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University Hall accommodation advice during lockdown due to COVID

Rawiri Piahana made this Official Information request to Victoria University of Wellington

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From: Rawiri Piahana

Dear Victoria University of Wellington,

I am requesting information around the University halls being shut and students impacted from halls during lockdown this year.

Did the University receive legal advice around sending the initial email to students - from accommodation services - "Subject: Communication to all hall students COVID-19 - returning home" on the 23rd of March this year.

If the University received legal advice, are you able to provide a copy of the advice?

Did the University receive legal advice when the decision was made and an email was sent around the 24th of April to start charging for accommodation even though students who were not in their halls would not be able to return because of the lockdown level?

If the University received legal advice, are you able to provide a copy of the advice?

Am I able to get all correspondence related to the making of this decision, including who heads the department or division ultimately?

Am I able to all get correspondence related to the change in direction and the overturning of this decision to charge a fee to students who would not be able to return?
- A lot of public pressure was put on the University and I am interested in understanding what was going through the minds of senior staff, because the Vice-chancellor appeared to be clear that this would happen?

The University has stated how much the lockdown would cause a loss in accommodation and that this should not be subsidised by academic funds.
Now that we are approaching the end of the year, can you tell me how much the University has had to cover/pay because students were not in their halls and thus were not required to pay their fees over lockdown?
- I would not expect this to include any costs for advertising to fill empty beds, grants that covered accommodation fees, wages for staff positions that have not existed previously, depreciation and such.
- I would expect this loss calculation to include savings due to lower catering costs, power costs, staff departing and not being paid, cleaning cost savings (if they were not paid) and such.

Has the University received or used any grants to cover accommodation costs for students while they were not in halls?

The lockdown was an unprecedented situation for New Zealand and Universities have made calls and decisions that call into question whose best interests they are acting in.
I am requesting this information because historically it is very important and there needs to be an understanding of what and why this happened.

Yours faithfully,

Rawiri Piahana

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From: OIA Requests
Victoria University of Wellington


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Tçnâ koe Rawiri

 

Official information request for University Hall accommodation advice
during lockdown due to COVID

 

I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your official information request
dated 25 November 2020.

 

We received your request on 25 November. We will endeavour to respond to
your request as soon as possible and in any event no later than 23
December 2020, being 20 working days after the day your request was
received. If we are unable to respond to your request by then, we will
notify you of an extension of that timeframe.

 

If any additional factors come to light which are relevant to your
request, please do not hesitate to contact me so that these can be taken
into account.

 

Ngâ mihi

 

Julia Marshall-Mead

Senior Advisor, Official Information and Privacy

Legal Services

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

 

Phone +64 4 463
5461
[1]www.wgtn.ac.nz |
0800 04 04 04

 

 

References

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From: OIA Requests
Victoria University of Wellington


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Attachment Piahana Extension Letter University Hall accommodation advice 12 18.pdf
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Tçnâ koe Rawiri

 

Please find the attached letter relating to an extension to the timeframe
for responding to your request for information.

 

Ngâ mihi

 

Julia Marshall-Mead

Senior Advisor, Official Information and Privacy

Legal Services

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

 

Phone +64 4 463
5461
[1]www.wgtn.ac.nz |
0800 04 04 04

 

 

References

Visible links
1. http://www.victoria.ac.nz/
https://apc01.safelinks.protection.outlo...

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