Updated January 21, 2022

COVID-19 Updates and Information

There has been a lot of information going around about COVID-19; what students can do, what resources are available, where to get up to date information, financial support, and more. We wanted to create a space where all of the information can be accessible to you. This page will be updated as more information is received.

For the safety of our members and Douglas community, the DSU has decided to close the games area of the DSU building for the time being. This includes pool tables, table tennis, foosball and air hockey. The DSU remains open for services and studying at this time.

This fall, the Province will begin requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination for some non-essential or discretionary services, businesses and events. For Douglas, this means some of our activities will now require proof of vaccination of at least one dose starting September 13 and full vaccination (two doses) by October 24.

Proof of vaccination WILL be required for:
– Indoor ticketed concerts, theatre, dance, symphony and sporting events
– Fitness Centre access
– Intramurals, gym access and other indoor high intensity group exercise
– Indoor organized gatherings like conferences, meetings and workshops that welcome individuals from the community to participate (e.g. Speaker Series events)
– Indoor organized group recreational classes and activities
– DSU social events and club meetings & events
Proof of vaccination includes showing the BC Vaccine Card and a piece of valid government photo ID. For people from other provinces, territories or international visitors, the Government’s website has information about alternative documents*.

At this time, the Provincial Health Officer has not provided for any exemptions from the program. Individuals unable to show proof of vaccination will not be able to participate in activities that require the BC Vaccine Card.

Proof of vaccination WILL NOT be required for:
– Academic classes, and other educational activities required for those classes
– Workshops, info sessions, or events for current students (e.g. Friday Hangouts, Career Centre workshops, Service Fairs, etc.)
– Access to service areas on campus (e.g. Career Center, Enrolment Services, Counselling, etc.)
– On-campus cafeterias
– Indoor organized events with less than 50 people, except adult sports

Not to worry, activities that require proof of vaccination will include the requirement on all promotional material, as well as provide signage at the event, so you can make educated decisions about participation.

  • Douglas Students' Union Updates
  • Douglas College Updates
  • International Students
  • Income Assistance
  • Health & Wellness Resources
  • Mental Health Resources
  • Government Resources
  • Additional Resources

BC Federation of Students COVID-19 Update: Return to Campus Spring 2022
The return to school this January has not started the way any of us expected when we enrolled in classes in the Fall. The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is raising the concern amongst students and our campus communities on how to stay safe while getting our incredibly important education.

We also need to acknowledge that there is a lot of division around the best way to stay safe, which varies depending on your courses, location, health status, learning style, and responsibilities outside the classrooms. There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to this pandemic.

It is important to acknowledge that much of our post-secondary education system is not designed for a prolonged period of online learning. The post-secondary education experience is more than just attending lectures, labs, and practicums. Furthermore, access to student support services, library services, international student services, financial aid services, and vital cultural extracurricular activities do not always transition well to the virtual space. While students have managed to cope out of necessity at the start of the pandemic, it is needlessly burdensome to require them to make do without these critical activities for any longer.

WHAT YOUR STUDENTS’ UNIONS ARE DOING TO ADVOCATE FOR MEMBERS

The BC Federation of Students and our affiliated member students’ unions have been relentlessly advocating to all levels of government for more supports for students during and after the pandemic.

In April 2021, we hosted a Student COVID-19 Symposium, joined by students from across the province to discuss the struggles and triumphs of students while learning during the pandemic. During the Symposium, representatives of the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training were also present to hear it all directly from students. A report was created and sent to the government with a list of recommendations, which you can read here.

Last week, we sent a letter to the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training, re-asserting our recommendations to make campuses as safe as possible for the remainder of the Spring 2022 semester.

Those recommendations included:

  • Prioritizing students and members of the campus community to receive the third dose of the vaccine, and hosting on-campus vaccination clinics for easier access to boosters;
  • Ensuring that institutions’ policies do not penalise students who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, and allow students to stay home when sick without the need of getting a doctor’s note;
  • Providing the appropriate and free N95 facemasks for those without, and mandating their use in all common and shared spaces by the institution;
  • Encouraging hybrid learning models where appropriate so those who need to stay home for health reasons do not fall behind in their studies; and
  • Encouraging institutions to provide both in-person and online courses, so students can choose which class fits their life better.
ADVOCACY STEPS YOU CAN TAKE

If you are a student looking to get more involved in the discussion about learning during COVID, or if you feel like attending class is unsafe, here are some suggestions we have:

  • Reach out and express your concerns to your instructors and deans, especially if you are feeling unsafe attending classes, or if you require any sort of accommodations.
  • Reach out to your campus Ombudsperson for support in navigating institutional structures.
  • Ask your students’ union for assistance in getting the appropriate support if you experience roadblocks.
  • Share your concerns with institutional administrators – students should be a part of the decision-making about your campus community.

We will continue our advocacy for a system of education that is accessible and affordable to everyone. This pandemic has highlighted that our post-secondary education system has gaps. These gaps will not go away with the pandemic. We continue to fight for more funding, reducing student debt, and lowering tuition fees, through our Fund It Fix It campaign.

The pandemic has left many of us isolated and struggling to maintain good mental health. Here2Talk is a free and confidential counselling and referral service, available to students 24/7. KUU-US crisis response service is culturally-aware crisis support available to Indigenous students 24/7. Virtual mental health programs and services will continue to be offered by the provincial government.

As changes to the guidance or new recommendations become available, we will be sure to provide updates to keep you informed. We are eager to see students return to campus this Spring and look forward to supporting members in the transition back to in-person learning.


January 3, 2021 – Winter Update

To all our valued members, new and returning to Douglas College,

Happy New Year! Welcome to campus for the winter semester and for those returning to in-person learning, welcome back to campus! We hope that everyone is continuing to stay safe and taking care of themselves.

We are excited and optimistic for the coming winter semester. We are working to ensure you have access to all services and events on campus while following public health orders with increased safety measures. For those that are starting or continuing their education online, you can access everything the DSU has to offer through our online services and our drop-in sessions, or by contacting our office directly at 604-527-5110. While public health orders continue to evolve and be updated, we continue to monitor the changes and adapt to ensure that we are here for you!

IN-PERSON SERVICES

Following the provincial health authority and WorkSafe BC guidelines, we have made changes to our spaces to ensure the safety of all our staff, directors, and our members entering the building.

The Douglas Students’ Union continues to follow and be in accordance with Provincial Health Orders and Mandates set by the Public Health Office. As per Provincial Health Mandate, wearing a mask is mandatory in all public indoor settings, this includes all campus buildings and the DSU building. We encourage the practice of proper hygiene by washing your hands or using the available sanitizer, and ask that you maintain social distancing measures by following the appropriate signs found within the building.

OFFICE HOURS

The DSU offices will be open for in-person services starting back this week, January 4th, 2022.
New Westminster Office – Our front desk is located on Level 2 of the DSU building on the New Westminster campus. Our front desk is now open Monday through Friday from 9:30am-4:30pm.

Coquitlam Kiosk – Our Kiosk in the AB building on the Coquitlam campus (located next to security) is now open Monday through Friday from 9:30am-4:30pm.

VIRTUAL FRONT DESK HOURS

For those continuing with online and remote learning this semester, we will be continuing our online drop-in sessions to access the Front Desk. These will be held through Zoom for the first 6 weeks of the semester on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Watch our social media and website for drop in links and times.

LOCKERS

Lockers will be available for members at a cost of $10 per semester. Members can access the locker rentals through the New Westminster DSU L2 office and the Coquitlam Kiosk. Payments can be made by card or cash at this time. Updates are available on our website.

CLUBS

Clubs have returned to in-person activities and initiatives this semester. They are a great way to get involved and to meet fellow students at Douglas College. All students are welcome to join a current club, or to start their own.

Join us at our upcoming Club Fairs happening January 18th and 20th to see what clubs you can join, or to promote and recruit students for your club. You can also always check our website to see the list of active clubs.

For those wanting to start their own club, club registration packages are available at the beginning of January and due back by Thursday January 27th at 4pm. For more info about starting your own club, please email clubs@thedsu.ca.

DSU HANDBOOK DAY PLANNER

The DSU offers free handbook day planners for members. The handbook day planners are available for pick up from the DSU building in New Westminster and the DSU kiosk in Coquitlam.

We will also continue to offer a mail out service for our handbooks. If you would like your handbook mailed to you, we will mail it anywhere within Canada. To have your handbook mailed to you please fill out the form here.

FOOD BANK

The DSU Food Bank is an emergency service for those needing short-term assistance. To ensure the safety of our staff and all our members by minimizing the amount of traffic in our building and face to face interactions, we have transitioned the service online. The Food Bank will be available to all members starting January 17 with confirmation of enrolment. Members will be able to access the Food Bank twice per semester here.

PRINTING

The DSU offers students 100 free black and white prints. To access the printing service, stop by the DSU front desk in New West, or Kiosk in Coquitlam. Printing needs to be brought on a USB or emailed at time of visit during our office hours.

MENSTRUAL PRODUCTS

The DSU offers free menstrual products in all the washrooms in our building at the New Westminster campus during building hours: 8:30am-6:30pm, and at our kiosk at the Coquitlam campus during office hours: 9:30am-4:30pm.

We have been advocating to the college to provide free menstrual products in all the washrooms at both Douglas College campuses, and this past semester, we submitted an official proposal and request.

EMERGENCY FUND

In the Spring of 2020, the Douglas Students’ Union re-allocated $100,000 towards the Emergency Fund with Douglas College to support students during the Pandemic. Students facing financial hardships can apply directly for funding, please contact your Student Success Advisor directly at Douglas College.

LOUNGES AND STUDY SPACES

The DSU student lounges and study spaces remain open for students to access as needed. In New Westminster, there are student lounges on the 1st and 3rd floor of the DSU building. The 1st floor lounge has an open study space and table tennis. The 3rd floor lounge has pool tables, air hockey, foosball, student kitchen and open study spaces. There are also some bookable study rooms available on the 3rd and 2nd floor of the DSU building. To book one of the study rooms, please visit the DSU front desk or in advance online here.

To ensure everyone’s safety, we will be closing the games (pool tables, air hockey, foosball, and table tennis) in our lounges for the first few weeks of the semester, until it is safe to resume them. The lounges will remain open to be used as a study space for you to use as needed. 

The Lounges in New Westminster are open Monday-Friday 8:30am-6:30pm.

In Coquitlam, there is a student lounge in room A1190, with a microwave, lounge chairs and computers available for student use. The Lounge in Coquitlam is open Monday-Friday 8:30am-6:30pm.

U-PASS

The U-Pass BC program was reinstated in the Fall semester, after working with TransLink, the other participating post-secondary institutions and student associations, and with continued support from the Province of BC. Students who are registered in on-campus classes, co-op or practicum placements that are a minimum of three credits will continue to be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will be charged the U-Pass BC fee. Those taking online classes only will not be eligible for the U-Pass BC and will not be charged.

Students that are facing financial hardships as a result of not being eligible for the U-Pass and require assistance, can apply to the Emergency Fund by contacting your Student Success Advisor at Douglas College.

ADDITIONAL SERVICES TO SUPPORT YOU

All our services can all be found here.

EVENTS AND CAMPUS LIFE

Since returning to campus in the Fall, we have transitioned our events to be back on campus, while following provincial health orders. We will be continuing with on-campus events, and will host virtual events as needed. While provincial health orders are in place, some of our events will require a Vaccine Passport.

Some events you can expect this semester are: EDGE, movie days, wellness events, lunch events, end of semester outdoor beverage gardens (all ages welcome), as well as other social events to meet new friends and so much more! Stay up to date on events this winter through our website or social media pages.

ADVOCACY WORK

Access to affordable and equitable education is a priority for the DSU in hopes of removing barriers to education for students and those who need it. Some ways that we advocate for these are through advocating for fee regulation on international fees, more access to academic materials, and funding model adjustment for post-secondary institutions. For a full list of our campaign and advocacy work, please visit our website here.

Another part of the Advocacy work that we do is through our DSU Collectives. The DSU Collectives exist to represent and support different equity groups on campus. They are organized and run by the DSU constituency representatives, and they coordinate meetings, socials, workshops, events, and campaigns & advocacy work. The four collectives that we have are:

  • DSU Accessibility Collective
  • DSU Indigenous Students’ Collective
  • DSU Pride Collective
  • DSU Women’s Collective

To find out more about DSU Collectives or to join, please visit our website here.

OMBUDPERSON SERVICE

The DSU Ombudsperson provides a safe, confidential and informal environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The DSU Ombudsperson can also provide support and assistance with interpretation of Douglas policies and procedures.

Students seeking support can access the DSU Ombudsperson by email, phone, and video call sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly here to set up an appointment.

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns and will work hard to address them at all levels. As we continue to move forward we will overcome challenges together. We appreciate all your feedback, and we are committed to continuing to work hard to adjust and improve our services, in-person and online, to better help all of our members and advocate for more affordable and accessible post-secondary education. We will continue to advocate for students to the decision makers at Douglas College. If you ever have any issues, please feel free to reach out to us board@thedsu.ca

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we return to on-campus and in-person. We’re excited and look forward to seeing you in the New Year!

If you have questions or would like to access any of our services, please don’t hesitate to reach out and get in touch with us:
info@thedsu.ca
@thedsu6
www.thedsu.ca

Sincerely,
Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors


September 1, 2021 – Fall Update

To all our valued members, new and returning to Douglas College,  

Welcome to campus for the Fall semester and for those returning to in-person learning, welcome back to campus! We hope that everyone is continuing to stay safe and taking care of themselves. There have been so many changes over the 18 months for everyone and we want to make sure that you are all prepared for the fall semester and know that we are here for you.   

We are excited and optimistic for the coming fall semester. For those attending classes in-person this fall, we are working to ensure you have access to all services and events on campus while following public health orders with increased safety measures. For those that are starting or continuing their education online, you can access everything the DSU has to offer through our online services, our drop-in sessions, our online events, or by contacting our office directly at 604-527-5110. While public health orders continue to evolve and be updated, we continue to monitor the changes and adapt to ensure that we are here for you! 

IN-PERSON SERVICES  

  • Following the provincial health authority and WorkSafe BC guidelines, we have made changes to our spaces to ensure the safety of all our staff, directors, and our members entering the building.   
  • The Douglas Students’ Union continues to follow and be in accordance with Provincial Health Orders and Mandates set by the Public Health Office. As per the most recent Provincial Health Mandate released on August 25th, 2021, wearing a mask is mandatory while in the building and on campus. We encourage the practice of proper hygiene by washing your hands or using the available sanitizer, and ask that you maintain social distancing measures by following the appropriate signs found within the building.  

OFFICE HOURS  

  • New Westminster Office – Our front desk is located on Level 2 of the DSU building on the New Westminster campus. Our front desk is now open Monday through Friday from 9:30am-4:30pm. 
  • Coquitlam Kiosk – Our Kiosk in the AB building on the Coquitlam campus (located next to security) is now open Monday through Friday from 9:30am-4:30pm.  

VIRTUAL FRONT DESK HOURS   

  • For those continuing with online and remote learning this semester, we will be continuing our online drop-in sessions to access the Front Desk. These will be held weekly through Zoom. Watch our social media and website for drop in dates and times.   

LOCKERS  

  • Lockers will be available for members at a cost of $10 per semester. Members can access the locker rentals through the New Westminster DSU L2 office and the Coquitlam Kiosk. Payments can be made by card or cash at this time. Updates are available on our website.

CLUBS  

  • Clubs will be returning to in-person activities and initiatives this semester. They are a great way to get involved and to meet fellow students at Douglas College. All students are welcome to join a current club, or to start their own.  
  • Join us at our upcoming Club Fairs happening September 15 & 16 to see what clubs you can join, or to promote and recruit students for your club. You can also always check our website to see the list of active clubs.  
  • For those wanting to start their own club, club registration packages are available at the beginning of September and due back by Friday October 1st at 4pm. For more info about starting your own club, please email clubs@thedsu.ca.  

DSU HANDBOOK DAYPLANNER  

  • The DSU offers free handbook day planners for members. The handbook day planners are available for pick up from the DSU building in New Westminster and the DSU kiosk in Coquitlam.   
  • This year, we will also continue to offer a mail out service for our handbooks.  If you would like your handbook mailed to you, we will mail it anywhere within Canada. To have your handbook mailed to you please fill out the form on our website

FOOD BANK  

  • The DSU Food Bank is an emergency service for those needing short-term assistance. To ensure the safety of our staff and all our members by minimizing the amount of traffic in our building and face to face interactions, we have transitioned the service online. The Food Bank will be available to all members starting September 20 with confirmation of enrolment. Members will be able to access the Food Bank twice per semester through the form on our website. 

EMERGENT AND EMERGENCY NEEDS FUND  

  • In the Spring of 2020, the Douglas Students’ Union re-allocated $100,000 towards the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund with Douglas College to support students during the Pandemic. Students facing financial hardships can apply directly for funding at enrolmentservices@douglascollege.ca  

LOUNGES AND STUDY SPACES  

  • The DSU student lounges and study spaces are now open for students to access as needed. In New Westminster, the 1st and 3rd floor of the DSU buildingare both student lounges. The 1st floor lounge has open study space and a table tennis table and the 3rd floor lounge has pool tables, air hockey, foosball, student kitchen and open study spaces. There are also some bookable study rooms available on the 3rd and 2nd floor of the DSU building. To book one of the study rooms, please visit the DSU front desk or in advance online.
  • The Lounge in New Westminster is open Monday-Friday 8:30am-6:30pm. 
  • In Coquitlam, there is a student lounge in room A1190, with a microwave, lounge chairs and computers available for student use. The Lounge in Coquitlam is open Monday-Friday 8:30am-6:30pm. 

U-PASS   

  • The U-Pass BC program was reinstated September 1, after working with TransLink, the other participating post-secondary institutions and student associations, and with continued support from the Province of BC.  Students who are registered in on-campus classes, co-op or practicum placements that are a minimum of three credits will continue to be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will be charged the U-Pass BC fee. Those taking online classes only will not be eligible for the U-Pass BC and will not be charged.  
  • Students that are facing financial hardships as a result of not being eligible for the U-Pass and require assistance can apply to the Emergency and Emergent Needs Fund at enrolmentservices@douglascollege.ca   

ADDITIONAL SERVICES TO SUPPORT YOU ON AND OFF CAMPUS   

  • Health & Dental Plan (including Legal Assistance Plan)   
  • GOeVisit Healthcare   
  • Deals App    
  • DS App   
  • Here2Talk 

All our services can all be found on our website here.

EVENTS AND CAMPUS LIFE  

During the pandemic, we transitioned our events to online and virtual and continued to work toward building a sense of community for our members.  

As we return to campus this fall, we will have a mix of both on campus and virtual events throughout the semester.  

Please note that based on the recent Provincial Health Orders and Mandates, effective September 13th some on campus events and services will require a Vaccine Passport.  

Some events you can expect this semester are: our outdoor welcome beverage gardens (all ages welcome) EDGE, movie days, wellness events, guided painting, speed friending and other social events to meet new friends and so much more! Stay up to date on events this fall through our website or social media pages. 

ADVOCACY WORK   

Access to affordable and equitable education is a priority for the DSU, in hopes of removing some barriers to education for students and those who need it. Some ways that we advocate for these are through asking for a fee regulation on international fees, more access to academic materials, and funding model adjustment for post-secondary institutions. For a full list of our campaign and advocacy work, please visit our website here.

Another part of the Advocacy work that we do it through our DSU Collectives. The DSU Collectives exist to represent and support different equity groups on campus. They are organized and run by the DSU constituency representatives, and they coordinate meetings, socials, workshops, events, and campaigns & advocacy work. The four collectives that we have are: 

To find out more about DSU Collectives or to join, please visit our website here.

OMBUDPERSON SERVICE  

  • The DSU Ombudsperson provides a safe, confidential and informal environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The DSU Ombudsperson can also provide support and assistance with interpretation of Douglas policies and procedures.  
  • Students seeking support can access the DSU Ombudsperson by email, phone, video calls, and drop in sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly through our website to set up an appointment or to access the Virtual Drop-In Sessions. Keep an eye out on our social media and website for updates!  

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. We are working hard to address your concerns at all levels. As we move forward, we will overcome challenges together. We appreciate all your feedback, and we are committed to continue to work hard to adjust and improve our services, in-person and online, to better help all of our members and advocate for more affordable and accessible post-secondary education.  We will continue to advocate for students to the decision makers at Douglas College. If you ever have any issues, please feel free to reach out to us board@thedsu.ca   

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we return to on campus and in-person. We’re excited and look forward to seeing you on campus soon!  

If you have questions or would like to access any of our services, please don’t hesitate to reach out and get in touch with us:
info@thedsu.ca
@thedsu6
www.thedsu.ca  

Sincerely,
Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors 


May 10, 2021 – Summer Update  

 To all our valued members, new and returning to Douglas College, 

Welcome to the summer semester! We hope that everyone is continuing to stay safe and taking care of themselves. There have been so many changes over the 15 months and we want to make sure that everyone is prepared for the summer semester and know that we are here for you.  

We are excited and cautiously optimistic as to what the fall semester will bring. There are many updates coming from the BC Government and Provincial Health Office and will be making plans as we hear more and move closer to the Fall semester. But until we hear more and as the BC Restart plan moves forward, here are the services and advocacy work we have transitioned to online for our members to access.  

IN-PERSON SERVICES 
  • Following the provincial health authority guidelines and WorkSafe BC guidelines, we have made changes to our spaces to ensure the safety of all our staff, directors, and our members entering the building.  
  • While in the building and on campus, wearing a mask is now mandatory, we encourage the practice of proper hygiene by washing your hands or using the available sanitizer, and maintain social distancing measures by following the appropriate signs found within the building.  
OFFICE HOURS 
  • New Westminster Office – Our front desk is located on Level 2 of the DSU building on the New Westminster campus. Our front desk is now open Monday through Friday from 10am to 3pm 
  • Coquitlam Kiosk – Our Kiosk in the AB building on the Coquitlam campus (located next to security) is now open Monday through Friday from 10am to 3pm. 
  • Coquitlam Office A1190 – The offices and lounge located in A1190 will be accessed by appointment only until further notice. If you require the assistance of a DSU staff member, please email info@thedsu.ca to set up an appointment. If you require assistance with lockers, your health and dental plan, or general DSU inquiries, please visit our Kiosk in the AB Atrium. 
VIRTUAL FRONT DESK HOURS  
LOCKERS 
  • Lockers will be available for members at a cost of $10 per semester. Members can access the locker rentals through the New Westminster DSU L2 office and the Coquitlam Kiosk. All payments must be made by card, as the DSU will not be accepting cash at this time. Updates on our website at http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/lockers/
CLUBS 
  • Clubs are currently operating in a virtual setting instead of on campus, but are a great way to get involved and to meet fellow students at Douglas College. All students are welcome to join a current club, or to start their own. To learn more about the active clubs, you can join our virtual club fairs (happening mid-January) or head over to our website https://www.thedsu.ca/club-collective/.  
  • For those wanting to start their own club, club registration packages will be available at the beginning of September. For more info about starting your own club, please email clubs@thedsu.ca. 
SERVICES TO SUPPORT YOU WHILE YOU ARE OFF CAMPUS 

All our services can all be found at  http://www.thedsu.ca/services/  

  • Health & Dental Plan (including Legal Assistance Plan)  
  • GOeVisit Healthcare  
  • Deals App  
  • Emergency Food Bank  
  • DS App  
  • Here2Talk 
DSU HANDBOOK DAYPLANNER 
  • The DSU offers free handbook dayplanners for members. This year, we have been offering a mail out service for our handbooks. To date, nearly 1800 members have received theirs mailed to their home. If you would like your handbook mailed to you, we will mail it anywhere within Canada. To have your handbook mailed to you please fill out the form here: https://forms.gle/qdbCbQUiZB7gsibZ9 
  • The handbook dayplanners are also available for pick up from the DSU building or kiosk.  
FOOD BANK 
  • The DSU Food Bank is an emergency service for those needing short term assistance. To ensure the safety of our staff and all our members by minimizing the amount of traffic in our building and face to face interactions, we have transitioned the service online. The Food Bank will be available to all members starting January 18 with confirmation of enrolment. Members will be able to access the Food Bank twice per semester ahttp://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/food-bank/ 
EMERGENT AND EMERGENCY NEEDS FUND 
  • This past spring, the Douglas Students’ Union re-allocated $100,000 towards the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund with Douglas College. Students facing financial hardships can apply directly for the funding at financialaid@douglascollege.ca. 
LOUNGES AND STUDY SPACES 
  • Currently the lounge and study spaces in the DSU building remain closed until we can ensure proper physical distancing measures can be maintained to keep our members safe during their time on campus. We are committed to working towards opening the space with proper measures in place so that members can make use of the quiet study spaces while they are on campus. 
OMBUDPERSON SERVICE 
  • The DSU Ombudsperson provides a safe, confidential and informal environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The DSU Ombudsperson can also provide support and assistance with interpretation of Douglas policies and procedures. 
  • Students seeking support can access the DSU Ombudsperson by email, phone, video calls, and drop in sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly through http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/ombudsperson/ to set up an appointment or to access the Virtual Drop-In Sessions. Keep an eye out on our social media and website for updates! 
U-PASS  
  • The U-Pass BC program was reinstated September 1, after working with TransLink, the other participating post-secondary institutions and student associations, and with continued support from the Province of BC.  Students who are registered in on-campus classes, co-op or practicum placements that are a minimum of three credits will continue to be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will be charged the U-Pass BC fee. This means that the majority of students, who are taking online classes only, will I not be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will not be charged.  
  • Students that are facing financial hardships as a result of not being eligible for the U-Pass and require assistance can apply to the Emergency and Emergent Needs Fund at financialaid@douglascollege.ca. 
ADVOCACY WORK  

The entire Douglas Community of students, faculty and staff, are collectively facing challenges due to the global pandemic that has uprooted many of our established processes, teaching methodologies and plans. The transition to online delivery was swift, for some it was an easy change, for others, barriers have become apparent, and we are all doing our best to adapt to our new normal. The uncertainty of current and future employment for students and worry about physical health adds to the anxiety that we are all experiencing. 

  • This semester, the DSU met with Douglas College Administration and shared learning challenges students are facing from online learning in the summer and fall semesters. We presented a report that outlined specific challenges that included online teaching standards, learning environment, evaluations and communications. Administration and the DSU will continue to work together to find solutions and address challenges that students are facing.  
  • We hosted a series of Douglas College Budget 2021-22 Consultation Zoom Chats, which gave students an opportunity to express and share their thoughts on the Douglas College budget and their suggestions and priorities. The DSU also created a space on the website for students to provide additional comments for the 2021-22 Douglas College Budget. We will incorporate the feedback into the DSU Budget Submission to Douglas College. 
  • We continue to advocate for students to the decision makers at Douglas College. If you ever have any issues, please feel free to reach out to us board@thedsu.ca  

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. We are working hard to address your concerns at all levels. As we move forward, we will overcome challenges together. We appreciate all your feedback and we are committed to continue to work hard to adjust and improve our services, in-person and online, to better help all of our members and advocate for more affordable and accessible post-secondary education.  

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we can during the winter semester. 

If you have questions or would like to access our services, please don’t hesitate to reach out and get in touch with us:
info@thedsu.ca
@thedsu6
www.thedsu.ca 

Sincerely,
Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors 


January 4, 2021 – Winter Update

To all our valued members, new and returning to Douglas College,

The winter semester is just around the corner and we are working hard on preparations to welcome you to a new semester. While this year has been very different, the Douglas Students’ Union is still here to support and represent you through our services, campus life and advocacy work.

We hope that everyone is continuing to stay safe and taking care of themselves. There have been so many changes over the past 9 months and we want to make sure that everyone is prepared for the coming semester and know that we are here for you.

Over the summer, we made significant changes to our services to transition online. Throughout the fall term, members have accessed our services online and in-person. As the majority of course delivery will continue online, we will continue to offer our services to students through online drop-in sessions, virtual meetings, email, and phone, and we will continue to be here in-person for those that require direct in-person access so that we can meet the needs of all our members.

In-Person Service

  • Following the provincial health authority guidelines and WorkSafe BC guidelines, we have made changes to our spaces to ensure the safety of all our staff, directors, and our members entering the building.
  • While in the building and on campus, wearing a mask is now mandatory, we encourage the practice of proper hygiene by washing your hands or using the available sanitizer, and maintain social distancing measures by following the appropriate signs found within the building.

Office Hours

  • New Westminster Office – Our front desk is located on Level 2 of the DSU building on the New Westminster campus. Our front desk is now open Monday through Friday from 10am to 3pm
  • Coquitlam Kiosk – Our Kiosk in the AB building on the Coquitlam campus (located next to security) is now open Monday through Friday from 10am to 3pm.
  • Coquitlam Office A1190 – The offices and lounge located in A1190 will be accessed by appointment only until further notice. If you require the assistance of a DSU staff member, please email info@thedsu.ca to set up an appointment. If you require assistance with lockers, your health and dental plan, or general DSU inquiries, please visit our Kiosk in the AB Atrium.

Virtual Front Desk hours

Lockers

  • Lockers will be available for members at a cost of $10 per semester. Members can access the locker rentals through the New Westminster DSU L2 office and the Coquitlam Kiosk. All payments must be made by card, as the DSU will not be accepting cash at this time. Updates on our website at http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/lockers/

Clubs

  • Clubs are currently operating in a virtual setting instead of on campus, but are a great way to get involved and to meet fellow students at Douglas College. All students are welcome to join a current club, or to start their own. To learn more about the active clubs, you can join our virtual club fairs (happening mid-January) or head over to our website https://www.thedsu.ca/club-collective/.
  • For those wanting to start their own club, club registration packages are available January 4th and are due back, completed, by Thursday January 28th. For more info about starting your own club, please email clubs@thedsu.ca.

Services to Support you while you are off campus

All our services can all be found at  http://www.thedsu.ca/services/ 

  • Health & Dental Plan (including Legal Assistance Plan)
  • GOeVisit Healthcare
  • Deals App
  • Emergency Food Bank
  • DS App
  • Here2Talk

DSU Handbook Dayplanner

  • The DSU offers free handbook dayplanners for members. This year, we have been offering a mail out service for our handbooks. To date, nearly 1800 members have received theirs mailed to their home. If you would like your handbook mailed to you, we will mail it anywhere within Canada. To have your handbook mailed to you please fill out the form here: https://forms.gle/qdbCbQUiZB7gsibZ9
  • The handbook dayplanners are also available for pick up from the DSU building or kiosk.

Food Bank

  • The DSU Food Bank is an emergency service for those needing short term assistance. To ensure the safety of our staff and all our members by minimizing the amount of traffic in our building and face to face interactions, we have transitioned the service online. The Food Bank will be available to all members starting January 18 with confirmation of enrolment. Members will be able to access the Food Bank twice per semester ahttp://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/food-bank/

Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund

  • This past spring, the Douglas Students’ Union re-allocated $100,000 towards the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund with Douglas College. Students facing financial hardships can apply directly for the funding at financialaid@douglascollege.ca.

Lounges and Study Spaces

  • Currently the lounge and study spaces in the DSU building remain closed until we can ensure proper physical distancing measures can be maintained to keep our members safe during their time on campus. We are committed to working towards opening the space with proper measures in place so that members can make use of the quiet study spaces while they are on campus.

Ombudperson Service

  • The DSU Ombudsperson provides a safe, confidential and informal environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The DSU Ombudsperson can also provide support and assistance with interpretation of Douglas policies and procedures.
  • Students seeking support can access the DSU Ombudsperson by email, phone, video calls, and drop in sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly through http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/ombudsperson/ to set up an appointment or to access the Virtual Drop-In Sessions. Keep an eye out on our social media and website for updates!

U-Pass 

  • The U-Pass BC program was reinstated September 1, after working with TransLink, the other participating post-secondary institutions and student associations, and with continued support from the Province of BC.  Students who are registered in on-campus classes, co-op or practicum placements that are a minimum of three credits will continue to be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will be charged the U-Pass BC fee. This means that the majority of students, who are taking online classes only, will I not be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will not be charged.
  • Students that are facing financial hardships as a result of not being eligible for the U-Pass and require assistance can apply to the Emergency and Emergent Needs Fund at financialaid@douglascollege.ca.

Advocacy Work 

The entire Douglas Community of students, faculty and staff, are collectively facing challenges due to the global pandemic that has uprooted many of our established processes, teaching methodologies and plans. The transition to online delivery was swift, for some it was an easy change, for others, barriers have become apparent and we are all doing our best to adapt to our new normal. The uncertainty of current and future employment for students and worry about physical health adds to the anxiety that we are all experiencing.

  • This semester, the DSU met with Douglas College Administration and shared learning challenges students are facing from online learning in the summer and fall semesters. We presented a report that outlined specific challenges that included online teaching standards, learning environment, evaluations and communications. Administration and the DSU will continue to work together to find solutions and address challenges that students are facing.
  • We hosted a series of Douglas College Budget 2021-22 Consultation Zoom Chats, which gave students an opportunity to express and share their thoughts on the Douglas College budget and their suggestions and priorities. The DSU also created a space on the website for students to provide additional comments for the 2021-22 Douglas College Budget. We will incorporate the feedback into the DSU Budget Submission to Douglas College.
  • We continue to advocate for students to the decision makers at Douglas College. If you ever have any issues, please feel free to reach out to us board@thedsu.ca 

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. We are working hard to address your concerns at all levels. As we move forward, we will overcome challenges together. We appreciate all your feedback and we are committed to continue to work hard to adjust and improve our services, in-person and online, to better help all of our members and advocate for more affordable and accessible post-secondary education.

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we can during the winter semester.

If you have questions or would like to access our services, please don’t hesitate to reach out and get in touch with us:
info@thedsu.ca
@thedsu6
www.thedsu.ca

Sincerely,
Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors


September 1, 2020 – Fall Update

To all our valued members, new and returning to Douglas College,

The fall semester is just around the corner and we are working hard on preparations to welcome you to a new academic year. While things look and feel different, the Douglas Students’ Union is still here to support and represent you through our services, campus life and advocacy work.

We hope that everyone is continuing to stay safe and taking care of themselves. There have been so many changes over the past 6 months and we want to make sure that everyone is prepared for the coming semester and know that we are here for you. 

We have been busy over the summer making significant changes to our services to go online so that you can access our services safely and remotely and to ensure that all members have the opportunity to benefit from our services. While we will continue to offer all of our services online, we want to let you know of the changes that are coming this fall to the DSU.

In-Person Services

  • Following the provincial health authority guidelines and WorkSafe BC guidelines, we have made changes to our spaces to ensure the safety of all our staff, directors, and our members entering the building. While in the building, we encourage everyone to wear a mask, practice proper hygiene by washing your hands or using the available sanitizer, and maintain social distancing measures by following the appropriate signs found within the building. 

Office Hours

  • New Westminster Office – Our front desk is located on Level 2 of the DSU building on the New Westminster campus. Our front desk is now open Monday through Thursday from 10am to 3pm
  • Coquitlam Kiosk – Our Kiosk in the AB building on the Coquitlam campus (located next to security) is now open Tuesday through Friday from 10am to 3pm.
  • Coquitlam Office A1190 – The offices and lounge located in A1190 will be accessed by appointment only until further notice. If you require the assistance of a DSU staff member, please email info@thedsu.ca to set up an appointment. If you require assistance with lockers, your health and dental plan, or general DSU inquiries, please visit our Kiosk in the AB Atrium.

Virtual Front Desk hours

Lockers

  • Lockers will be available for members at a cost of $10 per semester. Members can access the locker rentals through the New Westminster DSU L2 office and the Coquitlam Kiosk. All payments must be made by card, as the DSU will not be accepting cash at this time. Updates on our website at http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/lockers/

Clubs

  • Clubs will continue to operate this year, with some adjustments.Clubs will be able to operate on campus, online and off campus, but are being asked to follow safety measures while operating. Club registration packages will all be done online (please email clubs@thedsu.ca to request a package). We will also be hosting a virtual club fair this year on our social media platforms. 

Services to Support you while you are off campus
All our services can all be found at  http://www.thedsu.ca/services/ 

DSU Handbook Dayplanner

  • The DSU offers free handbook dayplanners for members. They are available for pick up from the DSU building or kiosk. This year, we are also offering a mail out service for our handbooks. If you would like your handbook mailed to you we will mail it anywhere within Canada. To have your handbook mailed to you please fill out the form here: https://forms.gle/qdbCbQUiZB7gsibZ9

Food Bank

  • The DSU Food Bank is an emergency service for those needing short term assistance. To ensure the safety of our staff and all our members by minimizing the amount of traffic in our building and face to face interactions, we have transitioned the service online. The Food Bank will be available to all members starting September 21 with confirmation of enrolment. Members will be able to access the Food Bank twice per semester at http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/food-bank/

Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund

  • This past spring, the Douglas Students’ Union re-allocated $100,000 towards the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund with Douglas College. Students facing financial hardships can apply directly for the funding at financialaid@douglascollege.ca.

Lounges and Study Spaces

  • Currently the lounge and study spaces in the DSU building remain closed until we can ensure proper physical distancing measures can be maintained to keep our members safe during their time on campus. We are committed to working towards opening the space this term with proper measures in place so that members can make use of the quiet study spaces while they are on campus.

Ombudperson Service

  • The DSU Ombudsperson provides a safe, confidential and informal environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The DSU Ombudsperson can also provide support and assistance with interpretation of Douglas policies and procedures.
  • Students seeking support can access the DSU Ombudsperson by email, phone, video calls, and drop in sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly through http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/ombudsperson/ to set up an appointment. Keep an eye out on our social media and website for updates!

U-Pass 

  • We are pleased to announce that Douglas College and the Douglas Students’ Union are resuming the U-Pass BC program starting September 1, after working with TransLink, the other participating post-secondary institutions and student associations, and with continued support from the Province of BC.  Students who are registered in on-campus classes, co-op or practicum placements that are a minimum of three credits will continue to be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will be charged the U-Pass BC fee. This means that the majority of students, who are taking online classes only, will not be eligible for a U-Pass BC and will not be charged
  • Students that are facing financial hardships and require assistance can apply to the Emergency and Emergent Needs Fund at financialaid@douglascollege.ca.

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. As we move forward, we will overcome challenges together. We are committed to continue to work hard to adjust and improve our services, in-person and online, to better help all of our members and advocate for more affordable and accessible post-secondary education.

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we can during this fall semester.

If you have questions or would like to access our services, please don’t hesitate to reach out and get in touch with us:
info@thedsu.ca
@thedsu6
www.thedsu.ca

Sincerely,

Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors


July 9, 2020 – Summer Update

To our valued members and students at Douglas College,

We hope everyone is staying safe and taking care of themselves and each other as we move to the next stages of the COVID-19 Pandemic in BC. There are changes happening with lots of daily updates as the province takes the next steps towards opening up. We know many of you have anxiety about health concerns and personal safety. Please know that we are listening to members reaching out to us and we are working to keep everyone updated with current provincial and institutional announcements.

We continue to receive a lot of questions and inquiries about our services, spaces, and fees and we want to address your concerns to the best of our ability with the information we do know.

Since the Douglas College suspension of on campus classes and face to face services in March, we have transitioned our services to alternate delivery and are continuously working on ways to support students.

Students expressed their financial concerns to us and we worked with Douglas College to create the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund so that financial support can be directly given to students in need right away for those in the winter and summer 2020 semester. This fund will now be available for students facing continued financial hardships throughout the fall semester!

Although access to the DSU Students’ Union Building is currently unavailable, we are working on a plan to re-open our doors for the fall semester and to provide a mixture of on-campus and online services. We are working on safety protocols in line with provincial health authority regulations that will allow students to access our building and services in person while staying safe, healthy, and maintaining social distance.

We continue to advocate and lobby on behalf of students. We hear your concerns and are working everyday to address these issues and bring forward your concerns to the College. We have heard from students their concerns about tuition and planned tuition increases. On June 25th, we submitted a letter to Douglas College calling for a tuition freeze. You can view the letter on our website here.
Unfortunately, Douglas College has decided to move forward with tuition fee increases this fall.

We are currently working with Translink, Douglas College, and 9 other post-secondary student associations and institutions from across the greater Vancouver area on the U-Pass program. We successfully negotiated a refund of April fees after classes transitioned online in response to the pandemic. As all classes in the summer semester were delivered online, the program was suspended. With a hybrid form of delivery planned for the fall, students with required in-person or in-class instruction have been assessed the fee, as per the agreement with Translink. We continue to work every day to find a solution that will provide more students with access to affordable transit for the fall semester.

We also continue to work at advocating towards a more accessible post-secondary education system for all. We will continue collaborating with the British Columbia Federation of Students (BCFS) on fighting to get more funding to our institutions, reducing financial barriers (such as the BC Access Grant), working with our instructors to get more adoptions of OERs to reduce the costs of academic materials, pushing for the elimination of interest on federal students loans (just like we did for BC student loans) and will be keeping up our work to push for improvements to services that students depend on.

Your Douglas Students’ Union elected representatives have been busy working on the following:

  • Douglas Students’ Union Building & Office Spaces – Assessing the current health authority requirements and working on solutions to re-open the DSU building and offices for the fall semester
  • Re-allocation of funds to contribute $100,000 to the Douglas College Emergent & Emergency Needs Financial Aid to get money directly to students that are in need. To apply, domestic and international students can contact Financial Aid directly at financialaid@douglascollege.ca
    *Extended through the fall semester!
  • U-Pass – Working with Translink, Douglas College and 9 other post-secondary institutions and their student associations to suspend the U-Pass for the summer semester while on campus courses are suspended. We successfully advocated to ensure that students who did not use their U-Pass in April received a refund. Those still requiring transit throughout the summer semester that are also facing financial difficulties can apply for aid through the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund by discussing their situation with a Student Success Advisor at financialaid@douglascollege.ca
  • Office hours have transitioned to online drop-in sessions through Zoom. Watch our social media and website for drop in dates and times.
  • Ombudsperson Service has transitioned to alternate delivery and has been helping many students from the end of the winter semester and throughout the summer semester to navigate issues and concerns emerging from the transition to online delivery. The service continues to be available by email, phone, video calls, and drop in sessions through ZOOM. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly http://www.thedsu.ca/our-services/ombudsperson/ or watch our social media and website for drop in dates and times.
  • Services to support you while you are off campus: Health & Dental Plan (including Legal Assistance Plan), GOeVisit Healthcare, Deals App, Emergency Food Bank, DS App (Housing Listings) http://www.thedsu.ca/services/
  • Other Financial Aid – DSU Mature Students’ Bursary, DSU Domestic Student Award (available through Douglas College Financial Aid) financialaid@douglascollege.ca
  • Student Advocacy at the college level – we are communicating with Douglas College every day to relay student concerns and lobbying them for answers
  • Student Advocacy at the provincial and federal level (along with the BCFS) – we are communicating with the Ministry of Advanced Education and the Government of BC the needs of students and lobbying them for more financial and mental health support for students. On April 16, Here2Talk was launched by the provincial government to provide free, confidential, 24/7 mental health counselling service for students. Access the service on their website https://here2talk.ca/
  • Information gathering & communicating directly with students through our various channels to answer questions and provide information to navigate our new environment due to COVID-19. Please check our webpage for updates http://www.thedsu.ca/covid-19/

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. We know that students are worried and we are doing our best to not only gather information but also advocating for students behind the scenes. We appreciate that students are reaching out, talking to us and sharing with us.

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we can during this crisis and transition.

We look forward to welcoming you all back for the fall semester, be it in person or digitally, and to keep meeting the ever changing needs of our members.

If you have questions or would like to access our services, please contact info@thedsu.ca

Sincerely,

Your Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors


April 15, 2020 – Letter Regarding DSU Fees

To Douglas College Students,

We have received a lot of questions and inquiries about the Students’ Union fees and we want to address your concerns. Although access to the DSU Students’ Union Building is currently unavailable, we want you all to know that we are still here working for you and want to help bring a better understanding of where your fees are going as we have transitioned all of our services online.

Since the Douglas College suspension of on campus classes and face-to-face services in March, we have transitioned our services to alternate delivery and are continuously working on ways to support students. Students expressed their financial concerns to us and we worked with Douglas College to create the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund so that financial support can be directly given to students in need right away for those in the Winter and Summer 2020 semester.

As we navigate our new reality and our future along with you, we are planning for new ways to deliver services and support students – we will continue this work over the summer and into the fall and take this opportunity to find new and innovative ways to deliver services to you in collaboration with the British Columbia Federation of Students (BCFS). We are also making plans for campus life initiatives including support for our clubs.

We continue to advocate and lobby on behalf of students. We hear your current concerns and are working everyday to address these issues and bring forward your concerns to the College. We do not have all the answers but we are working to provide updates when information becomes available.

We also continue to work at advocating towards a more accessible post-secondary education system for all. We will continue collaborating with the BCFS on fighting to get more funding to our institutions, reducing financial barriers (such as the BC Access Grant), working with our instructors to get more adoptions of OERs to reduce the costs of academic materials, pushing for the elimination of interest on federal students loans (just like we did for BC student loans) and will be keeping up our work to push for improvements to services that students depend on.

Your Douglas Students’ Union elected representatives have been busy working on the following:

• Re-allocation of funds to contribute $100,000 to the Douglas College Emergent & Emergency Needs Financial Aid to get money directly to students that are in need. To apply, students can contact Douglas College Financial Aid directly at financialaid@douglascollege.ca

• Working with Translink, Douglas College and 9 other post-secondary institutions and their student associations to suspend the U-Pass for the summer semester while on campus courses are suspended. We continue to work on ensuring that students not using their U-Pass in April will receive a refund. Those still requiring transit throughout the summer semester that are also facing financial difficulties can apply for aid through the Emergent and Emergency Needs Fund by discussing their situation with a Student Success Advisor at financialaid@douglascollege.ca

• Ombudsperson Service has transitioned to alternate delivery – available by email, phone and video calls. Students can contact the Ombudsperson directly http://www.thedsu.ca/ourservices/ombudsperson/

• Services to support you while you are off campus: Health & Dental Plan (including Legal Assistance Plan), GOeVisit Healthcare, Deals App, Emergency Food Bank, DS App (Housing Listings) http://www.thedsu.ca/services/

• Other Financial Aid – DSU Mature Students’ Bursary, DSU Domestic Student Award – available through Douglas College Financial Aid – financialaid@douglascollege.ca

• Student Advocacy at the college level – we are communicating with Douglas College every day to relay student concerns and lobbying them for answers

• Student Advocacy at the provincial and federal level (along with the BCFS) – we are communicating with the Ministry of Advanced Education and the Government of BC the needs of students and lobbying them for more financial and mental health support for students

• Information gathering and communicating directly with students through our various channels to answer questions and provide information to navigate our new environment due to COVID-19. Please check our webpage for updates http://www.thedsu.ca/covid-19/

We are listening and will continue to listen to you and your concerns. We know that students are worried and we are doing our best to not only gather information but also advocating for students behind the scenes. We appreciate that students are reaching out, talking to us and sharing with us.

Thank you for your understanding and patience while we continue to work to support you as best as we can during this crisis and transition.

If you have questions or would like to access our services, please contact info@thedsu.ca

Sincerely,
Douglas Students’ Union Board of Directors


April 3, 2020

We are pleased to announce our gift of $100,000 to the creation of the Emerging and Emergency Needs fund to support students through the COVID-19 crisis. With contributions from the Ministry of Advanced Education , Douglas College Foundation and Alumni Relations, Douglas College International Departments along with donations from many generous partners and donors, over $600,000 will be made available to support our students in this time of uncertainty and need.

Students are experiencing a reduction or loss of employment, changes to housing and healthcare along with the stress of adapting to online course delivery. We have heard from many students the additional anxiety of financial need and have worked on this initiative to be able to give you support immediately.

This fund will be accessible for domestic and international students to help cover basic needs for living and unanticipated costs so you can continue with your studies on this unprecedented situation. This financial aid does not require a GPA minimum and is non-repayable so you don’t have to worry about paying back. Students can expect to receive funding within two weeks after approval.

Students who are experiencing unforeseen hardship as a result of the COVID-19 situation can email Douglas College Financial Aid department – financialaid@douglascollege.ca with a request to access the Emerging and Emergency Needs Fund.


March 19, 2020

At 3pm today, we will be closing our office doors until further notice. We believe that this is a necessary precaution to protect our members, staff, and community.

At this time, we want to reassure our members that we are here for you and will be working to maintain our services in other alternative methods.

Email: Info@thedsu.ca
Phone: 604-527-5110
We will be checking our messages daily and will work to respond within 2 business days.


March 16, 2020

Today at 12:00pm, Douglas College has announced they are shifting to alternative modes of instruction and all in-person instruction is suspended effective immediately for the rest of the Winter semester. For questions about your classes and the transition period, please reach out to your instructors.

The Douglas Students’ Union understands that the evolving situation with COVID-19 is causing stress and anxiety. No instances of COVID-19 have been reported on campus. We will continue to monitor the situation and follow the best advice available from provincial health authorities to help reduce the spread of the virus and keep you updated as more information becomes available.

During this time, the Douglas Students’ Union will remain accessible to students who depend on our services until we are advised to do otherwise. We will be taking extra precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of our members, staff and elected representatives.

New Westminster: The DSU Lounges on L1 and L3 at the Students’ Union Building will be closed effective 2:00pm today until further notice. All activities and bookings are suspended until further notice. Our front desk will be accessible during regular hours 9:30am-4:30pm and we encourage students to practice social distancing by only having 2 students in the office at a time and to follow proper hygiene practices.

Coquitlam: The DSU Lounge at A1190 will be closed effective 2:00pm today. The DSU Kiosk will be closed effective 4:30pm today until further notice.

If you need to access DSU services but are not able to be on campus, please contact us at info@thedsu.ca.

We encourage students to follow proper hygiene practices and social distancing and stay up to date on COVID-19 from:
BC Centre for Disease Control – http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19
Government of Canada – https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/being-prepared.html


March 15, 2020

This morning, following recommendations from the local health authority and the provincial and federal government, Douglas College has announced that as of March 20, it will be transitioning away from in-person course delivery for the remainder of the semester. For questions about your classes and the transition period, please reach out to your instructors.

The Douglas Students’ Union understands that the evolving situation with COVID-19 is causing stress and anxiety. The province’s Chief Medical Officer advises that the risk to the College community due to COVID-19 remains low. We will continue to monitor the situation and follow the recommendations from our provincial public health officers and keep you updated as more information becomes available.

During this time, the Douglas Students’ Union will stay open and remain accessible to students who depend on our services until we are advised to do otherwise. We will be taking extra precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of our members, staff and elected representatives.

New Westminster: The DSU Lounges on L1 and L3 at the Students’ Union Building will be open, however our pool tables, foosball table, table tennis, and air hockey table will be closed until further notice. Our front desk will be accessible and we encourage students to practice social distancing by only having 2 students in the office at a time and to follow proper hygiene practices.

Coquitlam: The DSU Lounge at A1190 will remain open for the time being but as it is a small space, we encourage students to practice social distancing and follow proper hygiene practices. The DSU Kiosk will remain accessible at this time.

As we previously shared, all of our upcoming events are canceled.

If you need to access DSU services but are not able to be on campus, please contact us at info@thedsu.ca.

We encourage students to follow proper hygiene practices and social distancing and stay up to date on COVID-19 from:
BC Centre for Disease Control – http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19
Government of Canada – https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/being-prepared.html


March 13, 2020
Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, we have decided to cancel all of our events next week (March 16-20). We are wanting to take precautions with students health and because of this thought it in the students best interest to cancel the Spring Lunch events.
Last night, the BC Government announced that all events for over 250 people are to be cancelled, which confirmed our decision to cancel.
At this time, Douglas College and classes remain open and ongoing, but please keep an eye on their website (https://www.douglascollege.ca/about-douglas/news-and-media/notifications/2020/March/coronavirus) for updates.
And as a reminder, please wash your hands, avoid touching your face, and stay home if you are feeling unwell.
We will continue to update this page and our social media channels as these progress and if anything else is cancelled in the future.

Douglas College has prepared a FAQ page on their website for addressing concerns related to COVID-19 and returning to campus. Please visit www.douglascollege.ca/student-services/student-resources/covid19 for more information from Douglas College.


JANUARY 7: IN-PERSON CLASSES RESUME MONDAY, JANUARY 10
Douglas College will return to in-person classes on Monday, January 10.

As the pandemic continues to evolve, the College, along with all other colleges and institutes in the sector, are supporting academic continuity by returning to campus. The Provincial Health Officer (PHO) has reassured the College that based on the experience in B.C, with every variant, including the Omicron variant, transmission in structured settings continues to be uncommon.

Douglas College campuses, like other post-secondary campuses, are structured settings with multiple layers of protection in place to support a safe learning environment, including meeting or exceeding HVAC and ventilation requirements, encouraging vaccination, enforcing mask mandates, and supporting students and employees to stay home when symptomatic or ill.

We look forward to welcoming you back to campus next week. To support the health and safety of our College community, we ask everyone to:

  • Get vaccinated, if able to do so. Vaccines are the most effective way to reduce the risk of COVID-19 on campus.
  • Complete a daily self-assessment before coming to campus and stay home if ill or experiencing symptoms and even if you have received a negative COVID-19 test result.
  • Follow all posted signage on-campus including mask requirements and frequent hand washing.

DECEMBER 30: WINTER SEMESTER UPDATE
Following recent announcements by the provincial government, and in consideration of the Provincial Health Officer’s (PHO) direction to post-secondary institutions, Douglas College will take a more gradual approach to the start of in-person instruction for Winter Semester.

Classes will still begin on Tuesday, January 4; however, this first week will not be in-person for most students. Instead, faculty will advise students about expectations for the week, by program need. This could range from holding a synchronous class online, to assigning reading materials, or Blackboard-based assignments as appropriate. Students will be advised by instructors about individual course expectations by 9am on Tuesday, January 4.

During this period, some courses, including those with clinical or other experiential components will continue in-person, with the appropriate safety protocols in place. Individual instructors will provide further details on specific course requirements in advance of their start date.

Campuses will remain open during this time, including student services, and libraries; however, some in-person services may be reduced. Please check the website for the most up-to-date information about in-person and remote service availability.

Classes are expected to resume in person on January 10. However, Douglas College is remaining flexible and responsive to the ever-evolving pandemic. Please be reassured that we continue to make decisions with the best information available, following the guidance of the PHO, and with the health and safety of our College community as our primary consideration.

We continue to monitor the situation and will update the College community again when new information becomes available.


DECEMBER 22: PROVINCIAL HEALTH OFFICER’S DEC. 21 UPDATE
Further to the Provincial Health Officer’s update to health restrictions on December 21, the College was also provided with some post-secondary specific information with expectations and reminders about the continued safety of post-secondary campuses.

The Provincial Health Officer (PHO) related that from BC’s experience, as well as experience internationally, educational settings continue to be low-risk for COVID-19 transmission and transmission in educational settings on campus continues to be uncommon.

If COVID has taught us anything, it is that the response to COVID is ever evolving. Please be assured that Douglas College continues to follow all guidance from the Provincial Health Officer and will provide updates to the College community when new information is received.

The announcement and update from the PHO comes as the College is on its annual break for the winter holidays and no information was shared that would change the current plans for the College’s return to in-person instruction on January 4.

In the meantime, we can all work together to keep our campuses safe by:

  • Getting vaccinated, if able to do so. Vaccines are the most effective way to reduce the risk of COVID-19 on campus.
  • Completing a daily self-assessment before coming to campus and stay home if you are ill or are experiencing symptoms, no matter how minor and even if you received a negative COVID-19 test result.

  • Following all posted signage on campus including mask requirements and frequent hand washing.

Douglas College has a webpage that is dedicated to posting updates and Frequently Asked Questions. Click here for the link.


AUGUST 11: WALK-IN VACCINATION CLINICS COMING TO NEW WESTMINSTER & COQUITLAM CAMPUSES
In late August and early September, Fraser Health will be holding walk-in COVID-19 vaccination clinics on Tuesdays at the New Westminster Campus and Wednesdays at the Coquitlam Campus. First and second doses are available for those eligible.
New Westminster Campus
Aug. 24, Aug. 31 and Sept. 7
9am–5pm
Room N1200

Coquitlam Campus
Aug. 25, Sept. 1 and Sept. 8
9am-5pm
Room B3051Z

Please bring photo ID and your Personal Health Number. We ask that members of the College community remember not to attend if they are ill, have COVID-19 and/or have been asked to self-isolate.

As the College continues to transition from COVID-19-specific orders and protocols back to normal institutional policies and guidance, as outlined by the Ministry in their Return to Campus Guidelines, we remind the College community that stopping the spread of COVID-19 depends on everyone doing their part, including: immunization, daily self-administered health checks, staying home when sick and practising hand hygiene.


MAY 21: PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE — FALL 2021 UPDATE
Dear students,
As you may have heard, BC’s Provincial Health Officer and the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training have given all post-secondary institutions in BC the direction to plan for a return to campus this Fall. This is exciting news! We are thrilled to be welcoming you back to campus, many for the first time.
Planning for a return to campus is now underway, including course scheduling for how each individual class will be delivered, whether it is in-person, online, or through a hybrid model, with our full academic schedule to be released May 31. Services and resources for students – including the library, food services, advising, counselling and more – will also be available in person once again this Fall, although many online options will continue to be accessible.
I recognize that the idea of returning to in-person activities may leave some people feeling anxious, given how long we have been socially distanced. Summer Semester is also continuing to be online only, as we have not reached the point where we can make a full return.
However, by the Fall, conditions are expected to be very different. Recently, I participated in a virtual town hall meeting with Dr. Bonnie Henry, senior post-secondary leaders, and representatives of local and provincial post-secondary labour unions. Dr. Henry explained that with more and more vaccine doses becoming readily available in BC, COVID-19 numbers are expected to fall dramatically. Vaccination does an excellent job of preventing people from getting very sick and preventing the spread of the disease. In BC, expectations are that all adults, including those in their late teens, will have had the opportunity to have had two vaccinations by the end of the summer. Dr. Henry’s recorded town hall is available online if you would like to learn more.
As we prepare to welcome students back to campus, we will be updating the college website with FAQs and more specific information as it becomes available. Much of this information will be informed by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training’s Go Forward Guidelines, which are currently under development.
Douglas College is such a vibrant campus community that I am excited at the idea of being able to experience it once again. From a global perspective, being able to plan for a return to campus is a privilege for which I am very grateful. Some parts of the world are not so fortunate.
Our hearts go out to our students in countries such as India, Brazil and others where the pandemic is still surging. Many students may also have family members or friends in these areas, causing them additional anxiety. Even here in the relative safety of BC, the stress and anxiety of dealing with the pandemic has taken its toll on our mental health. Please do not forget that we have resources available for support, including personal counselling services and 24/7 metal health supports.
To those of you taking classes in Summer semester, good luck! And to everyone, I’m looking forward to seeing you in September.

Sincerely,
Dr. Kathy Denton
President, Douglas College

If you need to come to campus, please read and review the Douglas College COVID-19 Resources and Information page first – https://www.douglascollege.ca/student-services/student-resources/covid19


On July 23rd, Douglas College released their COVID-19 Safety plan. You can find the full plan here.

The college is updating their webpage on a regular basis, so please check back to get the most up to date information. Their page was last updated January 10, 2022.

Are International students eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine in BC?

Are you an international student, living in BC, and unsure if you are eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine? In short, the answer is yes but check this website for full details!
https://immunizebc.ca/ask-us/questions/covid-19/i-am-not-resident-bc-i-am-bc-right-now-am-i-eligible-get-vaccine

Self-isolation/quarantine plan Protocols for Safe Arrival of International Students

This plan is designed to support international student safe arrival and self-isolation/quarantine in preparation for study at Douglas College while COVID-19 presents a risk to our community. This plan is part of the Douglas College COVID-19 Safety Plan. The COVID-19 pandemic is dynamic and Douglas College officials are monitoring recommendations and Orders declared by the Provincial Health Officer in order to respond with updates to our plans, protocols, and procedures. Douglas College is committed to following all BC Public Health Officer Orders.

The Douglas self-isolation/quarantine plan is broken into four stages; pre-arrival communication, prearrival travel planning; quarantine, and post-quarantine. This plan will be updated regularly by the Douglas College International Office to reflect changes in response to new information, updated procedures, or guidance from the Provincial Health Officer or the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. Comments or suggestions regarding the plan are encouraged and may be sent to Brian Storey, storeyb@douglascollege.ca

https://www.douglascollege.ca/sites/default/files/docs/mco/2020-08-26-Douglas-International-student-self-isolation-plan-.pdf

Douglas College International

We have been advising all international students to reach out directly to Douglas International with their questions. We are also recommending that international students get in touch with their consulates for support at this time – let us know if we can assist you with reaching them.

Douglas International currently has a lot of students emailing them and it will take a bit of time for them to get back to everyone. To potentially help speed up the process, we recommend that you are sending your specific questions to those that can help you best:

For admissions related question, email: DCIadmissions@douglascollege.ca

For academic advising related questions, email: DCIadvising@douglascollege.ca

For immigration advising related questions, email: DCI.immigration@douglascollege.ca

For all other inquiries, email: dci@douglascollege.ca

Government Supports for International Students

The BC Federation of Students have put together some information specifically for International Students.

  • International students who have been working in Canada and are facing layoffs can apply for EI by following the same requirements and process listed under the Income Assistance tab above. This should be done as soon as possible after stoppage of work to minimize time without income.
  • It has also been announced by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that courses being delivered online because of COVID-19 will not affect eligibility for the Post-Graduate Work Permit Program.
  • If you are currently in Canada, but your student visa status is close to expiration, you are encouraged to extend your status online. Until a decision is made on your renewal, you are allowed to stay in the country even if your status has expired. However, you are not to travel to a point of entry to apply directly to a border service officer. That travel is not considered essential.
  • International students who have a study visa for the Spring semester, but have not yet traveled to Canada should check the IRCC website. Travel exemptions for students have been discussed but are not yet implemented. Check this page for more information.
Douglas COVID-19 Emerging and Emergency Needs Fund

The Douglas Students’ Union is pleased to announce our gift of $100,000 to the creation of the Emerging and Emergency Needs fund to support students through the COVID-19 crisis. With contributions from the Ministry of Advanced Education , Douglas College Foundation and Alumni Relations, Douglas College International Departments along with donations from many generous partners and donors, over $600,000 will be made available to support our students in this time of uncertainty and need.

This fund will be accessible for domestic and international students to help cover basic needs for living and unanticipated costs so you can continue with your studies on this unprecedented situation. This financial aid does not require a GPA minimum and is non-repayable so you don’t have to worry about paying back. Students can expect to receive funding within two weeks after approval.

Students who are experiencing unforeseen hardship as a result of the COVID-19 situation can email Douglas College Financial Aid department – financialaid@douglascollege.ca with a request to access the Emerging and Emergency Needs Fund.

Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB)

For post-secondary students and recent graduates who are ineligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit or for Employment Insurance, but who are unable to find full-time employment or are unable to work due to COVID-19, the government proposes to introduce the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB). The CESB would provide $1,250 per month for eligible students from May through August 2020, and $1,750 for students with dependents and those with permanent disabilities. The CESB will be disbursed by the CRA, so please make sure you create an account through them. Apply today at https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/emergency-student-benefit/cesb-how-apply.html 

Canada Emergency Response Benefit (cerb)

The Federal Government will provide a taxable benefit for $2,000 a month for up to 4 months to:

  • Workers who had to stop working due to COVID-19 and no don’t have access to paid leave or other income supports;
  • Workers who are sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone sick with COVID-19;
  • Working parents who now must stay home because of school and daycare closures;
  • Workers who are still employed, but facing shortages of work or reduced hours who do not otherwise qualify for EI;
  • Wage earners and self-employed individuals, including contract workers, who would not otherwise be eligible for EI;
  • and more. To see see all eligibility for CERB, please visit canada.ca.

This new program applies to all these individuals, whether they qualify for EI or not. This program will be managed through the Canadian Revenue Agency, which is expected to provide a more streamlined application process.

Applications for CERB began today, April 6th. To not overload the website and application process, the government has asked applicants to apply on the day that matches their birth month. Those born in January through March are asked to apply on April 6, the first day the web portal opens. People born in April through June are to apply April 7, those born in July through September on April 8, and Canadians with birth months October through December can sign up on April 9.

There are two different ways you can apply for CERB; online with CRA My Account or over the phone with an automated phone service.

Apply online here.

Employment Insurance (EI) Sickness Benefit

The Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefit provides up to 15 weeks of income replacement and is available to eligible claimants who are unable to work because of illness, injury, or quarantine, to allow them time to restore their health and return to work. Canadians quarantined can apply for the Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefit.

Please note, EI has waived the one-week wait period as well as the medical note in order to apply. More information can be found here.

If you require the one week wait period to be waved, or would like any more information on the EI Sickness Benefit you may contact them via phone.

Telephone: 1-833-381-2725 (toll-free)
Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-800-529-3742

Employment Insurance

Employment Insurance (EI) provides regular benefits to individuals who lose their jobs through no fault of their own (for example, due to shortage of work, seasonal or mass lay-offs) and are available for and able to work, but can’t find a job.

You may be entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) regular benefits if you:

  • were employed in insurable employment;
  • lost your job through no fault of your own;
  • have been without work and without pay for at least seven consecutive days in the last 52 weeks;
  • have worked for the required number of insurable employment hours in the last 52 weeks or since the start of your last EI claim, whichever is shorter;
  • are ready, willing and capable of working each day;
  • are actively looking for work (you must keep a written record of employers you contact, including when you contacted them).
CAN you apply for BOTH the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and employment insurance?

If you are already receiving EI regular and sickness benefits, you can continue to do so and not apply for CERB.

If your EI benefits end before Oct 3, 2020, you can apply for CERB. If you are on CERB and are still unemployed after 4 months, you can receive EI, if eligible.

If you have already applied for EI and are waiting to be processed, you do not need to re-apply.

(source: https://www.wegotchu.ca/incomejobs)

BC Emergency Benefit for Workers

The BC Government has announced an emergency benefit for workers. This Benefit will be a one-time tax-free payment for British Columbians who receive Employment Insurance or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit. This includes workers who have been laid-off, who are sick or quarantined, parents with sick children, parents who stay at home from work while child care centres and schools are closed, and those caring for sick family members, such as an elderly parent. Workers who are traditionally not eligible for EI, such as those who are self-employed, are also eligible for this Benefit.

More information about the BC Emergency Benefit for Workers can be found here.

CANADA CHILD BENEFIT INCREASE

The government is providing a one-time boost to the Canada Child Benefit of $300 per child in May. No action is needed if you are already registered for the CCB. If you are not currently registered, please apply.

New online tool to help Canadians find financial help during COVID-19

The Federal Government has launched a new online tool to help Canadians find financial help during COVID-19 and point you to the program details you are inquiring about and that you could qualify for.

CANADA RECOVERY CAREGIVING BENEFIT (CRCB)

The CRCB provides $500 per week ($450 after taxes withheld) for up to 26 weeks per household for workers:

  • Unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they much care for a child under the age of 12 or family member because schools, day-cares or care facilities are closed due to COVID-19.
  • Because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine or is at high risk of serious health implications because of COVID-19

Eligible applicant can now apply here.

 

Douglas College Wellness activities

Currently, all Douglas College Student Life Wellness Events are postponed or happening virtually. In the meantime, you may be looking for ways to take care of yourself during this time and online activities that you can participate in to support your health as a Douglas student. All resources and activities on the page are free!

https://www.douglascollege.ca/student-life/get-healthy/wellness-events


British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) 
World Health Organization (WHO) 
COVID-19 BC Support App and Self-Assessment Tool
Non-medical COVID-19 Information
  • including social distancing & travel recommendation
  • 1-888-268-4319 or text 604-630-0300
  • 7:30am-8pm, 7 days a week

811 Hotline

Call 811 to find health information and services; or connect you directly with a registered nurse, a registered dietitian, a qualified exercise professional, or a pharmacist.


WAVAW

WAVAW is a feminist, anti-oppressive, decolonizing rape crisis centre operating on unceded Coast Salish Territories. They provide support services to survivors of sexualized violence who have shared experiences of gender marginalization: cis and trans women, Two-Spirit, trans and/or non-binary people. They advocate for social and systemic change through education, outreach and activism.

24 hour Crisis & Info Hotline – 604-255-6344

Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS)

While people are encouraged to stay at home, you may feel isolated from your friends and family. Even if you are isolated, try to maintain social connections online or over the phone, if it is safe to do so, and try to stick to your daily routines as much as possible.

Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS) Crisis line remains open, providing emotional support to women experiencing gender-based domestic violence and/or uncertainty during these difficult times. This may be a time an abusive ex is calling you and trying to convince you to return and may be making you feel vulnerable and using harassment and COVID-19 to make you come back.

Call or text 604-652-1867 or send an email at intake@bwss.org

This is a time of uncertainty, anxiety and stress. The BC Federation of Students have put together some great resources for any needing some mental health support during this time. Here are some services that could help you out if you’re are struggling:

Here2Talk

Here2Talk is a new app created by the BC Government that connects students with mental health support when they need it. Through this program, all students currently registered in a B.C. post-secondary institution have access to free, confidential counselling and community referral services, conveniently available 24/7 via app, phone and web.

BC MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT LINE
  • Call 310-Mental Health (310-6789) – no area code needed
  • 24hrs/day, 7 days a week
FOUNDRY BC
MENTAL HEALTH DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC WEBPAGE FROM CAMH

Federal Government – www.canada.ca
Government of Canada Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Outbreak Update

New online tool to help Canadians find financial help during COVID-19
The Federal Government has launched a new online tool to help Canadians find financial help during COVID-19 and point you to the program details you are inquiring about and that you could qualify for.

The Federal Government has recommended that everyone create an account on CRA website (https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency.html) Select direct deposit to get your money quicker when the funds start to be disburse.

Provincial Government
Government of British Columbia – COVID-19 Provincial Support and Information

 

Food banks 

If at this time you are in need of food support, there are local food banks available. The Douglas Students’ Union offers a food bank. To access the DSU Food bank, please contact – info@thedsu.ca. There are also local food banks available.

Rent banks 

Rent banks are a homelessness prevention tool that is focused on providing housing stability for low- to moderate-income renters. Rent banks provide financial assistance in the form of repayable loans, to households at risk of eviction for reasons such as non-payment of rent or utilities.

Tri-Cities Rent Bank
The Tri-Cities SHARE Rent Bank program makes loans available to Tri-Cities residents who have short term financial issues that are putting their tenancy in jeopardy. The Rent Bank program works to provide interest free loans to market renters, to help them maintain their tenancy through help with their rent payment, or a hydro/natural gas payment or security deposit. Loans are to be repaid over 18-24 months.

BC Housing/RENT ASSISTANCE

To support people and prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Province is introducing a new temporary rental supplement package.  The Renter Supplement Package includes:

  • halting new and active evictions, except for exceptional circumstances, so no one is evicted because of COVID-19
  • providing $500 per month for four months to help renters make rent payments; this supplement will get paid directly to landlords after the renter applies.
  • Freezing annual rent increases as of April 1

BC-Temporary Rental Supplement (BC-TRS) Program application is now open and is available for domestic and international students. Apply online here.

ICBC insurance deferrals

Customers on a monthly Autoplan payment plan, who are facing financial challenges due to COVID-19, can defer their insurance payments for up to 90 days with no penalty.

BC Hydro

BC Hydro is offering targeted bill relief to residential customers who have lost their jobs or are unable to work as a result of COVID-19. Customers will receive a credit to help cover the cost of their electricity bills; the credit will be three times their average monthly bill over the past year at their home and does not have to be repaid. The average residential customer’s bill is $159 per month, so BC Hydro claims the average credit provided will be $477. Learn more about the COVID-19 Relief Fund here.

Additionally, some customers may be eligible for BC Hydro’s existing Customer Crisis Fund, which provides access to grants of up to $600 to pay their bills. Learn more about the Customer Crisis Fund here.

Canada Student Loans 

The Federal government has put a moratorium on student loan payments. Beginning March 30, 2020 the Government of Canada has paused the repayment of Canada Student Loans until September 30, 2020, with no accrual of interest.

BC Student Loans 

The Provincial government announced B.C. student loan payments will be frozen for six months until September 30, 2020.

U-PASS BC upassbc@douglascollege.ca

Post-secondary institutions and student associations (Douglas Students’ Union included) have worked with TransLink to temporarily suspend the U-Pass BC program as of May 1, 2020. By now, the UPASS fee should be removed from your tuition.

The U-Pass BC program is offered to students under agreements in place between TransLink, participating colleges and universities, and their associated student societies. Students pay for this pass through mandatory student fees. If you have already paid for the summer semester, please make sure your address is up to date with your Douglas account, and you will be issued a refund through the College.

TransLink is continuing discussions with post-secondary schools and student association representatives about potential refunds for students not using their April passes. Students not needing their April U-Pass are encouraged not to use it and to check their school, student association, or our U-Pass BC website for further updates.

The Douglas Students’ Union is continuing to work with Douglas College and TransLink on how the refund will happen and will share those details when we have that information. Stay tuned and thank you for your patience!

APRIL UPASS UPDATE! –
Students who paid for and did not use their April U-Pass, or used it minimally, can expect a refund, or partial refund, of those fees. The College is working on issuing those refunds, so please make sure your address and accounts are up-to-date!

We gotchu 

wegotchu.ca is a website created by Simon Fraser University. The website contains a lot of helpful information for students in regards to the ongoing pandemic.

BC Federation of Students

The BC Federation of Students have put together a webpage with resources for students. We have taken some information from them and have added it to our page here, but for more information please visit their website.