July 22, 2021
For Immediate Release
Waterloo – Wilfrid Laurier University will require students living in residence during the 2021-2022 academic year to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The measure, strongly recommended by local public health authorities in Waterloo Region and endorsed by the Brant County Health Unit, will apply to residences across all campus communities beginning this fall.
Students will be encouraged to have their first dose of a Health Canada approved vaccine prior to their move-in date, with Laurier recommending they receive it at least 14 days before arriving on campus. Those who are unable to get vaccinated before moving in will have one week following their move-in date to receive their first dose, with the university helping to facilitate access to vaccines, subject to supply. Students in residence who are unable to be vaccinated due to medical reasons or other grounds protected under the Ontario Human Rights Code will be able to submit a request for accommodation.
Public health experts have established that vaccines are a safe and effective way to protect individuals and those around them from serious illness due to COVID-19. On-campus residences are high density, contain shared common spaces, and may present challenges to effective isolation should a student become infected. For these reasons, the highest two-dose vaccination coverage achievable among the student population will be the strongest tool to prevent local outbreaks in the upcoming academic year.
Of those who responded to a recent survey, 95 per cent of incoming residence students indicated they have received or intend to receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine before the fall.
“Laurier students have been doing their part to keep each other and their communities safe. Our students have told us they will be coming back to campus vaccinated,” said Ivan Joseph, vice-president: student affairs. “We are listening to the science and following the recommendation of public health to move to mandatory vaccinations for students living in residence. This will allow us to get back to the thriving campus community we all want.”
Students are asked to keep all emails, receipts and records pertaining to their vaccinations so that they can confirm their vaccination status. All personal information provided, including information regarding being vaccinated, will be handled in compliance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Students who plan to live in residence will receive further details on how to provide confirmation of vaccination and how to request an exemption.
Laurier will facilitate access to vaccines for students who require first or second doses. The Brant County Health Unit (BCHU) vaccination clinic continues operating at One Market on Laurier’s Brantford campus. Visit the BCHU website for more information.
The Student Wellness Centre on Laurier’s Waterloo campus is also hosting COVID-19 immunization clinics for students, faculty and staff throughout the summer and fall. Visit the Health and Wellness webpage for more information about the clinics.
Students in Ontario, including international students, can consult Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccination website for information on how to book a vaccination appointment.
“As part of our commitment to keep our community safe, we encourage all members of the Laurier community to get vaccinated as soon as they are eligible,” Joseph said. “We are looking forward to a safe return to in-person activities across our campuses this fall.”
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Claire Bruner-Prime, Communications and Media Relations Officer
External Relations, Wilfrid Laurier University
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