COVID-19: FEARS OVER SPREAD AS 'UK's BIGGEST ANNUAL MIGRATION' ABOUT TO TAKE PLACE
On Sunday 30 August 2020, Katerina Vittozzi, the North of England Correspondent of Sky News, posted a report of an interview Sky News conducted with the University & College Union (UCU). ...
Coronavirus: Fears over COVID-19 spread in universities as students set to make 'UK's biggest annual migration'
A higher education union warns that the government is risking public health by reopening campuses in a few weeks' time.
Universities could become the "care homes of the second wave of COVID-19", a higher education union has warned.
In an interview with Sky News, The University and College Union (UCU) says the government and universities are risking public health by pushing on with plans to fully reopen campuses in a few weeks' time.
The start of a new university year is "the biggest migration of people on an annual basis in the UK," Jo Grady, UCU general secretary, says.
"That's a million students, moving across country, cycling in and out of lockdown zones, of bubbles, of homes, into new cities, where we are not track and tracking those students, we are not testing those students," she said.
"We are seriously concerned that if the government and universities do not step in and discourage this... we could see universities becoming the care homes of the second wave of COVID-19."
The UCU wants, at the very least, for the government to enforce mandatory COVID-19 testing of students on arrival.
But some staff who work in universities believe that student numbers should be restricted altogether.
"It's not worth the risks of coming in for face-to-face teaching," university research fellow Eric Lybeck told Sky News.