Working during the COVID-19 pandemic

Current Status — UPDATED Jan 22, 2020


Most employees are working remotely until at least April 30, 2021.

As a result of new public health restrictions and the legal requirement to work from home, the only TEMPORARY U of A exceptions to working remotely are:

One-time and occasional visits to campus are also not permitted during these temporary safety measures, unless they meet the above criteria and are approved by a supervisor.

COVID-19 Information for the U of A Community »

Working remotely

Review information about working remotely.

Returning to campus

Learn more about returning to campus.

What to do if you are sick

If you feel sick, follow the university procedure.

Information for foreign nationals

Due to the pandemic, some restrictions now apply to foreign nationals who plan to work at the University of Alberta.

Balancing work and personal responsibilities

Flexible Work Arrangements
The goal of the university is to support all employees in fulfilling their personal and work commitments during these uncertain times. If you need flexibility with your schedule in order to meet your personal or family obligations while working from home, talk to your manager or supervisor, department chair, or director.
Managing childcare or family caregiving

Many people find themselves in caregiving roles. 

  • Consider all reasonable options for alternative family obligations; expect to outline what you have explored to your supervisor.
  • Discuss options with your supervisor for modified hours or duties, and if you are working on campus, discuss working from home.
  • If you are unable to work due to childcare or other family or personal responsibilities, you may use vacation accrual, banked time, or request leave without pay.

Whether you have children, or aging parents, or family members who require support, managing these activities while working from home can be particularly challenging. There are a number of supports available to assist those in caregiving roles as they navigate these challenges. 

Parenting/Elder Care Supports 

Caring for someone with COVID-19
  • Stay home and take all reasonable precautions to protect yourself while you care for the person. Contact Health Link at 811 for advice. 
  • Contact your supervisor to advise them of the reason for your absence. Discuss options for working from home with your supervisor.
  • Leave provisions as per the collective agreement or terms and conditions of employment (e.g. compassionate leave) will be applied.
  • You may use vacation accrual or banked time, or request leave without pay.

Leave and Pay Considerations

Refer to the Employee Leave and Pay Guidelines for information on pay continuance and leaves for each employee group during COVID-19.

Support you have access to

With any change, it is normal to experience fear, stress, anxiousness, and worry. This has been an emotionally overwhelming time for many people. Stress can be compounded by a number of factors, notably physical or mental health challenges and financial strain.

You have access to 24/7 counselling through the university’s Employee and Family Assistance Program, as well as online resources and courses (resilience, taking control of stress, mindfulness, developing resilience, power of a positive attitude, maintaining good mental health).

Personal and professional development 

Employees can benefit from a number of personal and professional courses and workshops for dealing with COVID-19.