Trinity Western University’s campus. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance)

Trinity Western University’s campus. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance)

Langley universities tackle health, stereotypes as coronavirus fear spreads

TWU has cut travel to China until at least the end of the month

Langley’s Trinity Western University has cancelled travel to China for the duration of the coronavirus outbreak centered in Wuhan, Hubei province.

“TWU is temporarily suspending all university-related travel to China until the end of February,” says a statement on the university’s website. “We will reassess as new information becomes available.”

The university’s Langley and Richmond campuses are open, and there are no presumptive cases of the virus on campus.

In fact, there has only been one confirmed case of the coronavirus in B.C., and another three in Ontario, all among people who had travelled to the city of Wuhan recently.

The coronavirus is thought to have jumped to humans from bats via a fish and game market in the city of Wuhan.

Everything on the campuses is running as normal, but the university website advises those who have been travelling abroad and become sick to stay home and tell their doctor or other health care provider about their symptoms.

“You should also tell your provider if you had close contact with a sick person or had another high-risk exposure such as direct contact with animals,” says the university statement.

TWU is the only university with students living on-campus in Langley.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University, the other major post-secondary school with a campus in Langley, is also operating business as usual.

“At this time, KPU is only asking students and employees to stay home if they are displaying flu-like symptoms,” says a statement from the university. “Employees who are fit to work are expected to report to work as usual.”

The KPU provost is leading a team to ensure the school responds as the situation evolves, the statement says.

The FAQ about the virus also addresses possible racial stereotyping due to fear about the virus.

“KPU is asking the university community to learn the facts about the virus from reputable sources such as the BC Centre for Disease Control, Health Canada or the World Health Organization and remain vigilant about the risks of embracing stereotypes at a time of heightened concern,” it says.

CoronavirusKwantlen Polytechnic UniversityTrinity Western University

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