Extend Winter Break at Western University in Light of COVID-19

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COVID-19 is out of control in our province. With public school boards and public health units in neighbouring provinces (e.g Manitoba) extending winter break to try and curb the number of cases, I’m urging Western University to do the same.

Western has had multiple outbreaks now both within the London community and its residence halls. Offering a reading week in early November gave Western students the opportunity to go home to “hot zones” such as Toronto, York, and Peel only encouraging the spread of COVID-19. If Western really wants to do it’s part in stopping the spread of this virus, they will use their power as an institution to do the right thing.

Extending winter break by just two weeks could curb outbreaks and communal spread. For some, it could be the difference between life and death. With COVID-19 comes a lot of anxiety on the part of students, their parents, and university staff members as well. If winter break is extended, it will ease some of that anxiety and allow Western students and staff to enjoy the break and spend quality time with family over the holidays without the fear of returning to campus when cases begin to spike due to irresponsible but ultimately inevitable Christmas and New Years celebrations. 

This is vital for the health of our community. This is the right move. It is our civil duty to protect each other and our communities. I am confident that Western will step up as the institution and community that I am proud to be a part of. And I hope when they do, they make the right decision.