As expected in 2021, we are continuing to live with the impact of COVID-19 and a regularly changing situation locally, nationally and internationally. The University will respond to new information as it comes to hand to ensure we are following all Department of HealthSA Health, the Department of Education, Skills and Employment, and Safe Work Australia guidelines.

The University has also been actively working with the UniSA Medical Clinic to not only support the health of our University community, but also increase awareness of practical steps we can take to help stop the spread of the virus. We encourage all members of the University community to practise good hand hygiene and sneeze/cough hygiene, as this is the best defense against most viruses. This includes hand washing, using hand sanitiser, covering any coughs and sneezes, and disposing of tissues in appropriate waste collection containers. 

This webpage provides responses to commonly asked questions for UniSA staff and is updated regularly to reflect current Federal and State advice. You can also find out more by viewing the latest all staff announcements.

By following the guidelines related to preventing the spread of COVID-19 we are making every effort to minimise the spread of the virus, so that UniSA is as safe as possible an environment in which to work and study.

1. Health & Wellbeing

If you have any general questions about COVID-19, its symptoms or social/physical distancing practices please refer to SA Health’s website.

  • What should I do if I feel unwell and have symptoms consistent with COVID-19? minus-thick plus-thick

    If you feel unwell and are displaying  symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (e.g. fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, chills and body aches or muscle pain, sore throat, runny nose), even if they are very mild, you should:

    • stay at home and isolate
    • not attend work or other public places including, schools and university campuses.

    If you are severely unwell, such as having difficulty breathing, call 000 (Triple Zero).

    Help stop the spread in SA – follow SA Health advice and download the COVID SAfe Check-In app

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • What should I do if I am unwell, but I am not displaying the symptoms of COVID-19? minus-thick plus-thick

    In the event a staff member is unwell, they should take Personal Leave as they ordinarily would and report their absence to their line manager/supervisor and record their absence through myUNISA. They should not return to work until they are fully recovered.

    Please note that symptoms associated with COVID-19 are diverse and can vary from individual to individual, so you shouldn’t assume your symptoms are not COVID-19 without checking. You can refer to the SA Health’s website for information about COVID-19 and its symptoms.

    If you are one of our casual staff members, please see the response to the question 'As a casual staff member, what supports are available to me?’  in the ‘Leave and other employment matters’ section.

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • What should I do if I receive a negative result for a COVID-19 test? minus-thick plus-thick

    If a staff member receives a negative result for a COVID-19 test, they have no respiratory symptoms, and they have not been advised by SA Health that they need to continue to self-isolate, they can return to work or studies on campus. However, if the staff member continues to have symptoms consistent with a respiratory illness (e.g. cough or cold) they should stay at home until their symptoms have resolved and then return to work or study as usual once they are fit enough to do so.

    In the event their symptoms don’t resolve (or worsen) they should seek medical advice. If they have been advised by SA Health to continue to self-isolate, they should stay at home until the self-isolation period concludes and they have met any conditions required by SA Health, and only then return to work or study.

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • What should I do if I believe I may have been in contact with someone who could have been exposed or could potentially be positive for COVID-19? minus-thick plus-thick

    Please contact SA Health directly and seek specific medical advice for your particular circumstances and then follow that advice. Staff members are asked to notify the University via ptc@unisa.edu.au if they are tested for COVID-19 and they should remain in self-isolation until they receive the test result. In the event the test result is positive, please refer to the FAQ responses above.

    Staff should observe the 1.5m physical distancing requirement wherever possible and follow recommended hygiene practices, including hand washing and/or use of hand sanitiser. It is strongly recommended that staff and students download and use the COVID SAfe Check-In app so they can be easily contacted in the event they may have been exposed to a confirmed case.

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • I share a workspace with another staff member. Is this in breach of physical distancing protocols? minus-thick plus-thick

    Wherever possible best endeavors should be made to maintain physical distancing of 1.5m or greater. Where physical distancing is not possible, other controls should be considered to minimise any risk to staff health and wellbeing, such as disinfecting a workstation before and after use, or using an alternative workspace/location.

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • What mental health and wellbeing support is available for staff? minus-thick plus-thick

    As the University manages its response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we are doing everything we can to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of our staff, students and wider community.

    If you are feeling anxious about the impact of COVID-19 please remember the confidential Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is available to support you. Appointments are available from Monday to Friday, 9.00am-5.00pm and can be booked by calling 1300 277 924. Provision has been made for consultations to be provided remotely. For more information contact the Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

    If you are feeling unwell, you can contact the Health Direct Hotline - 1800 022 222 (available 24/7); the National Coronavirus Information Helpline - 1800 020 080 (available 24/7); or the SA COVID-19 Information Line - 1800 253 787 (available 7 days a week 8.00am-8.00pm).

    The University also has a wide range of wellbeing information, resources, training modules and tools available through the People, Talent and Culture website.

    Additionally, SA Health has a mental health support line you can contact on 1800 632 753 (available 7 days a week 8.00am-8.00pm) as well as a mental health fact sheet with more information on their website.

    You can also speak to your local People, Talent and Culture team who will be happy to provide confidential assistance and advice.

    Last updated: Thursday 18 February 2021

  • Are there any COVID-19 screening or testing requirements currently in place for students? minus-thick plus-thick

    Depending on students’ course requirements, some Program Directors and Course Coordinators have implemented COVID-19 screening conditions for in-class activities where physical distancing measures cannot be met. For example, nursing and midwifery students taking blood pressure as part of a scenario-based workshop won’t be able to maintain a 1.5m distance so will need to complete a screening questionnaire prior to participating.

    Some placement providers may also have COVID-19 screening checklists in place before students commence their placement, shift or placement day.

    These screening requirements are in addition to other control measures already implemented such as hand sanitiser, which students and staff can access, as well as masks where appropriate. 

    The South Australian Government has also restricted anyone currently working at a medi-hotel from working in another high-risk setting (such as residential aged care and correctional services) for 14 days after working at a quarantine facility. Students which this applies to will need to inform their employer or placement provider, and placement coordinator that they work at a medi-hotel. For more information, visit SA Health’s Supervised quarantine webpage.

    Last updated: Thursday 25 February 2021

2. Impact on University Operations

  • Is the University still open? minus-thick plus-thick

    Yes, UniSA campuses are open, subject to some changes to teaching delivery, facility accessibility and University services that have been put in place to minimise the risk and spread of COVID-19.

    The maximum persons allowed in all facilities, meeting rooms and classes will be determined by the density requirements outlined in the State Government’s Emergency Management Direction. The maximum number will be determined by the size of the room available using this guide. Please contact FM Assist if you need assistance in determining the maximum capacity of a room.

    UniSA Library facilities are open and accessible. Study areas and small meeting rooms in campus libraries have been set up to ensure physical distancing. Signage is provided to remind students of good social distancing practices. Students are asked to always observe the adjusted seating capacity of the bookable group study and meeting rooms.

    All essential business visitors are also able to attend University campus environments in locations where physical distancing measures can be easily maintained. All visitors will be expected to comply with the social distancing and hygiene protocols in place.

    The University is constantly monitoring the Australian Government’s directions and will continue to adhere to Federal and State advice on what control measures are required.

    The University will always consider the health, safety and wellbeing of our community when decisions are being made about our services and operations. Any changes as a result of COVID-19 will also be communicated promptly to staff, with advance notice wherever possible.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • Which activities are on campus and which are online? minus-thick plus-thick
    • The University is open – our campuses, learning and teaching facilities are all accessible to students and staff.
    • Our libraries, gyms, pool and computer barns are all open for students and staff, with appropriate physical distancing constraints applied.
    • It is recommended students and staff have the UniSA SafeZone app installed and ‘check in’ via the app to register with campus security on arrival to campus.
    • Students and staff are not required to check in using the COVID SAfe Check-In QR code when on campus for study or work activities, but do need to check in when using a campus retail/food outlet; visiting a gym, pool, or Health Clinic; and when participating in any UniSA activity or event displaying a QR code.
    • Subject to regulatory requirements, lectures and exams will continue to be delivered online for Study Periods 1-4 in 2021 with all other teaching (e.g. seminars, tutorials, practicals, workshops etc.) conducted on campus.
    • Student placements will continue where the provider allows. There may be additional requirements of students who travel or who are engaged in work that is considered of greater risk for COVID-19 exposure.
    • The existing protocols for on-campus delivery of research are similarly being maintained.
    • The Kerry Packer Civic Gallery,The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Library and are open and running under regular operating hours.
    • Public events on campus can occur aligned to current State Government restrictions and with appropriate physical distancing measures in place. Please contact FM Assist if you are planning to hold an event on campus.

    The University is constantly monitoring the Australian Government’s directions and will continue to adhere to Federal and State advice on what control measures are required.

    The University will always consider the health, safety and wellbeing of our community when decisions are being made about our services and operations. Any changes as a result of COVID-19 will also be communicated promptly to students and staff, with advance notice wherever possible.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

     

  • Are there any changes to the academic year in response to COVID-19? minus-thick plus-thick

    As the academic year progresses, we will continue to assess teaching delivery, assessment, examinations, grading and intake dates so these align with government health advice and to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of the entire UniSA community.

    We will continue to monitor the ongoing situation and communicate updated information promptly to all staff and students, with advance notice wherever possible.

    Last updated: Wednesday 24 March 2021

  • Do I have to use the SA Government QR code to check in when I come on to campus? minus-thick plus-thick

    From Tuesday 1 December 2020, the South Australian Government introduced COVID SAfe Check-In. All businesses with a COVID-safe plan must display a QR code (as well as a paper-based back up for those who do not have a suitable mobile phone to scan the QR code). Anyone visiting a business displaying a COVID SAfe Check-In QR code is required to scan the code to sign in (or complete the paper form).

    UniSA staff are NOT required to check in when they are attending UniSA facilities to work – e.g. conducting a workshop with students, or attending the office. (We do ask that you check in via the UniSA SafeZone app.)

    However, you DO need to check in when you are purchasing and consuming food or beverages within a campus retail outlet, visiting a gym, pool, Health Clinic, or participating in any UniSA activity or event displaying a QR code.

    If you are gathering on campus – for example, having end of year catch-ups in one of the food and beverage outlets – you will also need to check in with the QR code.

    Find out more about using the QR code to check in.

    Last updated: Wednesday 20 January 2021

  • What is happening with graduations? minus-thick plus-thick

    For more information on graduations, please refer to the ‘Graduations’ section in the student FAQs.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • How can TIU support me with online teaching? minus-thick plus-thick

    TIU has several resources and supports in place to assist staff with teaching online. Visit the TIU webpage for more information on workshops and individual consults or visit the dedicated FAQ page for answers to the most common queries.

    All UniSA staff can book consultations with an Academic Developer for questions regarding their curriculum or course design for face-to-face or online teaching, Online Educational Designer for any questions they have regarding teaching online, and a Media Developer for any questions they have regarding recording or editing videos using Panopto.

    Last updated: Wednesday 24 March 2021

     

  • Other jurisdictions are placing limits on public indoor gatherings and meetings – are we? minus-thick plus-thick

    All staff must follow the University’s social distancing protocol and density requirements when holding any meetings on campus. Please contact FM Assist if you need assistance in determining the maximum capacity of a room.

    Last updated: Monday 29 March 2021

  • How can I continue to safely conduct my research activities? minus-thick plus-thick

    You can undertake research and fieldwork activities where research continuity plans, risk assessments and appropriate physical distancing measures have been put in place.

    Please ensure you’re mindful of the following when accessing campus research facilities:

    1. You will need to meet WHS controls, as well as any technical or supervisory requirements; and
    2. You will need to complete an up to date researcher preparedness framework and return to the relevant Dean/Director Research.

    Social distancing protocols also must be strictly met by all researchers, as well as all other WHS requirements, including use of the UniSA Safezone app with location enabled. 

    Requests for on-campus research and for off-campus field work—including by research degree students—should be signed off by the applicable Dean of Research, unless you are travelling into an area for which there are cases and advisories in place.

    Last updated: Wednesday 24 March 2021

  • What is happening with research grants? minus-thick plus-thick

    For queries regarding research grants, please contact grant.management@unisa.edu.au. The Research and Innovation Services Team have expanded the number of people managing these enquiries. They will communicate regularly with the ARC and NHMRC, and work through enquiries for all categories of research funding and update FAQs to help researchers manage these important partnerships. We will similarly be working with our research leaders to advance appropriate contingencies for research activities and HDR students. 

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Is the UniSA library still open? minus-thick plus-thick

    UniSA Library facilities currently remain open and accessible. Study areas and small meeting rooms in campus libraries will be set up to ensure social distancing. Signage is provided to remind students of good social distancing practices. Students are asked to always observe the adjusted seating capacity of the bookable group study and meeting rooms.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • What UniSA sports and recreation facilities are open? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University’s gyms and indoor fitness facilities – including UniSA Sport – operate in line with Federal and State Government advice.

    For more information, please visit the UniSA Sport website or follow us on Facebook.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • Can I use the on-campus prayer rooms? minus-thick plus-thick

    Yes. You will need to consider the number of people in the prayer room at any one time and follow the physical distancing and density requirements set out in the State Government’s Emergency Management Direction. The capacity of all shared spaces is clearly signed to align with official health advice and limitations must be followed.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • What on-campus food outlets are open? minus-thick plus-thick

    University food outlets operate in line with State government protocols. Please see the Food and Beverage Providers page for more information.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Can I still use the end of trip facilities when I ride to work? minus-thick plus-thick

    You can still use secure storage areas to secure your bike. Please ensure you continue to abide by the 1.5 metre social distancing guidelines while doing this. Change room facilities are currently available for use.

    Last updated: Monday 29 March 2021

  • Can I still use the lifts? minus-thick plus-thick

    Lifts within buildings will continue to remain in operation. The government has excluded lifts from the required square metre social distancing protocol.

    Last updated: Monday 29 March 2021

  • Is the Campus Connector bus service operating? minus-thick plus-thick

    As a result of the COVID-19 impacts on the University, we regretfully advise the Campus Connector free shuttle service, which operated during Study Periods 2 and Study Periods 5 between Magill and Mawson Lakes campuses, will cease to operate for the foreseeable future. For transport options, please visit the Adelaide Metro website

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • What COVID-19 requirements do I need to be aware of when planning an event on campus? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University has implemented guidelines and processes for on-campus events to ensure the safety of our staff, students and wider community.

    If you or your team is planning to host an event on campus, please contact your local FM Assist office in the first instance so they can advise you on the next steps, and what you need to be aware of based on the nature of your event, who is invited, how event registrations are managed and how many participants will be attending.

    Depending on your specific circumstances, you may be required to complete and submit a COVID-Safe Plan in consultation with FMU (which will also provide you with a COVID Safe Check-in QR code), as well as COVID Marshal training.

    Events with more than 1,000 attendees will need to complete a COVID-Management Plan and have a dedicated person assigned as COVID Marshal.

    All events need to meet physical distancing and density requirements outlined in the State Government’s Emergency Management Direction, have hand sanitiser available for attendees, and be mindful of separate entry and exit points if practicable. Communal catering items such as water jugs and coffee urns are also not allowed – all food and drink items must be individually wrapped or packaged.

    Last updated: Monday 29 March 2021

3. Travel Advice

  • What travel ban restrictions are in place? minus-thick plus-thick

    The outbreak of the COVID-19 virus has placed restrictions on intrastate, interstate and international travel.

    All international travel on University business and/or study tours is suspended until further notice.

    For existing travel bookings which have not yet commenced (and were previously booked through the University), the University’s Travel Team will work with affected travellers to cancel flights and accommodation.

    For more information on overseas travel restrictions the State and Federal governments currently have in place, refer to the SA Government’s travel restrictions webpage.

    Required essential work-related interstate travel may be approved. Requests for approval of essential interstate travel will be reviewed in line with State border restrictions.

    For all support around travel-related issues for travel booked via the UniSA Travel Team, contact 08 8302 6430 or e-mail travelteam@unisa.edu.au.

    For all current travel restrictions applicable to South Australia, refer to the SA Government’s travel restrictions webpage.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I have been booked to attend a future conference, should I still go? minus-thick plus-thick

    In line with the University’s travel announcement, and the Federal Government advice, all international travel on University business and/or study tours is suspended until further notice.  

    For existing travel bookings which have not yet commenced (and were previously booked through the University), the University’s Travel Team will work with affected travellers to cancel flights and accommodation.

    The University will consider work-related regional travel and required essential work-related interstate travel. Requests for approval of essential interstate travel will be reviewed in line with State border restrictions.

    As this is an ever-evolving pandemic and restrictions are assessed and eased it is advised that you continue to monitor travel restrictions set by the University, as well as the Federal and State Government.

    For all support around travel-related issues for travel booked via the UniSA Travel Team, contact 08 8302 6430 or e-mail travelteam@unisa.edu.au.

    Last updated: Wednesday 24 March 2021

  • A visiting scholar is scheduled to arrive in Australia. Do I need to cancel their visit? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University will continue to follow and align with the Australian Government’s direction. At this stage we are working to support current international travel and border restrictions. A decision will need to be made based on the Government’s advice in line with the visiting scholar’s arrival date. It is recommended that you remain in contact with them regularly and ensure they are aware of and monitoring the Australian Government’s provisions about travel into Australia from overseas.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • Can I travel from Interstate to South Australia? minus-thick plus-thick

    As part of state control measures, the Government has imposed some border restrictions for anyone travelling into and out of South Australia. To find out more and what registrations may be required to complete, visit the SA Government Travel restrictions webpage.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • What is an Essential Traveller? minus-thick plus-thick

    If you wish to travel and consider your trip essential for work purposes, please be aware of the following process.

    As per the directive from the Vice Chancellor, all travel requests are required to go through an essential travel assessment prior to ticketing. The following steps are required to be undertaken:

    1. Discuss your travel requirement with your Line Manager/Supervisor to ensure the proposed travel is classed as essential;
    2. If so, complete a BTR (Business Travel Request) with your travel requirements, and;
    3. Once the BTR is submitted, complete remaining information relevant to your requirements and submit to the Travel Team member looking after your request.

    Once the completed essential travel questionnaire is received, additional endorsement is sought from ELT and the Travel Team member will keep you informed as to the status of your request.

    The University also has some work travel restrictions in place depending on location in line with state and federal government advice. To find out more, visit our Recovery Roadmap webpage.

    For personal travel, the SA Government has set out what they define as an ‘Essential Traveller’ – please refer to the schedules linked at the bottom of their Travel restrictions webpage for more information regarding this, as well as the South Australia Police website for advice around cross-border travel.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

4. Working Flexibly

  • Can I work from home again? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University will continue to offer staff the opportunity to participate in flexible work arrangements.

    Relevant information about working from home, the necessary WHS forms and information on wellbeing and other resources about working remotely are available on the People, Talent and Culture page. All working from home arrangements require the formal approval of your line manager/supervisor.

    While working from home staff are reminded that they must still:

    • Remain contactable by, and follow the direction of, their line manager or supervisor
    • Continue to follow all relevant University policies and procedures
    • Observe confidentiality of, and ensure the integrity and security of, information in both hard and soft copy. Security of information, data integrity and privacy in the home-based/remote worksite will need to mirror the University’s office-based policies
    • Abide by the University’s ISTS policies and procedures
    • Take care to ensure their health and safety in their home during periods in which they are working. All WHS procedures which apply at the staff member’s usual place of work, shall, as far as practicable, apply in carrying out work at home.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • What University data sensitivities should I be mindful of when working from home? minus-thick plus-thick

    While you are working from home, please maintain the security and privacy of the University’s data by ensuring that no one else in your household (or visitors to your household) can access or view University data. There is information available here to help you keep UniSA data safe. If you have any questions of concern in this regard, please contact the IT Help Desk.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • What can I claim for tax deductions while working from home? minus-thick plus-thick

    The ATO has provided advice on expenses you may incur if you are working from home and the ways you can claim them. You can access that information on the ATO website.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

5. Leave and Other Employment Matters

We have developed a set of COVID-19 Key Employment principles that will guide our thinking as we continue to monitor the current situation and ensure we are responding appropriately.  Our aim is to assist staff by providing clarity and certainty where we can on how we will manage a number of key activities going forward, that will enable us to maximise our efforts to keep staff engaged and working productively whilst contributing to minimising the spread of the virus.  These principles will be reviewed and evolve as we continue to navigate the current situation.

  • Exceptional Special Leave with Pay minus-thick plus-thick

    The University has introduced an exceptional special leave with pay provision as a discretionary benefit to support staff impacted by COVID-19. For more information, please refer to Section 6 of the COVID-19 Key Employment principles.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • I have been advised by a healthcare authority to self-isolate due to potential exposure to COVID 19, am I entitled to leave? minus-thick plus-thick

    You should in the first instance discuss your situation with your line manager or supervisor and they will explore whether working from home arrangements are feasible for you.  If your work necessitates you continuing to work on campus or other University premises, your line manager or supervisor will explore with you whether you can undertake alternative duties from home. Your line manager should advise ptc@unisa.edu.au of your absence so the appropriate advice and support can be provided.

    If your line manager or supervisor determines that you are unable to undertake your normal or alternative duties from home, the University has made additional provisions to support staff in these exceptional circumstances:

    • Continuing and fixed term staff: you will be entitled to Exceptional Special Leave with Pay as a once-only additional benefit for the duration of your self-isolation period of 14 calendar days, paid at your ordinary hours of work over that period.
    • Part time staff members will be entitled to Exceptional Special Leave with Pay as a once-only additional benefit for the duration of your self-isolation period, paid at the ordinary hours you would have worked over that period of self-isolation.
    • Casual staff members: please see the response to the frequently asked question As a casual staff member, what support is available to me?”

    Your absence should be recorded through the myUNISA portal.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • I have become sick with COVID-19 while I am self-isolating, what is the appropriate leave to take? minus-thick plus-thick

    Continuing and fixed term staff should take personal (sick) leave in the event they have a confirmed case of COVID-19. Where your personal leave is exhausted you may access any other accrued leave entitlements (e.g. recreation leave or long service leave) until they are exhausted. Your line manager should advise ptc@unisa.edu.au of your absence in line with our reporting Protocol so the appropriate advice and support can be provided.

    For casual staff members, please see the Exceptional special leave with pay section and the frequently asked question, “As a casual staff member, what support is available to me?” 

    Last updated: Tuesday 15 December 2020

  • I’m a supervisor and a member of my team is displaying flu-like symptoms. Can I send the staff member home? minus-thick plus-thick

    Yes.  We need to consider all practical measures to minimise the risk to others in the workplace and you can require staff to not attend the workplace if you have reasonable grounds to believe that they are exhibiting flu like symptoms.

    For continuing and fixed term staff you can ask them to consider taking personal (sick) leave if they believe they are not well enough to undertake their full range of normal duties.  They can also consider accessing any other accrued leave entitlements (e.g. recreation leave or long service leave) if they have exhausted their personal leave entitlement.

    If a staff member believes they can undertake their full range of normal duties and you agree, please explore work from home as an option.

    For casual staff, the University’s first preference is to work with any casual staff member to explore with them whether they can work from home.  If this is not possible due to the nature of their work, then the casual staff member will be required to remain away from the workplace until they are fit to return.  They will not be paid where it is a non COVID-19 illness as the 25% loading compensates for personal leave.

    Please contact your People, Talent and Culture representative to discuss any questions you may have.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I have a staff member who is required to self-isolate due to medical advice, what should I tell them? minus-thick plus-thick

    In the event a staff member is required to self-isolate, consider whether they can work from home in the first instance. In the event that this is not possible, continuing and fixed term staff members will be entitled to Exceptional Special Leave with Pay (COVID) as a once-only additional benefit for the duration of their self-isolation period of 14 calendar days, paid at their ordinary hours of work over that period. As a line manager you should advise ptc@unisa.edu.au of the staff member’s absence so the appropriate advice and support can be provided.

    In the event a continuing or fixed term staff member was to become unwell and/or has been tested and confirmed as having contracted COVID-19 during their self-isolation period and they are unable to continue to undertake their full range of normal duties (if they are working from home), they should take personal (sick) leave for the remainder of the duration of their self-isolation period and beyond, until such time as they are cleared as fit to return to the workplace by their medical practitioner.  A medical certificate will be required to be provided if they have been diagnosed as contracting COVID-19. You should advise ptc@unisa.edu.au of the staff member’s absence so the appropriate advice and support can be provided.

    Where personal leave is exhausted, a continuing or fixed term staff member may access any other accrued leave entitlements (e.g. recreation leave or long service leave) until exhausted.

    For casual staff members please see the response to the frequently asked question “As a casual staff member, what support is available to me?”.

    It is important to remain in regular contact with the staff member during their self-isolation period or the period of their personal leave and to ensure that staff are aware that the University’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is available to them during this time.

    The University also has a wide range of wellbeing information, resources, training modules and tools available through the People, Talent and Culture website.

    Additionally, SA Health has a mental health support line you can contact on 1800 632 753 (available 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm) as well as a mental health fact sheet with more information on their website.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I am pregnant and concerned about COVID-19. minus-thick plus-thick

    In the first instance discuss with your line manager/supervisor how you are feeling. Where it’s appropriate and practicable, the University is encouraging staff to temporarily working from home. You should be guided by advice from your treating medical practitioner. If you are unable to undertake your full range of duties from home, we will explore with you whether you can undertake alternative duties.  If this is not practicable or you are unable to undertake your full range of duties, your supervisor can discuss with you access to paid leave entitlements (e.g. personal leave, recreation leave, long service leave etc) as provided in the University’s Enterprise Agreement. In the event those leave entitlements are exhausted, you may be able to access special leave without pay subject to approval by the relevant delegate, in this circumstance we suggest you seek further information from your People, Talent and Culture representative.

    The University also has a wide range of wellbeing information, resources, training modules and tools available through the People, Talent and Culture website.

    Additionally, SA Health has a mental health support line you can contact on 1800 632 753 (available 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm) as well as a mental health fact sheet with more information on their website.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Do I need a medical certificate to return to work? minus-thick plus-thick

    You don’t need a medical certificate to clear you to return to work unless your line manager requests one. The University recognises that due to the particular current circumstances relating to COVID-19 it may not be possible for you to provide a Medical Certificate particularly for self-isolation.  If we do require evidence of your circumstances and you are unable to provide a Medical Certificate, we will ask that you provide a Statutory Declaration. However, if you do have a Medical Certificate send this to your line manager as soon as you are safely able to do so and we ask that you do not return to work until you are fit and able to do so.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I am the primary carer of a child school age or younger, and am having difficulty undertaking my usual workload during term time – what are my options? minus-thick plus-thick

    If you are the primary carer of a child school age or younger, and are having difficulty undertaking your usual workload for a period of time during scheduled/non-scheduled term time as:

    a)    the school/preschool/OSHC/childcare centre/vacation care my child attends has been closed or is directed to close due to COVID-19; or

    (b)   the regular care arrangement (e.g. family member or other carer arrangements) for my child is unavailable due to matters related to COVID-19,

    there are a few options.

    Where your ordinary care/schooling arrangements are not available, and you are unable to make alternative arrangements:

    • As a first step talk to your line manager or supervisor about your current working arrangements and what potential changes to your hours of work could be considered to accommodate your usual workload. The University’s Flexible Work Arrangements Procedure will be helpful in identifying potential options.  
    • If your circumstances cannot be accommodated by changes to your work pattern and you are unable to undertake your usual workload, continuing and fixed term staff are able to access paid Family Responsibility Leave (FRL) and/or personal/carer’s leave. Where your FRL and personal/carer’s leave is exhausted you may access any other accrued leave entitlements (e.g. recreation leave, long service leave). Certain leave types may be taken in full or part days, to support you managing your responsibilities.
    • All staff, including casual staff, may be eligible to access unpaid carer’s leave (up to two days unpaid per occasion for unexpected emergency) in accordance with the University’s Enterprise Agreement.
    • Continuing and fixed term staff may request Special Leave without pay for a specific period should their other leave entitlements be exhausted. For more information please contact your People, Talent and Culture representative and see the Special Leave Procedure.
    • Where a casual staff member requires an extended period of time away from work due to carer’s responsibilities, they should discuss their situation with their line manager as early as possible.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Will my absences from work be recorded? minus-thick plus-thick

    Yes, the University will need to keep a record of any absences related to COVID-19, including absences related to self-isolation.  Please ensure you record your leave absences through the myHR portal. The myUNISA portal has special provision to record those absences which directly relate to the impact of COVID-19.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I would like to stay home as a precaution against being exposed to COVID-19, am I entitled to leave? minus-thick plus-thick

    We understand that some members of the University community are feeling anxious about the current COVID-19 pandemic and the University will prioritise working from home arrangements for staff in in high risk groups and those who are pregnant.

    For other staff who wish to stay home as a precaution, you should discuss how you’re feeling with your supervisor.  While the University will be facilitating working from home arrangements where practicable and for as many staff as possible, in line with communications issued and updated by the University, such arrangements may not always be able to occur in the manner or way staff may seek for business and operational reasons. It may be that you would benefit from support from our Employee Assistance Program, via Human Psychology. This free, confidential service is available to staff and their families and can be contacted on 1300 277 924.

    The University is committed to taking appropriate and reasonable measures to ensure staff are provided a safe working environment and continuing and fixed term staff may also access other forms of paid leave in these circumstances subject to approval by their supervisor in line with operating requirements in place at the time.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • I need to stay at home to provide care to someone in my household who has COVID-19. minus-thick plus-thick

    In this circumstance, you will be required to self-isolate. You should discuss with your line manager or supervisor working from home arrangements. If you are unable to undertake your full range of duties during this time and you are required to self-isolate because you are in close contact with a household member who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, for continuing and fixed term staff you will be entitled to 14 calendar days of exceptional special leave with pay for full time staff members or for part time staff members, paid for the ordinary hours they would have worked in that period.  

    Your line manager will advise ptc@unisa.edu.au to ensure that the appropriate advice and support can be provided.

    If your carer responsibilities extend beyond the self-isolation period, continuing and fixed term staff may also be entitled to access paid Family Responsibility Leave (FRL) and personal/carer’s leave.  Where your FRL, personal leave/carer’s leave is exhausted, you may access any other accrued leave entitlement until that is exhausted.

    Casual staff who are self-isolating as a result of caring for a member of their household who has COVID-19, will be paid for their projected contracted hours they would have worked over the next 14 calendar day period. After this period, they can also access unpaid carer’s leave where they are caring for a member of their household in accordance with the University’s Enterprise Agreement.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • As a casual staff member, what support is available to me? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University recognises the impact that COVID-19 may have for casual staff members, given they are not entitled to paid leave entitlements. The University’s first preference will be to work with our casual staff members who are directly impacted by COVID-19 to explore whether work can be undertaken remotely in line with their contracted hours.

    In the event that the projected hours of a casual staff member are unable to be performed due to:

    • Government directives or advice;
    • Operational decisions by the University to require staff to work remotely or to pause specific business activities; or
    • Other factors beyond the University’s control,

    the University will consider whether it can provide alternative duties consistent with the work and hours outlined in the staff member’s casual contract or other arrangements as agreed with the staff member.

    If this is not possible, and the casual staff member is unable to undertake their duties in a remote working arrangement, the staff member will be paid for time they have worked to date as approved by their time sheet approver up until the date the work ceased.

    The University also has a wide range of wellbeing information, resources, training modules and tools available through the People, Talent and Culture website.

    Additionally, SA Health has a mental health support line you can contact on 1800 632 753 (available 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm) as well as a mental health fact sheet with supporting information on their website.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • I am identified as in a high-risk category if I contract COVID-19, what does this mean for me? minus-thick plus-thick

    Throughout the pandemic the University has progressed its response to COVID-19 in line with government agency advice, specifically, Australian Government, Department of Health, SA Health and Safework SA. The University recognises that staff with underlying illnesses that make them more vulnerable to respiratory disease, including those with diabetes, chronic lung disease, kidney failure, people with suppressed immune systems and older people, are at a higher risk of serious illness if they contract COVID-19.

    The University remains committed to the safety and wellbeing of its staff and students, including those considered vulnerable and in high risk groups. In line with the latest medical advice the University acknowledges that those at higher risk of more severe diseases may need to consider alternative working arrangements or other reasonable adjustments to their normal activities and interactions to ensure appropriate physical and social distancing and other appropriate hygiene and safety controls can be put in place. The University will continue to work with staff members to explore reasonable adjustments that will enable them to work safely in line with the available advice. For further information, these staff should contact their People, Talent and Culture representative for advice on potential options.

    If a member of staff has a pre-existing health condition that could potentially increase the severity of the impact of the virus if they contract it, and they do not fall into the identified groups above, then they should contact their supervisor or People, Talent and Culture representative for advice. The University will consider reasonable adjustments that can be made to facilitate a safe working environment for staff.

    The University also has a wide range of wellbeing information, resources, training modules and tools available through the People, Talent and Culture website.

    Additionally, SA Health has a mental health support line you can contact on 1800 632 753 (available 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm) as well as a mental health fact sheet with more information on their website.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • My Fixed Term Contract is due to end shortly, will this be affected by COVID 19? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University will continue to abide by the provisions of the University’s Enterprise Agreement, legislation and University policies. In view of the exceptional circumstances we have developed a set of COVID-19 Key Employment Principles  that will guide our thinking as we continue to monitor the current situation and ensure we are responding appropriately.  Our aim is to assist staff by providing clarity and certainty where we can on how we will manage a number of key activities going forward, that will enable us to maximise our efforts to keep staff engaged and working productively whilst contributing to minimising the spread of the virus.  These principles will be reviewed and evolve as we continue to navigate the current situation. If after reviewing the principles you have further questions, please contact your local People, Talent and Culture team.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • I have a contract due to commence shortly, but will be required to self-isolate for 14 days, what will happen? minus-thick plus-thick

    Please let the Hiring Manager or your Recruitment Consultant know about your situation by contacting them directly. The University will make arrangements to accommodate this requirement and will liaise with you in advance of you taking up your position.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

  • I am worried about the impact of the current circumstances on my super balance, what should I do? minus-thick plus-thick

    We understand in the current circumstances that some staff members may be concerned about their super balance and investments with UniSuper.

    UniSuper advise us they are experiencing an extraordinary increase in the number of member enquiries, which has led to longer than normal wait times. They are working hard to respond to calls and emails as quickly as possible. They advise staff to visit their website regularly or log into their online account for the latest information about your super and commentary on financial markets, your investments and government announcements and updates.

    Alternatively, you can all 1800 331 685, Monday - Friday, 8:00am – 5:30pm, contact them via email , or make an appointment at unisuper.com.au/campus-bookings.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

     

     

  • How do I get an employment separation certificate for JobSeeker payments? minus-thick plus-thick

    Australian Government advice in response to COVID-19 means you do not require an employment separation certificate for JobSeeker payments, view the advice here. However if you have been advised by Centrelink that you do require a separation certificate, please contact PayrollServices@unisa.edu.au.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • If I have booked leave and during the period I’m on leave, the University instructs staff to work from home, can I cancel my leave? minus-thick plus-thick

    If at any time staff have an agreed working from home arrangement, leave still needs to be approached as you would working on campus. If you are working from home then you are required to present for work and perform your duties as if you were working on campus (or as agreed by your supervisor).  When working remotely/from home, normal leave provisions apply.

    Last updated: Tuesday 15 December 2020

6. Advice to students

We have created a dedicated Student Support (COVID-19) website highlighting the resources available to support UniSA students with their learning and technology needs, financial support, as well as their health, safety and wellbeing.

7. Staff Returning to Campus

  • What should I do if, after I have returned to work, I experience any cold or flu-related symptoms? minus-thick plus-thick

    Any member of the University community, including staff, students, contactors and business visitors, who experience or demonstrate cold and flu symptoms must not attend the University and should be advised to go home if they do present on campus.

    If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, follow the Australian Government’s Department of Health advice and seek medical help.

    In the event you are not able to attend work as a result of cold and flu symptoms, contact your supervisor, who will advise you on the appropriate leave arrangements.

    Any confirmed cases of COVID-19 must be reported immediately, in line with our COVID 19 reporting protocol, via email to PTC@unisa.edu.au.

    If you need further advice about your symptoms, the National Coronavirus Hotline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 1800 020 080.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I am in a high-risk category for COVID-19, is it safe for me to work on campus? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University recognises that people with underlying illnesses that make them more vulnerable to respiratory disease, including those with diabetes, chronic lung disease, kidney failure, people with suppressed immune systems and older people, are at a higher risk of serious illness if they contract COVID-19.

    If a member of staff, or someone they live with, has a pre-existing health condition that could potentially increase the severity of the virus if they contract it, they should work with their supervisor, or People, Talent and Culture representative, to agree appropriate arrangements. These may need to be guided by advice from the relevant treating medical practitioner.

    The University encourages staff who are in high risk groups, or who live with a person in a high-risk category, to seek medical advice to ensure their working arrangements are supported by appropriate risk assessment and decision-making. If a staff member lives with someone in a high-risk group and they are unable to work from home, they may need to take leave to cover the period when they are not able to work as the ordinarily would. Information on the leave provisions staff can access can be found here.

    Last updated: Tuesday 15 December 2020

  • Do I need to download the COVIDSafe App? minus-thick plus-thick

    Staff are strongly encouraged to download and utilise the COVIDSafe application in line with Government advice however this is a personal decision and staff are not obliged to do this. The University recognises the app as a measure to assist in minimising the risk of infection and staying healthy, but acknowledges that, ultimately, it is an individual choice.

    The Australian Government has released the COVIDSafe app to speed up contact with people potentially exposed to coronavirus. This helps to protect others who may have been within 1.5m of an infected person for 15 minutes or longer and enables public health officers to offer testing more rapidly so the appropriate advice and action can be provided.

    If a member of the University  community is diagnosed with coronavirus or advised to self-isolate because they have been exposed they should follow the COVID-19 reporting protocol and immediately notify the University by email to PTC@unisa.edu.au. 

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • What physical distancing measures has the University implemented? minus-thick plus-thick

    University staff, in all work environments, must adhere to UniSA’s Social Distancing Protocol and the physical distancing rule outlined in the State Government’s Emergency Management Direction. Accordingly, maximum occupancy for indoor areas will be calculated based on room size. Clear signage has been provided at the entrance of all general teaching and meeting spaces to indicate the maximum occupancy. Generally, all work environments have been designed so that individuals have greater than 2 sqm, however if staff have any concern they can contact their local FM Assist office for advice. Staff are able to attend business meetings on campus where physical distancing measures can be maintained. Long or large meetings where physical distancing is more difficult to maintain should be facilitated by audio-visual link, for example via zoom.

    Last updated: Monday 29 March 2021

  • Should I be concerned about using public transport to travel to and from work? minus-thick plus-thick

    Adelaide Metro have increased cleaning schedules across all public transport modes and disinfectant products recommended under national health guidelines are being used.

    In addition to standard cleaning, extra crews are being used across the network with particular focus being given to hard surfaces such as handrails, validators and push buttons.

    Adelaide Metro has also transitioned to a cashless system to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

    Follow @AdelaideMetroSA on Twitter for updates, check the Adelaide Metro website, or contact the Adelaide Metro InfoLine on 1300 311 108.  If you are feeling ill with flu-like symptoms, please avoid travel on public transport and remain home and contact your supervisor.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Can we now travel further afield, interstate or overseas? minus-thick plus-thick

    The University will continue to take a cautious approach to travel based on government medical advice and essential business and/or personal needs.

    More information is available via the Smartraveller website and the University Travel website.

    Any requirement for you to travel in relation to your role and responsibilities must be discussed with your supervisor.

    Last updated: Friday 7 May 2021

  • Can the University accommodate business visitors at this time? E.g. Contractors, volunteers and couriers. minus-thick plus-thick

    All essential business visitors are able to attend University campus environments in locations where physical distancing measures can be easily maintained. All visitors will be expected to comply with the social distancing and hygiene protocols in place.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I share a workspace with another staff member. Is this in breach of physical distancing protocols? minus-thick plus-thick

    Not necessarily. Workspaces (e.g. hot-desks, job-sharing facilities, communal areas) that are regularly used by more than one staff member will require a  local disinfecting protocol and a roster of attendance to ensure physical distancing and hygiene measures can be maintained. Responsibility for disinfecting shared workstations rests with the local area. In the first instance disinfectant wipes (or equivalent) will be made available via FM Assist offices.

    Staff members who regularly share workspaces should contact their supervisor to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place to ensure physical distancing and hygiene practices can be maintained effectively or an alternative workspace/location agreed.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • I have observed a staff member (or student) exhibit symptoms that I suspect to be COVID-19. What should I do? minus-thick plus-thick

    As with all situations involving colds and flu viruses, please advise people who are unwell to stay home until they have fully recovered. You can recommend them to seek medical advice with their own treating medical practitioner or at the UniSA Medical Clinic. Staff should phone ahead before attending in person.

    If a member of the University  community is diagnosed with coronavirus or advised to self-isolate because they have been exposed they should notify the University by email to PTC@unisa.edu.au. Please refer to the University’s COVID-19 reporting protocol for details.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Can we share food at a Team/Unit Meeting? Or have a morning tea? minus-thick plus-thick

    The Department of Health recommends, to protect yourself, your co-workers and others that food handling and sharing be limited in the workplace.

    For small group meetings (single table, team meetings), a share platter of food is allowed.

    For larger group meetings (where multiple tables are required), it is advised that shared food be restricted to each table and only consumed by people seated at that table.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020

  • Can we have a BBQ/Sausage Sizzle? minus-thick plus-thick

    Yes, this is considered as takeaway food, but certain measures must be taken to reduce the risk of infection, including:

    • People being served must practice physical distancing when lining up to order and practice good hygiene.
    • No self-service of condiments etc. (person serving the food must apply condiments).
    • Cooked food must be protected from contamination and stored away from the area where orders are placed.

    Last updated: Tuesday 17 November 2020