Student update: Update on Vaccine Requirement at York University

Student update: Update on Vaccine Requirement at York University

In my last update, I shared that York will require all individuals coming to our campuses this fall to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Since then, I am very pleased to learn that the Council of Ontario Medical Officers of Health have recommended that all post-secondary institutions across the province require proof of vaccination for those coming to campus this Fall.

As a result, York University will require students to complete daily screening and submit proof of vaccination if they are:

  • Taking in-person courses;
  • Living on-campus;
  • Varsity athletes training or competing; or
  • Visiting campus to access student services.

Students studying remotely and who are not coming to campus will not be required to complete daily screenings and submit proof of vaccination.

As we work to finalize the details of our strategy, I can confirm that this September the University will require all members of the community to provide proof of full vaccination or an exemption based on a validated medical or human rights ground. 

Community members will use the YU Screen tool to submit proof of vaccination or an approved exemption request. YU Screen will be ready to accept this documentation starting September 7 and all information that is collected here will be subject to strict privacy and confidentiality requirements. Those who are not vaccinated with a WHO or Health Canada approved vaccine, are not vaccinated or are awaiting their first or second dose will be required to adhere to additional health and safety measures, including frequent testing. 

Between September 7 and October 19 (the date that proof of full vaccination is required), students attending activities on York’s campuses who are not yet fully vaccinated (including those with approved exemptions), will be required to submit proof of a negative COVID-19 test result.

We recognize that not every community member will be able to be fully vaccinated by the first day of the Fall Term. Time will also be needed to process exemtion requests for medical or other reasons recognized by the Ontario Human Rights Code. I want to assure you that the University will make every effort to support community members to receive their vaccinations in a timely way, and to access testing in the meantime where needed.

We continue to partner with Humber River Hospital to offer a series of vaccine clinics on the Keele Campus in August and September. As well, those who are eligible and who study or work on the Glendon Campus will be able to access walk-in vaccination clinics offered through Sunnybrook Hospital. Community members are also reminded that vaccines are widely available in Canada on a walk-in basis through local public health units and community pharmacies.

Anyone who is vaccinated in Ontario can prove that they have been fully vaccinated by uploading the physical or emailed receipt that was provided to them at the time of vaccination from the Ministry of Health. Vaccination receipts can be downloaded through the provincial portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line at 1-833-943-3900. Students joining us from out of province will need to provide proof of vaccination in that province. Students arriving in Canada from international destinations can use the proof of vaccination that was required for upload into the ArriveCAN app prior to entry into Canada. York University recognizes both World Health Organization and Health Canada-approved COVID-19 vaccines. If your proof of vaccination is not in English or in French, do not upload it into ArriveCAN. Follow the instructions on how to certify translations on the Government of Canada's website.

I recognize that there are still many questions about how this will be rolled out within our community. We will be sharing more specific details and instructions on the new process that will support this requirement before September 7. Thank you for doing your part to ensure a safe return to our campuses this fall.


Rhonda Lenton
President & Vice-Chancellor