Updated: November 17, 2020

What you need to know about the next phase of resuming work activities on campus or in the field

Researchers, instructors, and administrative personnel may APPLY to resume activity on campus or in the field in accordance with Provincial, University, and unit-level guidelines.  The expectation is that all work that can be done remotely will continue to be done remotely – this application procedure applies to essential work that cannot be readily accommodated remotely.  Essential return-to-work activities include work that can be grouped into four general portfolios:

  1. Research on Campus – e.g., researchers that require access to critical laboratory equipment or bench work.
  2. Fieldwork (research- and teaching-related activities) – e.g., researchers conducting field work; instructors filming virtual fieldtrips.
  3. Teaching Activities (on-campus preparatory work for the Summer, 2021 semester) – e.g., instructors filming lab demonstrations for Fall, 2021 courses.
  4. Administrative Work – e.g., staff supporting the above activities (on campus).

How to apply to resume activities on campus or in the field

On this FENV COVID-19 Resources webpage, members of our Faculty will be able to complete and submit the required forms, and link to faculty and university resources via the redirect buttons above.  

Guiding Principles:

  • The Return-to-Work application and COVID-19 Safety Plan covers you and your personnel; the COVID-19 Safety Plan needs to be completed for all spaces that will be used or occupied (e.g.  research and teaching labs, shared space, office, and field sites) and include mandatory maximum occupancy numbers allowed for compliance.
  • If you are not a faculty member or supervisor, ensure you are included in the relevant supervisor’s COVID-19 Safety Plan.
  • There are special considerations for field work and these guidelines are available via the FENV COVID-19 Guidelines webpage.
  • Everyone (faculty, staff, and students) who intends to visit campus or work in the field, for any reason, must complete the SFU Safety and Risk Services COVID-19 Safety Training module on Canvas.
  • All employees, including faculty members, must complete a daily self-assessment before entering their workspace, whether they are required to work on campus or choose to work on campus. The link to B.C.’s COVID-19 self-assessment tool is here:  The Faculty of Environment has been providing hard copies of a SFU FENV COVID-19 Self-Assessment Check List (to be posted at the entrance to each work space) and the SFU FENV COVID-19 Self-Assessment Check List Sign-in Sheet (records retained within each work space) with every approved return-to-work application – we are continuing to provide these documents as a back-up to the BC COVID-19 App.
  • If applicable to your work, there are special considerations for access to Science Stores, Science Receiving, and the Science Technical Centre - access to these ancillary services must be coordinated through the Faculty of Science (there are provisions in the application procedure to identify and address these specific needs).

After submission, approval is first considered by your Chair/Director and then by the Dean. For research activities on campus and field work, approval from the Office of the Vice President, Research is also required. Notification of the decision will be sent in a timely matter. If your request is approved, you (and all personnel listed on your application) will receive an email from the Dean’s office which will include the following:

  • Your approved application package (approved Return-to-Work application, a return copy of your Covid-19 Safety Plan, and return copies of any SFU Safety and Risk Services COVID-19 Safety Training certificates).
    • your Covid-19 Safety Plan must be posted within your workspace(s).
    • you must also submit your Covid-19 Safety Plan to SRS HERE.
  • A compliance sign for your door indicating that your space has been approved for use; for convenience, this signage will also indicate your workspace maximum occupancy allowance.  Additional useful signage for your workspaces may be found HERE.
  • A self-assessment document package - a self-assessment checklist to be posted at the entrance to your workspace(s) and a self-assessment sign-in sheet that is to be posted within your workspace(s). The latter must be signed daily by any personnel entering the space.

Compliance to the rules and guidelines as set out by the Province, the University and your Department, is mandatory to keep people safe. If you and your team do not comply with these guidelines, your permission to access campus and field sites will be revoked.

All CSPs are subject to review by the VP-Research, VP-Academic and WorkSafe BC, and will be made available upon request.

Additional Context to the Resumption of Work Activities

 The prospect of returning to campus may raise health concerns. Please keep the following key considerations in mind when planning to resume activity.

  • The health and well-being of everyone is our primary consideration.
  • We are not instructing anyone to return to campus. Everyone is encouraged to continue to work remotely, where practicable until further notice.
  • The option to return to campus is voluntary and we will not tolerate coercion of graduate students or staff to return.
  • If you have questions regarding any return-to-work procedures, please contact the Dean or the Associate Director, Facilities and Technical Operations.

This process aligns with the University, Provincial Health Authority and WorkSafe BC directives and we urge you to take the health and safety protocols seriously. COVID-19 remains a prevalent public health issue in the community and safe practices will help us minimize risk on campus and in the field.

Naomi Krogman
Dean, Faculty of Environment