Earlier today you received a message detailing updates and changes to the University’s pandemic response, including updates to the University Standards and Guidelines that have directed us through various scenarios over the past year and half.
In support of these simplifications to the Standards and Guidelines, Business and Operations continues to provide strong, foundational assistance to the University, from enhanced cleaning and ventilation to contact tracing, with safety as our top priority in our response to the pandemic. In addition, the Office of Human Resources (OHR) has developed a variety of resources, including the new Interim Flexible Work Arrangements policy.
Recently, the University has added another mitigation measure: strong recommendations for our community to become vaccinated against COVID. Vaccination is the strongest tool we have in the fight against COVID. It is safe and effective, while protecting both you and those around you. Once vaccinated, or if you are already vaccinated, please upload proof of vaccination. The University requires every student, faculty and staff member to comply with certain mitigation measures unless they provide proof that they have been vaccinated.
In addition to vaccination, we have a few more requests of you:
Be flexible. We continue to learn more about the virus and new variants, which may mean changes in guidance. The science on COVID is evolving and we need to be flexible and respond accordingly. It can be challenging to adjust to these changes, but we will provide the latest information as soon as we can.
Support your colleagues. Engage in kind and empathetic conversations with those who may not be vaccinated. Pitt CoVax can host educational events to help you and your area learn about vaccinations and how to have these discussions. Be mindful that you and others have experienced a lot during this pandemic. Be patient and kind with yourself and those around you.
And, most importantly, continue to follow the health rules. They exist to protect us and keep us safe.
Lastly, thank you for your continued support and patience as we advance through this pandemic. Your energy and drive keep me engaged, empowered, and proud. We will get through this by working together.
David N. DeJong
Senior Vice Chancellor for Business and Operations