COVID-19: Daily Update 23rd March 2020
Over the coming weeks we will provide daily updates for university partners and the wider HE sector on our response to Covid-19. Please check back here for the latest update.
As the Covid-19 situation continues to develop, we are working to make sure students still resident in our buildings are fully supported.
- At present we are able to staff all buildings to a safe level
- Students who need to self-isolate are being given guidance and support to do so safely.
- We are reaching out to all students who are known to have a medical condition that makes them vulnerable to Covid-19. If they need or prefer to remain in their accommodation we will offer them support to self-isolate for as long as they need.
- Our Student Services team is working closely with university student services to ensure students can still access the support they need. Our teams are actively monitoring and signposting students who may need additional support at this time.
We know that there are students who will be unable to go home for the summer, including some international students and those who are care leavers or estranged from their parents. Students in this position will be able to stay on free of charge until they are able to return home or make other arrangements.
We recognise the difficult position in which students up and down the UK find themselves following universities’ decision to end face-to-face teaching. Over the last few days, we have been in intensive discussion with universities, professional bodies and the relevant health authorities. We wanted to find a way to ease the financial pressures on students and their families at this difficult time, while being mindful of our responsibility to other stakeholders including the 1,900 people we employ across the country.
We can now confirm that any student who does not plan to stay in their Unite or Liberty Living home for their third university term (after Easter) can surrender their tenancy and will not be liable for outstanding rental payments. Further details can be found here.
This decision applies to all students who pay their rent directly to Unite Students or Liberty Living. We have been in touch with all our university partners today to let them know about our decision.
For those students who do wish to stay with us and continue paying rent, our teams will work closely with university student services team, local authorities and other statutory services to ensure they have access to the support they need, especially those who need to self-isolate.
We are acutely aware of the dilemma facing students who are unable to return home, for example because of international travel restrictions or because they are care leavers or estranged from their families. With this in mind, we have undertaken to offer, at no cost, accommodation to anyone who needs to remain living with us beyond the end of their current tenancy agreement.