may see an increase in employee absences for those experiencing side effects. Please be aware that you may need to address business continuity issues depending on the number of absences in your area.

New Vaccination FAQ page
A new Vaccination FAQ page has been added to U of G’s COVID-19 website. Check the page for information about getting vaccinated in Guelph.

All those over the age of 12 who live or work in the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health area are now eligible to pre-register for a COVID-19 vaccination. If you work in Guelph but live elsewhere, you can pre-register in the WDG Public Health system and enter U of G’s address in the section that asks for employer details.

Learn more about vaccine eligibility and booking your appointment on the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health website.

Eye protection in the workplace
Under the province’s COVID-19 response framework, eye protection (i.e., goggles or a face shield) is not required for most work situations at U of G. The use of eye protection for those who must work within 2 metres of others will be determined by departments based on operational needs.

In determining whether employees require eye protection, departments should consider the latest advice from Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health. WDG Public Health has indicated that an employee must isolate if:

  • Over a 24-hour period, they spend more than 15 minutes within 2 metres of someone who tests positive for COVID-19, and
  • They were not separated by a physical barrier (e.g., cubicle wall, Plexiglas), and
  • The employee was not wearing eye protection.

This new isolation requirement could have business continuity impacts on departments.

Disposable face shields are available on request to those who must work within 2 metres of others. Departments can order face shields through the Physical Resources website.

Face shields should not be used when driving.

Learn more about eye protection in the workplace on the Environmental Health and Safety website.

New Fall 2021 website
U of G is planning for a vibrant on-campus experience this fall! Learn more about what we expect campus to look like this September on our Fall 2021 at the University of Guelph website.

The University’s COVID-19 website is your best source of information on U of G’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Return to Campuses website provides essential information for those coming to campus. If you need to be on campus, make sure you complete the U of G COVID-19 Screening Form every day before you arrive.