Category Archives: Health and Safety

ARE YOU PLANNING AN OFF CAMPUS ACTIVITY WITH YOUR STUDENTS IN 2019?

A FIELD TRIP CAN BE MANY THINGS, INCLUDING A VISIT TO ANOTHER BUSINESS OR EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION, A NOHO MARAE, OR RESEARCH IN THE FIELD.

If you are staff planning an off campus activity, then you need to enrol in our Prepare for a safe field activity training session.

The University requires its employees (in particular Field Activity Leaders) to be well prepared by completing pre-planning and risk assessment for any Field Activity/Off Campus Activity.

To help you meet your Health & Safety (H&S) duty of care, we have scheduled training sessions for those of you who will be completing off site activities with students.

Sessions are available on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 19 March 2019 – Dovedale Campus, 9am – 12pm
  • Monday 24 June 2019 – Dovedale Campus, 9am – 12pm
  • Thursday 28 November 2019 – Dovedale Campus, 9am- 12pm

To enrol in a 2019 session please enrol on-line via UCPeople. You can find the enrolments page by logging in, clicking the Professional Development Tile, and searching for ‘Field Activities’.

If you require assistance, please contact our Learning Development Team learningdevelopment@canterbury.ac.nz or phone 93330.

Vice-Chancellor & Health, Safety and Wellbeing Award Winners 2018

2018 Vice-Chancellor General Staff Development Awards

Alongside Paul O’Flaherty, Executive Director HR | Kaihautū Matua Pūmanawa Tangata, Dr Rod Carr, Vice-Chancellor | Tumu Whakarae  presented awards to the following recipients at the ceremony on 30 August 2018:

  • Rebecca Hurrell
  • Rebecca Warr and Pamela Glover
  • Naomi Wilde
  • Catherine Woods
  • Jace Carson (who was unable to attend)

Held annually, the awards are a chance for our General Staff to be recognised and rewarded for seeking out exceptional professional development opportunities, such as: visits to other higher educational institutions, staff exchanges, specialised training, conferences and more.

Health, Safety & Wellbeing Awards 2018

Dr Rod Carr, Vice-Chancellor | Tumu Whakarae, presented alongside Steve Hunter, Health and Safety Manager, awards to the following recipients at the awards on 30 August 2018:

  • Mary Watson
  • Library H&S Group (Mushtak Dawood accepted on behalf)
  • Michael Sandridge
  • Charmaine Atherfold, Julie Stafford and Dave MacPherson

The Awards are designed to reward and encourage staff members to initiate innovative Health & Safety practices within their Department/Unit/College.

Congratulations to all of our winners 

Prevention of Harassment and Bullying Policy

UC’s Harassment Policy has recently been revised and is now called the Prevention of Harassment and Bullying Policy.

UC is committed to providing a harassment-free and bullying-free environment where all people are treated with respect and dignity and can contribute and participate to their full potential.

The UC community is encouraged to familiarise themselves with the revised policy via the UC Policy Library.

Making An Emergency Call On-Campus Using Your Mobile Phone

In 2015 I did a tip on who to call in an emergency situation on campus. Answer: call security on 6111.

What about an emergency call on-campus using your mobile phone?

If you are faced with an emergency on-campus and are using your mobile phone to call for help, call 0800 823 637. This is the emergency Security number. Program this into your phone now.

Why call the emergency Security number and not 111?

Emergency Services can easily have trouble finding you on the campus.
Security will:
– Ask you for relevant details, such as your name, your contact number, nature of your emergency, incident location, etc.
– Call emergency services (if required)
– Attend the site with an Artificial External Defibrillator (AED) (if required) – all security staff are trained first responders
– Bring Health Centre Staff to the site (if required)
– Meet the emergency services at a designated place on campus and escort them to the scene of the incident.

If you are NOT on-campus and need to make an emergency call, call 111. You can call 111 on a mobile phone even if the phone is out of credit. See the Emergency services website for information on calling emergency services in New Zealand.


For more great time-saving tips, look up our Archive of Tech Tips or look through the the Technology Information for Staff website.

Was this tip helpful to you? Anything else you want to know? Please leave a comment below.

You’ll find more learning at Learning and Development.

Animals on Campus Policy – what you need to know

Following careful consideration of concerns relating to the presence of dogs in UC buildings, a decision was made to establish an Animals on Campus Policy which allows animals on campus if restrained, and restricts access to animals in UC buildings except for exceptional circumstances that have been approved by the Vice-Chancellor.

The starting point for the policy was to consider the health and safety of all staff and students, including phobias and allergies triggered by the close proximity of animals. All staff should have the right to a safe and healthy working environment.

Since the policy was announced, the Vice-Chancellor has received a total of nine requests to allow ten animals into buildings. In two of these occasions, medical evidence was provided explaining the animal concerned supported the wellbeing of a staff member.

The general argument from these requests is that the animal concerned (mainly but not exclusively dogs) has regularly come into UC buildings, in some cases for a number of years, and it would be inconvenient if a past practice was not allowed to continue. The requests assert that these animals have never caused a problem and in some cases, written support has also been provided by colleagues in close proximity to the animal concerned.

No requests have been made for a certified support animal, such as a seeing eye dog, or a dog to support the hearing impaired etc.  

The Vice-Chancellor concluded that a strict interpretation of the policy is the only way to ensure consistent and fair treatment and therefore advised all applicants that they were no longer able to bring their animals into UC buildings.

He did however offer a transition period, strictly for those that had already submitted an exemption request, which will end on 31 December 2018. Staff were strongly encouraged to contact their HR Advisor for other ways UC can provide support with emotional health and wellbeing.

For more, please refer to the Animals on Campus Policy, now available from the Policy Library>

Supporting FAQs:

  1. Why is there a need for this policy?
    To ensure we meet our obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act and to provide a framework for balancing the needs and wellbeing of all people on campus.
  2. Who is liable if an animal on campus injures a student, staff member, or another animal: is it the animal’s owner, or the University?
    It is possible that SMT members, Council members and the animal’s owner will all be liable.
  3. Are injuries caused by animals on campus (registered or unregistered) covered by ACC?
    Probably, but that’s for ACC to determine on a case by case basis.
  4. Is it possible to make a case to the Vice-Chancellor for a psychological support animal?
    Possibly, although it is determined on a case by case basis. An individual student or staff member’s preferences and needs will be balanced with those of others on campus, the operational business needs and other matters set out in the policy. If the animal is a disability support dog that is certified by one of the organisations listed in the policy then VC approval will not be required.
  5. If it is possible to make a case for a psychological support animal, will a medical certificate from  a GP, counsellor or psychologist suffice?
    It will be determined on a case by case basis. A clear diagnosis is more compelling than a letter of support from a GP, as most pet owners could suggest their animal provides them with psychological support. Other potential methods of supporting a staff member’s wellbeing will also be taken into account.

Paul O’Flaherty
Executive Director of Human Resources | Kaihautū Matua Pūmanawa Tangata