University of Winnipeg strengthens vaccine mandate

The University of Winnipeg appears in an undated image.

The University of Winnipeg (U of W) has strengthened the vaccine mandate it announced last month.

Earlier in the week, the school announced that all University of Winnipeg Collegiate high school students need to be fully vaccinated to attend campus. Anyone using the indoor recreation facilities at the university also must be fully vaccinated.

In a statement, the U of W notes that at this time rapid testing won’t be available as an option to gain access to campus due to logistical issues. The school is considering a process for addressing medical and human rights-based exemptions. However, this process won’t be ready in time for the start of the fall term.

Any questions about human rights-based exemptions can be directed to the human rights and diversity officer at s.belding@uwinnipeg.ca.

“We are firmly committed to ensuring a safe return to campus and we know that getting vaccinated is the way forward,” said University of Winnipeg Interim President and Vice-Chancellor James Currie in a statement.

“Strengthening our vaccine mandate now will speed our return to normalcy. Like all organizations, we are adapting quickly to evolving circumstances and will do our best to support affected students with changes to their academic schedules if they are not vaccinated.”

The university previously announced that faculty, staff and students will need to be fully vaccinated to be on campus, and will need to present one-time proof of vaccination.

There will be a vaccination verification centre at Riddell Hall from Aug. 30 to Sept. 10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The centre will be closed from Sept. 4 to 6.

Those who are fully vaccinated but can’t provide proof or who are partially vaccinated and scheduled to complete their vaccination will have to sign a self-declaration form. From there, they will receive a temporary access sticker, which will be valid until Oct. 15. Campus access will be taken away unless proof of full vaccination is provided by that date.