As studies resume at both the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University the City Council Leader, Cllr David Mellen, has welcomed students to the city and explained the work taking place to help keep everyone safe.
Cllr Mellen said: “I’m proud that Nottingham is a welcoming city and we recognise the contribution that students – many of whom come from the city and county – make to our economy, culture and society.
“It is important that students feel welcomed and feel a valued part of our communities. But it is also important that students understand that we now live in a different world, where Covid-19 is present in our communities. Everyone has a part to play to save lives and to stop the spread of this virus – and this includes students.
“We are working with the universities to ensure the guidance is clear – everyone should maintain social distance, wear a face covering, wash hands and get a test if they have symptoms. This guidance also now includes not meeting in social groups larger than six people. It’s a lot of responsibility to put on young people who are away from home for first time, but we expect students to help keep our city safe.”
Action being taken to help keep everyone safe:
Clear messages: The City Council is working alongside Nottinghamshire Police and the city’s two universities to send out clear and consistent messages to everyone about following the new rules. Preventing the spread of the virus is a shared effort and everyone must take responsibility in all households to follow the guidance.
Hand-delivered letters: All households in areas where students live have received hand-delivered letters setting out the need to be considerate members of the community. It also informs all residents, not just students, about the powers available to tackle antisocial behaviour including house parties.
Enforcement: The vast majority of residents, including students, are responsible people. However, deliberate deviation from these rules could see swift action including fines, and even loss of tenancy agreements and for students this could include the loss of university places in extreme cases.
- Universities have the power, through student disciplinary codes, to tackle those causing a nuisance in the community.
- The City Council’s Community Protection Service works closely with both universities and has a variety of powers to tackle anti-social behaviour including civil injunctions, closure orders and breach of tenancy.
- The Police will continue to be in communities and engaging, explaining and encouraging everyone to follow the new regulations. They will disperse groups of over six and issue fines to those who refuse to comply.
Cllr Mellen continued: “It’s not fair to single out students during coronavirus. We know that the vast majority of students cause no issues at all and many even volunteer their time to support good causes and help local charities. They also make a valued contribution to our city. They help boost the economy by millions of pounds every year, which supports local businesses and helps to create jobs.
“We are simply asking everyone, including students, to be mindful of the communities in which they live – it is a shared responsibility to stop the spread of Covid and also to just be good neighbours generally. Instances of anti-social behaviour happen across the entire city, from loud parties to littering, and all types of people are responsible for this nuisance. As the City Council we will continue to work closely with all partners to encourage everyone to do their bit. But if people act irresponsibly we will use the enforcement powers available to us. These are difficult times, but if we treat each other with respect, then we can get through these tough times together.”