University of Alberta COVID-19 Vaccination Directive

Effective September 28, 2021

Preamble

The University of Alberta’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been focused on protecting the health and safety of the university community, evidence-based, and built for the diverse campus context. The research is clear; vaccinations are the safest and most effective way to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and reduce its short and long-term impacts. National and provincial public health authorities and experts have indicated that the virus is likely to be problematic globally and locally for an extended period of time. The University has an obligation to take all possible reasonable steps to combat the spread of COVID-19. This COVID-19 Vaccination Directive is a foundational piece in the University’s long-term plans towards pandemic recovery, built to ensure the ongoing safety and resilience of our campus communities.

  1. Purpose, Duration and Review
    1. Scientific and medical evidence shows that immunization is proven to be effective and safe to protect individuals from COVID-19, and that being fully immunized is the most effective way to reduce harm and potential harm to workers, students, the health system and our communities. Public health authorities have indicated that the virus is likely to be problematic in various ways for an extended period of time. The University of Alberta has an obligation to take all possible reasonable steps to support immunization against COVID-19 to combat its spread and impacts in our university community and general community in both the immediate and longer term as well as comply with all public health orders and guidance.
    2. The general purpose of this Directive is to ensure the vaccination of our students and employees; protect the health and safety of all members of the University community and, to the extent possible, the general public; preserve workforce capacity; and enable educational programming, research, and other on-Properties opportunities to be in-person wherever reasonably possible in the circumstances.
    3. The University will continually monitor all relevant circumstances, public health measures and expert guidance as required and update this Directive and any related requirements and procedures as needed.
    4. This Directive is effective September 28, 2021. It will be reviewed by the University on a regular basis, and in any event by no later than September 1, 2022, in order to ensure that the measures outlined herein remain appropriate in consideration of the circumstances and any recommendations which may be made by the provincial and federal governments, public health officials and other experts consulted by the University from time to time.
    5. The University has the right to modify or revoke this Directive at any time, including by enhancing the protections in place and implementing supplementary directives, policies and/or procedures that may apply to specific areas, buildings, Faculties, Departments, classes, activities, or any other thing. 
  2. Application and Definitions
    1. This Directive applies to all individuals (including, but not limited to students, employees, volunteers, contracted service providers and suppliers, tenants, visitors, and guests) who attend any University Properties as defined herein, for any reason. Wherever necessary, the University will review on a case-by-case basis the extent of the Directive’s application to contracted service providers, suppliers or tenants in the context of the lease or contract in place with them, however the default is that the Directive applies to them.
    2. The following terms have the following meaning and intent:
      1. Fully Vaccinated means a status that an individual achieves 14 days after they have received the recommended number of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine approved by Health Canada or the World Health Organization, and requires the individual to maintain the recommended number and type of vaccine doses as updated and required by Health Canada thereafter.
      2. Partially Vaccinated means a status that an individual achieves 14 days after they have received the first of two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine approved by Health Canada or the World Health Organization.
      3. Proof of Vaccination means a paper or electronic vaccination record of an individual’s COVID-19 vaccination date(s) and status in a form acceptable to the University, as determined and communicated by the University from time to time. This information as to suitable format and content will normally be available on the University’s Covid-19 Vaccinations website.
      4. Properties means all University campuses, University owned, operated or leased spaces, field or contractor/partner locations where University work or study are undertaken, including but not limited to: offices; student residences; classrooms; labs; libraries; study areas; recreational and sports facilities and fields; dining halls and eateries; buildings; research lands/stations, loading areas; University vehicles; outdoor areas.
      5. Vaccination Requirements means the requirements in Section C.1 of this Directive to be Partially or Fully Vaccinated and provide Proof of Vaccination by specific dates.
  3. Directive
    1. Vaccination Requirements
      1. Until October 4, 2021, individuals may not attend on Properties unless they:
        1. Are Fully Vaccinated and have provided Proof of Vaccination to the University as directed by the University; or
        2. Undergo regular COVID-19 rapid testing in accordance with the University’s COVID-19 rapid testing requirements.
      2. Effective October 4, 2021, individuals may not attend on Properties unless they are Fully Vaccinated or Partially Vaccinated and have provided Proof of Vaccination to the University as directed by the University. Individuals who are only Partially Vaccinated must continue with the University’s COVID-19 rapid testing requirements until they are Fully Vaccinated. Others will not be entitled to use rapid testing as an alternative, except in cases of approved human rights-based accommodations.

        **Note: This means that to be considered Partially Vaccinated by October 4, 2021, the individual must by no later than September 20, 2021 have received at least their first dose of a vaccine that will qualify them to ultimately become Fully Vaccinated. 

      3. Effective November 1, 2021, individuals may not attend on Properties unless they are Fully Vaccinated and have provided Proof of Vaccination to the University as directed by the University. Individuals are required to maintain ongoing Fully Vaccinated status in the event that Health Canada updates its requirements for full vaccine protection, in which case the University will update and communicate timing requirements for maintaining Fully Vaccinated status accordingly.

        **Note: This means that to be considered Fully Vaccinated by November 1, 2021, the individual must by no later than October 18, 2021 have received their second dose of a vaccine that falls within the definition of Fully Vaccinated.

    2. Accommodation
      1. Any individual who cannot comply with the Vaccination Requirements on the basis of any ground protected by the Alberta Human Rights Act may apply for accommodation, and should do so as soon as reasonably possible. Any such applications should be made by no later than October 18, 2021, in order to ensure that individuals are permitted to attend on Properties subsequent to the November 1, 2021, effective date for full vaccination. An individual who is awaiting a decision with regard to an accommodation request will be required to comply with the University’s COVID-19 rapid testing requirements, failing which they may not attend Properties while the decision is pending.
      2. Students who are seeking accommodation may do so through the University’s Office of the Dean of Students at dosdean@ualberta.ca , and may seek information through the Student Mask, Vaccination, and/or Rapid Testing Exemption Application webpage. Employees seeking accommodation may do so through their supervisor initially. Others seeking accommodation may seek guidance on how to do so on the University’s website.
      3. All contracted service providers and suppliers providing any services on Properties or who otherwise have contact with University students, employees or visitors are required to provide staff to the University that are Fully Vaccinated.
    3. Submitting Fraudulent Information
      1. Any individual who submits fraudulent Proof of Vaccination, fraudulent documentation supporting an accommodation, a fraudulent COVID-19 test result or any other fraudulent or misleading information regarding any issue arising under this Directive will:
        1. In the case of a student, be subject to discipline pursuant to the Code of Student Behaviour (in addition to any other discipline they may be subject to if they are also an employee of the University);
        2. In the case of an employee, be subject to discipline pursuant to their applicable collective or employment agreement and policies, and/or removal of access to Properties;
        3. In the case of any other party to whom this Directive applies, be trespassed from the University on such conditions and/or for such duration as determined by the University, and otherwise subject to having their contractual or other arrangements and privileges at the University modified, suspended or terminated. 
    4. Non-Compliance
      1. Except where a human rights-based accommodation has been approved and is actively in place, any individual who fails to satisfy the Vaccination Requirements herein for any reason:
        1. Is strictly prohibited from attending in-person on any Properties for any reason, and in the case that they do attend they may be trespassed from the University on such conditions and/or for such duration as determined by the University, 
        2. In the case of an employee:
          1. If the employee has separately already legitimately begun, or has imminent pending formal approval from the University, to perform the entirety of their work duties remotely (including but not limited to approvals pursuant to any work from home programs/processes (“WFHP”) that the University has in place from time to time) the University will, upon request from the employee, consider and decide in its unfettered discretion whether the employee will be granted permission to temporarily not meet the Vaccination Requirements while they are working remotely full-time and not expected to attend any Properties, pursuant to any additional terms determined by the University. This consideration may account for, among any other factors, employees on sabbatical or other long-term leaves, how long the employee would be in non-compliance and whether and when the employee may be required to attend any Properties for any reason. Requests to work remotely in response to or as a means to avoid this Directive are not permitted except where it is considered pursuant to an approved human rights-based accommodation. 

            **Note: Nothing in this Directive: (1) shall impact upon any WFHP or be considered to create any special consideration, expectation or entitlement in that regard; (2) shall be construed to mean that any employee has any entitlement to start or continue working from home as a substitute for compliance with this Directive; or (3) affects the University’s ability or discretion to decide, in the case of any public health or similar government mandate requiring work from home, whether operational necessity requires any employee to work in person.

          2. Where no permission has been granted according to subclause (i) above, the employee may be placed on a non-disciplinary unpaid leave of absence until they satisfy the Vaccination Requirements or the University in its discretion otherwise updates its expectations of the employee or determines a different timeline.
          3. Depending on the circumstances, the employee may also be subject to discipline pursuant to their applicable collective or employment agreement and policies, and/or removal of access to Properties.
        3. In the case of a student:
          1. The student may immediately consult with their Faculty or Department to determine what, if any, arrangements can be made for the student to continue with classes, labs or other aspects of their program online or through another means that does not require attendance on Properties. Note that this consultation shall not create any duty on the University to accommodate this request or do any particular thing and does not require a particular outcome; different Faculties and Departments may have different standards, tolerances and ability to feasibly undertake such arrangements, and the consideration is subject to the University’s absolute discretion as to what, if any, alternative arrangements are feasible.
          2. Where the student cannot in their or the University’s view feasibly continue with classes, labs or other aspects of their program as a result of not being permitted to attend on Properties, or where the student otherwise wishes, the student may withdraw pursuant to policies and procedures regarding withdrawal in place at the time.
          3. Depending on the circumstances, where the student is in breach of this Directive the student may also be subject to discipline pursuant to the Code of Student Behaviour.
        4. In the case of any other party to whom this Directive applies, they may have their contractual or other arrangements and privileges at the University modified, suspended or terminated. 
    5. Privacy
      1. Vaccination information, including but not limited to Proof of Vaccination, vaccination status, requests for accommodation, and results of rapid testing, is collected, used, and stored in accordance with the University’s obligations pursuant to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (Alberta) and will only be used and disclosed in accordance with that legislation, including but not limited for the purposes of the University (including its administrators and managers with a need to know) determining and addressing whether there has been a breach or satisfaction of this Directive, whether an individual is permitted to attend on Properties as set out herein, and to address health and safety concerns on Properties including whether additional or different safety protocols are necessary in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak or otherwise.