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UCU Scotland calls for face coverings to be mandatory indoors on university campuses

25 August 2020

Staff and students must wear face coverings when indoors on university premises, and every possible safety precaution must be in place before the academic year begins next month, UCU Scotland said today.

UCU has already urged universities to provide as much learning, teaching and student support as possible via virtual and online means to keep the need for physical interaction on university campuses to an absolute minimum. Today the union wrote to education secretary John Swinney to urge him to make face coverings mandatory*.

UCU's Scotland official, Mary Senior, said 'With students and staff due to arrive on university campuses across Scotland's towns and cities in the next few weeks, it's vital that higher education is delivered as safely as possible. We expect to see mainly virtual learning, remote lectures and tutorials, but where universities are demanding staff and students work on campus, face coverings should be worn by those who are able to wear them.

'It's really important that students can begin their studies. However, we have to ensure that our universities do not become Covid hotspots, and that the limited activity that may be taking place on campus is done safely. That's why we are urging the Scottish government to make face coverings a requirement on campus.'

*The face coverings rules would exclude people who are unable to wear face coverings due to health reasons.

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