Policy 7902 — Storms and Other Emergencies

Policy section:
Section 7900-7999 Miscellaneous
Policy number:
Storms & Other Emergencies
Approved By:
Approved date:
December 4, 2009
Effective date:
December 4, 2009
November 1, 2018
June 1, 2019
Administered by:
The President


1.1 During storms or other emergencies the decision to employ either of the following levels of restricted services will be made by the President or designate.

Level 1: Classes are cancelled. Under this level, the University will do its best to keep all of its academic and administrative units open. See sections 1.6 and 1.7(ii) below.

Level 2: The University is closed. Under this level, all academic and administrative units will be closed, although operations such as the heating plant, security, snow clearing, and the dining hall will be maintained no matter what the circumstances. All academic and administrative buildings will be locked and any individuals in the buildings, including employees, students, and visitors, will be required to vacate the premises.

1.2 Any such decision will be communicated, in a timely manner: 

  • i) to all faculty, staff, and students via e-mail, as well as text message and/or a phone call where such contact information has been provided;
  • ii) on the University’s website; and
  • iii) through local radio stations.

1.3 Unless the University is closed, employees are expected to meet normal responsibilities to the University, with the exception of teaching classes, labs, studios, etc. when Level 1 is declared.

1.4 If employees, other than employees represented by CUPE Local 2338, are not able to meet those responsibilities, which may include coming to work and remaining at work, they must inform their supervisors in any cases where it is appropriate to do so. If their supervisors then conclude that they have made a reasonable effort to meet those responsibilities, they will be paid. Otherwise, they will not be paid. Employees represented by CUPE Local 2338 should refer to Policy 3301 for information concerning the matter of pay in such circumstances.

1.5 Employees who had scheduled vacation, sick leave, compensating time off for overtime, days off in lieu, normal days off, or other approved leave will have their time recorded as scheduled.

1.6 Unless the University is closed, the University will do its best to keep all of its academic and administrative units open. However, since the University cannot guarantee that it will be able to do so, during storms and other emergencies changes in situations or status will be communicated per 1.2 above.

1.7 During storms and other emergencies, the ability of units to remain open will not only be affected by their staffing levels, but also by the services they receive from Facilities Management. Since Facilities Management may not be able to do everything necessary to keep all units open at all times, it must do its work in the order that will best serve the University in the circumstances. In all cases, the top priorities must be the fire lanes, the residences, and the dining hall. Depending on the circumstances, parking lots may then get priority. After that,

  • i) when classes are being held priority must be given to academic buildings including the Library, and
  • ii) when classes are not being held and should the University be open, priority must be given to student and public service buildings that have not been closed as follows: the Library, the Student Centre, the Athletic Centre, the Music Conservatory, the Owens and, if there are events scheduled, in those buildings in which the events are taking place.