Notre Dame cleaning staff take on new responsibilities to keep campus sanitized, maintain vacated quarantine rooms

first_imgAlysa Guffey | The Observer A HERE sign in a residence hall instructs residents to disinfect the surfaces they touched before leaving the restroom.Chris Hatfield, senior director of Building Services, said the biggest challenges due to the coronavirus have been obtaining necessary supplies and coordinating tight schedules to make sure cleaning policies are implemented. He also acknowledged the problematic nature of cleaning quarantine and isolation rooms or dorms of infected students.The protective equipment not only guards against coronavirus, but shields the team from harsh cleaning chemicals. As of Sunday, 14 coronavirus cases have been reported among employees.Building Services staff are already trained in universal precautions to prevent the spread of infection, Hatfield said in an email, so they simply took a few extra precautions, such as masks and physical distancing.Each member of the team is given an assigned building and schedule from Building Services. Since class times and schedules change every day, Shultz and her co-workers juggle a complicated schedule to ensure every room gets disinfected between class periods. In addition, the electrostatic gun and all the protective equipment make cleaning a very tedious process, she said.“I feel like I’m moving in slow motion,” Shultz said.Besides a few new challenges, Shultz said she thinks the University has treated her fairly. Shultz was placed in a residence hall to provide extra disinfecting measures, but a few of her coworkers were assigned to clean isolation and quarantine rooms.Shultz noted that a few of the team members assigned to clean the isolation and quarantine rooms, especially those who were older or higher risk, were more worried about safety. They didn’t feel that the University was providing proper transparency for some important details, such as how long the room had been unoccupied.Hubbard echoed this statement, describing how she’s thankful she wasn’t assigned to clean the quarantine or isolation rooms, especially since her rheumatoid arthritis puts her at a higher risk. Hubbard said the cleaning staff who were assigned to clean these rooms were very displeased.“All employees have been repeatedly told by the University to make us aware of any health concerns they may have, and that has been especially true for the cleaning staff,” Brown said. “We can’t assist if employees don’t bring their concerns to us.”Nonetheless, the workers weren’t happy to be assigned to these rooms, Hubbard said“I would’ve been scared too,” she said. “At least give them a twenty-four hour notice. Let the kids move out. Don’t rush [cleaning staff] in there.”Hubbard also mentioned how these cleaning workers were often not asked about health conditions before receiving assignments to clean the rooms.According to Hatfield, waiting periods are factored into cleaning schedules for quarantine, isolation and vacated residence hall rooms. Despite this, not everyone on the cleaning staff thought the University was providing proper transparency about how long the room had been unoccupied.Brown responded regarding transparency.“We have worked with students in an effort to ensure that all rooms in both residence halls and Q&I facilities have been unoccupied for a minimum of four hours — and usually more — before cleaning personnel begin their work,” he said. “The safety of staff, students, faculty and visitors has been and always will be our top priority. The University has encouraged everyone on campus to speak up if they have a concern, and that is true now more than ever.”Even with added responsibilities, relatively low wages and a risky work environment, some cleaning staff take great pride in their work. According to a recent article on NDWorks, Larry Parker, a shift leader, is committed to keeping students safe and healthy.“I hate that COVID is getting to our students. I hate it,” Parker said in the article. “I take pride in what my crew and I do because now we are saving lives. You look at a doctor or a nurse or a firefighter or police, now we are saving lives too.”For students who want to thank the hard-working cleaning staff, Hatfield recommends a few simple measures.“Following the rules regarding distancing, mask wearing and hand washing is being respectful of the custodians and other University staff,” Hatfield said. “Keeping your living and working areas neat and clean is also appreciated and allows more time for disinfection activity.”Hatfield added that “taking the time to smile and express appreciation to the custodians for their work is always appreciated by the staff.”Tags: at-risk populations, coronavirus, custodial staff, Here, Isolation, University staff, Work environment Cleaning the 150 buildings and more than 10 million gross square feet that make up Notre Dame’s academic and administrative buildings, residence halls and athletic buildings is a daunting task for the University’s staff, but this year, new coronavirus challenges have placed an even greater strain on these frontline workers.Despite increased work hazards and sanitizing responsibilities, the 375-person cleaning staff still work for relatively low wages, the employees say.Heather Shultz, a member of the disinfecting team created this year as part of the HERE campaign, sprays down classrooms between every class period. Previously, Shultz was an event coordinator for the University, but due to a lack of events and increased need for sanitary measures, she was offered a job on the cleaning staff instead. Taking the job meant taking a pay cut of $4.“I was shocked how little the cleaning staff got paid,” Shultz said. “Even in a normal year, they’re doing the dirty work, cleaning the toilets and taking out the trash.”The University is adding some benefits for its cleaning staff due to this year’s circumstances. First, cleaning staff are guaranteed payment if they are sent into quarantine or isolation. Building Services has also lengthened the new hire orientation to ensure proper safety and expanded child and elder care benefits for employees.“All employees, regardless of task, are receiving their normal pay,” University spokesperson Dennis Brown said in an email. “But for cleaning staff who are working in residence halls and other facilities, we have consulted with experts in the field and provided them with specialized training, PPE, other equipment and supplies to make their work environment safe.”Shultz and her fellow members of the disinfecting team suit up with gloves, goggles and face shields to sanitize classrooms and common rooms with an electrostatic gun that gives potentially infectious droplets an electric charge.Angela Hubbard, another member of the cleaning team, has worked at the University for the past 30 years. This year, she’s responsible for cleaning door handles and refilling hand sanitizer stations on the first floors of DeBartolo Hall, Duncan Student Center and the Snite Museum of Art.“I love doing it,” Hubbard said. “I would not be here thirty years if I didn’t.”Aside from a few extra cleaning tasks, Hubbard said her responsibilities and hours haven’t shifted drastically, and she feels safe given the protective equipment the University provides.last_img read more

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Erick Smith specializes in blueberries

first_imgBlueberry expert Erick Smith was recently hired by the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences as a fruit specialist for southern Georgia on the Tifton Campus. In his new position, he’ll spend 80 percent of his time working with fruit farmers on critical issues affecting the industry and blueberry production. He’ll spend the other 20 percent of his time researching ways to make fruit production more efficient in south Georgia. “This is a very important hire for the Georgia fruit industries, especially the blueberry industry,” said Douglas Bailey, a professor and head of the UGA Department of the Horticulture in Athens. “The retirement of Dr. (Gerard) Krewer a few years ago has left a large void in support for our fruit growers. We are very excited to have been able to attract someone of such high caliber as Dr. Smith.” According to the UGA Center for Agribusiness Farm Gate Value Report, blueberries were the highest selling fruit in Georgia in 2011. They were grown on more than 21,000 acres and raked in a farm gate value of $254 million. “Over the last 20 years, blueberry research has explored the fruit’s nutritional benefits,” Smith said. Blueberries have significant levels of antioxidants (anti-cancer metabolites). “The public has responded positively, as seen by the demand in Georgia and worldwide,” he said. Competition has the industry looking for efficiencies in production that would reduce input costs, he said. Growers have specifically expressed to Smith a need for help identifying pests, diseases and cultural management. “Right now, as I understand it from my conversations with people in the blueberry industry, many farmers worry about market saturation, which can lower returns to the farm,” Smith said. “This allows for many opportunities to develop a program focused on plant health, production efficiencies and fruit quality. I see, going forward, very exciting challenges.” With $108 million and 7,875 acres, Bacon County sold more blueberries in 2011 than any county in Georgia. Smith was a research associate at Washington State University prior to moving to Georgia. His appointment at UGA takes affect April 1.last_img read more

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Good neighbor, great office

first_imgWhen the local transit authority began looking at allU.S. Credit Union’s current headquarters as the site for a new station, the CU went shopping for its next location. The $37 million credit union serving 3,700 members found a nice spot in the heart of Salinas, Calif.-and an opportunity to be a great neighbor.By prepaying its 40-year lease on the city-owned lot, allU.S. Credit Union effectively fronted the local library (the CU’s new neighbor) $1.4 million for a much-needed expansion. “We have plenty of equity, so why not use it for a good purpose?” says CEO Patrick Redo, a CUES member.The arrangement afforded the credit union “great PR,” Redo says, as well as a prime location in the heart of the retail district and the opportunity to introduce a new model of “dialogue banking.”The CU’s current office is located next to a Laundromat, which draws 50 to 60 people a day in foot traffic. In contrast, the library serves up to 1,000 people daily, and the new allU.S. CU office will offer its meeting room for community use, which will further increase exposure for the CU, which recently expanded its membership. The credit union also plans to offer financial education for local residents in partnership with its new neighbor, especially for the largely unbanked immigrants who live and work in the area. continue reading » 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Brothel zones get nod from council

first_imgChristchurch Press 23 March 2012Plans to restrict locations for major Christchurch brothels are a step closer to reality after city councillors decided to push ahead with the proposal. At their meeting yesterday, councillors voted to start developing a bylaw restricting where brothels can operate in the city. Councillors voted in September to look into the issue after concerns about brothels spreading across the city following the February 2011 earthquake. A report by council staff said the impact of the quake on central-city brothels had increased the importance of restrictions, given the risk that some would set up in suburban areas. The report recommended allowing brothels to set up in the central-city core, its fringe and parts of the mixed-use zones, as well as specific commercial business zones across Christchurch, and a section of Lyttelton’s town centre. Brothels would be banned from the rest of the city, with the exception of small owner-operated brothels and existing brothels.http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/6623209/Brothel-zones-get-nod-from-councillast_img read more

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Protect Marriage When You Vote

first_img                                 Authorised by Family First NZ, 652 Great South Rd, Manukau City 2241 In 2013, the politicians IGNORED thousands of your submissions. They IGNORED calls for a referendum on a massive cultural change, at the same time as demanding a referendum on state asset sales! They demanded their right for a conscience vote, yet voted to IGNORE the consciences of many celebrants, registrars, churches hosting weddings, and others in the wedding industry. And they IGNORED the growing opposition to the definition of marriage being changed.Politicians chose to IGNORE the obvious cultural and natural characteristics of marriage and the subsequent creation and care of children, and made marriage just about partnership. Despite their grandiose view, the politicians never had the authority to redefine marriage – and their efforts only mask reality.BUT THEY CAN’T IGNORE YOU AT THE BALLOT BOX.Many of you – in fact, more than 18,000 New Zealanders – signed a Pledge declaring their personal convictions on this issue. And more than 70,000 signed a petition which we presented to the politicians.You can read the background on the Pledge HEREYou can see the voting record HERE (or click on the poster below).Find out where the political party leaders stand on marriage, and on redefining marriage even further. CLICK HERE (questions 1/2/3) Some parties are ‘undecided’ on group marriage! And can we believe some parties who are currently opposed when they were originally opposed to same-sex marriage also?The moral values of any politician will determine the morality of our nation’s laws. You and I have a duty to protect the morality of our nation.It’s never to late to protect marriage. We haven’t given up on marriage – we hope you haven’t either!                                    click on image to download posterlast_img read more

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Iniesta hints at bitterness over Barcelona split

first_img In a documentary on his career, he declared ‘in relationships, if you don’t speak about things, a moment arrives when there’s no going back’. Asked about the phrase, Iniesta told Sport: “I think it’s clear, don’t you?Advertisement Loading… Vissel Kobe midfielder, Andres Iniesta, has hinted at some bitterness over his departure from Barcelona. Promoted Content5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme Parks9 Facts You Should Know Before Getting A TattooThe Highest Paid Football Players In The World10 Phones That Can Easily Fit In The Smallest Pocket8 Fascinating Facts About Coffee7 Universities Where Getting An Education Costs A Hefty PennyTarantino Wants To End His Career With This Movie?2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This Year8 Ways Drones Will Automate Our FutureThe Highest Paid Football Players In The WorldWhy Do So Many Digital Assistants Have Feminine Names & Voices?This Guy Photoshopped Himself Into Celeb Pics And It’s Hysterical “In the context of my exit from Barça, I think the phrase is very explicit, very real. It’s usually said that you give value to things when you’ve lost them. The important thing is to give value to things when you have them, and that that is reciprocated. But these things happen, and they are done for various reasons. read also:Iniesta sorcery sparks Japan’s Kobe to 5-1 Asian win “In my heart, I missed certain things, and that phrase that we spoke about says a lot. Regardless of that, the decision that I took was the one I felt I had to take.” FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 last_img read more

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Allardyce has say on Diame exit

first_imgMohamed Diame was allowed to leave West Ham for Hull after failing to build on his impressive opening season, Hammers’ boss Sam Allardyce has revealed. Press Association The 27-year-old central midfielder was an instant hit with the fans at Upton Park having completed a free transfer from Wigan and was soon attracting reported attention from the likes of Arsenal. West Ham kept hold of the player but, with his contract running down, Allardyce decided the time was right to sell – will Monday’s opponents Hull signing him on transfer deadline day. In a parting shot at the club, Diame hit out at Allardyce for ‘shunting’ him around the team and putting off prospective suitors. “At West Ham I was shunted around all the different positions,” he told the Daily Star earlier in the week. “I remember one time I had to play as a striker. At least with Hull I will be certain of playing in my favoured role. That was not good for my career. I wanted to play for a club that is high in the Premier League table. “At least with Hull I will be certain of playing in my favoured role. I should have left West Ham a long time ago, as with them I wasn’t permitted to play in central midfield. “I wasn’t able to get the biggest clubs interested in me, as when they came to watch me I’d been put in a position that was not mine.” But now both Allardyce and co-chairman David Gold have had their say on the situation, with the latter taking to Twitter to put his view across. “Mohamed Diame said it was always his aim to play for a team higher up the league table,” Gold wrote. “Good luck at Hull Mohamed.” Allardyce went deeper into the reasoning behind his willingness to allow Diame’s departure – and confirmed a last-minute deal was struck with Marseille winger Morgan Amalfitano to fill the vacant space in his squad. “Mo was running out of contract and there was a fantastic offer from Hull City which meant that, with Mo coming to us on a free transfer, we made a very handsome profit on that deal,” he said. “He had two seasons with us. I think that his first season was something we expected him to improve on. “He didn’t quite go as fas as we expected from thereon unfortunately. So it was good business all round from our point of view because it allowed us to get Morgan in and Mo got what he wanted in the end and that was a move and obviously a bigger contract. “Mo would have continued to play in central midfield had his performances been as his first season with us. In the end, those performances didn’t quite live up to the ones he gave us in the early part of his career here. “My responsibility is the team and the whole team, not one particular player. If there’s a particular position you need to play somebody to find if they can play that little bit better than they did, then you try and do that. That’s why I moved Mo around. “If he wasn’t happy with it and he’s moved on then that’s fine. From my point of view, I have to look after 25 players throughout the season and then select the best team available. Within that, a player picks himself. That’s what a player does. And a player drops himself. It’s not me, they do it themselves by calculating and keeping track of their performances. “When their performances don’t meet the level you expect then their position is in jeopardy. And if their performances do meet expectations then they stay in the team.” One man who does not appear set to leave Upton Park is assistant manager Neil McDonald. The 48-year-old was linked to the vacant manager’s position at Sky Bet League Two strugglers Carlisle, but Allardyce quashed the speculation and said he intends to keep working closely with McDonald. “No we are not going to lose him,” he said. “I think we have had a huge amount of changes and when you have got somebody you trust and is your right hand man over many years, you don’t let that go.” last_img read more

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Liverpool boys soccer stuns F-M; C-NS girls advance

first_imgShare this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story On Oct. 10, when the Liverpool boys soccer team dropped a 4-1 decision to Baldwinsville, it fell to 3-10 on the season.If anyone, at that point, would go up to the Warriors and tell them that, exactly two weeks later, it would take down the state’s no. 6-ranked team in the Section III Class AA playoffs, players, coaches and fans alike might find that hard to believe.Yet that’s how things played out, Liverpool winning its last three regular-season games to rush into the post-season, and then, on Thursday night, shocking Fayetteville-Manlius in the sectional AA quarterfinals, playing the Hornets to a 0-0 draw through regulation and overtime and then prevailing in penalty kicks. Liverpool didn’t restrict itself to the defensive end, taking 10 shots of its own, though none of them found the net. And when OT ended 0-0, it went to penalty kicks, each side getting five opportunities at the net.They were still tied through five rounds, and then a sixth round. Finally, in the seventh round, the Warriors converted, and F-M’s Corey Gallagher beat Schaeber, but the shot caromed off the crossbar.Suddenly, Liverpool finds itself in the sectional Class AA semifinals, where it will face no. 6 seed Henninger Wednesday night at Jamesville-DeWitt. The Warriors beat the Black Knights 2-1 in its late-season surge after losing to them by that same margin in September.The winner of that game faces Baldwinsville or West Genesee in the Nov. 4 sectional final. It was the no. 4 seed Wildcats that ended the season for Cicero-North Syracuse Thursday night in yet another 1-0 decision at Mike Messere Field.Justin Klasczko’s first-half goal held up for WG as its defense shut out the Northstars for the second time in as many weeks. C-NS closed its season with a 7-9-1 record.Moving to the girls soccer sectional Class AA playoffs, Cicero-North Syracuse entered as the no. 4 seed, knowing that, if it defeated no. 5 seed Auburn in Saturday’s opening round at Bragman Stadium, it would have a shot at top seed and defending champion F-M in the semifinal round.The afternoon belonged to Northstars sophomore forward Maddie Jackson. Twice in the first half, Jackson put in goals, with assists credited to two other sophomores, Victoria Iannotti and Ashey Evans.That’s all C-NS needed as it blanked the Maroons in the second half and prevailed 2-0, the Northstars’ defense limiting Auburn to just three shots, all grabbed by Avery Byrnes.So it’s the Northstars trying to avenge two regular-season defeats to F-M in Wednesday night’s semifinal at Central Square. The winner there gets Baldwinsville or West Genesee in next Saturday’s AA title game at LHS Stadium. Tags: C-NSliverpoolsoccer The two times the Warriors met F-M this season, it lost. Yet the second game, at home on the Field Turf at LHS Stadium Oct. 3, was a 2-0 decision, far closer than the 5-1 loss it took on the grass at Swan Pond in September.And this playoff game would take place on Field Turf, too, with F-M not playing at Swan Pond. That played to the Warriors’ advantage, since it was more familiar with games on an artificial surface.Throughout the 80 minutes of regulation and 30 minutes of overtime, Liverpool’s defense continually frustrated F-M’s potent group of forwards, containing the league’s top scorer, Cheech Pagano, and anytime the Hornets did get a shot, Dan Schaeber grabbed it, eventually getting 12 saves.last_img read more

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NCAA drug policy explained by officials

first_imgFrom what Donte Davis remembers about being drug tested by Syracuse University’s athletic department, there was little wiggle room to get around the rules. ‘It’d be real early in the morning. They don’t want you to be able to do nothing like get rid of any drugs or anything like that, so they’ll test you real early,’ said Davis, a former football player. ‘They make you pull your pants down. They watch you pee into a cup. It’s like no cheating the system.’ But according to a Yahoo! Sports article released yesterday, four sources with knowledge of SU basketball teams alleged at least 10 players in the last decade cheated the system and avoided punishment outlined by the athletics’ drug policy. There is a drug policy in place within the department today, but the policy is not made available to the public. Whether the information is made public is completely determined by the institution, said Andrea Wickerham, vice president of Free Drug Sport, which oversees the NCAA drug testing program. She also said it does not matter whether the university is public or private.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text ‘I know some of our clients put their institutional testing program on their athletic department website,’ Wickerham said. ‘And I’m familiar with some institutions that aren’t our clients that put it out there for access for their student athletes, for their coaches, for the public. To me it’s not something that they should be concerned about. It’s just a written document.’ When asked why the policy is not made public, Sue Edson, assistant director of athletics for communications, cited privacy as a reason. ‘Because it’s something we choose to keep private because it impacts student athletes, and it’s not something that we deem necessary to be public information because we believe its private information,’ Edson said. Though the athletic department could not go into detail regarding the policy, former athletes gave some insight regarding what they experienced during their time at Syracuse. At the start of the school year, all athletes attend an orientation that explains what the athletes must do to stay eligible throughout the season. This ranges from many topics, including avoiding drugs to stay in compliance with department and NCAA policy. ‘The meeting is basically of eligibility outside of academics,’ former football player Da’Mon Merkerson said. ‘All the things that can get you in trouble.’ Wickerham said what the NCAA tests for and what individual institutions test for are usually different. The NCAA has a stronger emphasis on steroids, for which Drug Free Sport administers tests automatically at Division-I football programs, Wickerham said. The focus of college drug testing is more stringent regarding street drugs, which include marijuana, cocaine, amphetamine, methamphetamines, certain prescription drugs and opium, Wickerham said. ‘Individual institutions and I’m guessing Syracuse would be similar. It tends to focus most of their testing on street drugs, but probably does some anabolic steroids testing, and that could be for a variety of reasons,’ she said. As for punishment, Merkerson, who never failed a drug test during his time at Syracuse, said he doesn’t have firsthand experience with what the consequences are. But from what he understood, the athletic department has its own punishment. Then, depending on the coach of a certain sport, he or she can level a more sincere punishment. Merkerson said every team received equal treatment. Wickerham said that the NCAA does not dictate to schools what its individual sanctions should be if an athlete fails a drug test, but a school can face consequences if it does not enforce the sanctions it sets. Don Siegel, the chair of the University Senate Committee on Athletic Policy at SU, said from what he has seen of the drug policy, the athletic department goes to great measures to ensure the policy is adhered to. Siegel added that the department self-reports if it does not follow procedure. Siegel said his position, along with others on the committee, is an advisory board for the department. He said he couldn’t remember the last time the committee and the athletic department talked about the drug policy. Still, speaking generally, he thinks the drug policy is fine. ‘From our understanding, the athletic department has always done it’s best to adhere to NCAA policy and then go beyond that sometimes,’ Siegel said. ‘To ensure that our program is as compliant as possible to the benefit of the student and that athletic program.’ dgproppe@syr.edu  Comments Published on March 6, 2012 at 12:00 pmcenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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’SC leads in international students

first_imgUSC leads the nation in international student enrollment for the 11th year in a row, according to a report released Monday.The report was released by the Institute of International Education and supported by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the Department of State. In the 2011-12 school year, USC enrolled 9,269 international students with a record enrollment of 2,515 Chinese students representing the largest group. The second-largest group of international students were from India, with 1,265 enrolled. In fall 2011, about 71 percent of international students were participating in graduate programs.President C. L. Max Nikias said in a statement released Monday that USC’s large international student population enhances the educations of all students on campus.“USC is so proud of its exceptional international students, as well as its ability to continually draw such talented students from all over the world,” Nikias said in a statement. “These students arrive on our campuses with a broad range of experiences and perspectives, as well as tremendous intellect and creativity. They benefit enormously from their time at USC, while our domestic students learn about cultures outside their own. The bonds our students form — and the professional connections they establish — remain with them for life.”Associate Dean of Student Affairs Tony Tambascia said USC’s concerted efforts to attract international students will encourage them to attend the university.“At USC, international students from over 115 different countries participate fully in both the academic and co-curricular aspects of campus life,” Tambascia said in a statement. “The university’s leadership is dedicated to helping international students have a great Trojan experience, and I think this is part of why so many students from around the world enroll each year.The report also found that USC ranked sixth for the total number of students pursuing study abroad programs, with 2,340 students participating in these programs in the 2010-11 school year.The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and New York University ranked second and third place, respectively, for number of international students, according to the report.last_img read more

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