Herts should provide tests not bar students from contracted accommodation

Herts should provide tests not bar students from contracted accommodation

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Herts Petition started this petition to University of Hertfordshire and

The University of Hertfordshire is requiring the 4.5k students in their accommodation to organise their own Covid tests with only 1-2 weeks notice and haven't offered to provide any to students who might be unable to acquire tests. Currently only people with symptoms, people required to by a hospital or people who have been asked to by  a council can currently be tested. For the students to be able to be tested, Hertfordshire County Council must be enforcing this decision.

These tests must be completed 48 hours prior to arrival, tests taken before this 48 hour mark, even if negative, will not be counted. Results must be given on arrival - they have not communicated properly and told us whether we will be quarantined in accommodation, made to get a test on arrival or simply barred from entering our paid accommodation if we are not able to get results in to show on arrival. If an international student took a test before arriving but that was 3 days ago, will they simply not have anywhere to go? What about people who have already booked travel, cars and can only go on the date they've chosen but now might not be able to get that test on time? No home kits are available as of writing this, all local tests sites are booked for the next 5 days, which is all they can do on the NHS website, with the closest with any appointments available being 100+ miles away from some students and test results may not even be given in time. How do we know it won't be the same when we need to get tested, having to constantly checking the site and having no appointments available.

Tests at sites take 48 hours for results, home kits take 72 hours for results, people who have taken these tests have said sometimes it takes even longer for them to receive results. How are we expected to organise our own tests when they aren't available to us and control when results are given to us? People have rung their local sites, been told there's no appointments - sometimes they aren't even currently testing people unless they have symptoms. 

We understand why this has been thought of, none of us are against being tested, but the way this is implemented is simply not feasible for all students, extremely stressful as you have to check the site every few hours and currently we have heard no news of any other university doing this. Tests are hard to get and some people need them and are finding it hard to get them, and over 4,000 students trying to get them all for a 48 hour window before they arrive on campus will not help that. The University should provide tests themselves, let us take the tests more than 48 hours before hand so people can use the home test kits and have more opportunities to get an appointment, or simply tell us what will happen if we cannot get tested or haven't received our results in time. There are other measures that can be taken that wouldn't put as much stress on the students.

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