UCV COVID-19 Go-Slowly-Forward Plan

Unitarian Church of Vancouver Coronavirus
(COVID-19) Policy

In this Coronavirus (COVID-19) policy, you’ll find our go-slowly-forward plan and all essential guidelines staff and congregants must follow for Summer 2020.

Until Further Notice: Entry into any UCV building is strictly prohibited, without first advising the UCV Office, and signing in.

Policy brief & purpose

Our UCV policy includes the measures we are actively taking to mitigate the spread of coronavirus. Please follow all these rules diligently, to sustain a healthy and safe space and to ensure the health and well-being of our broader community. It’s important that we all respond responsibly and transparently to these health precautions.

The UCV coronavirus (COVID-19) policy is subject to changes with the introduction of additional governmental guidelines or new outbreak concerns. If changes are made, we will update the public and congregation by posting updates to ucv.im/covid as well as sending a direct update via email. To ensure you are receiving all of our latest communication, please make sure you have signed up for the order of service email and the monthly e-bulletin. If you are unsure if you are signed up, or would like to update your contact information, please email info@vancouverunitarians.ca.


This coronavirus policy applies to all staff and long-term renters of UCV who physically work in our offices, as well as congregants, members and friends who may visit the space or wish to rent rooms for social activities.

Measures We Have Taken

Over the past few months, we have taken the following protective measures at UCV:

  • Moved all Sunday Worship Services online at ucv.im/live to reduce the risk of outbreaks.
  • Closed all buildings to members and the public with only essential access for staff and the worship service live-streaming team. Grounds have remained open with physical distancing in effect.
  • Moved to Zoom-based fellowships, community events and religious exploration.
  • Supported staff to make safe choices about when/how to be onsite or to work from home.
  • Implemented a disinfecting and cleaning protocol to ensure regular sanitization onsite.

UCV Go-Slowly-Forward Plan

The Emergency Response Team at UCV is made up of the minister, board members, administrative staff, and representatives from Buildings and Grounds, Religious Exploration, and Communications. Together we have weighed and reviewed the public health policy contained within the BC Restart Plan, the CDC Guidance for Faith-Based Organizations, and the Worksafe BC Safety Plan Development Guide.

We recognize the importance of our community experience, as well as our need as human beings to gather together and make contact face to face. We also respect and uphold the incredible and diligent work of our public health leaders, scientists, and frontline workers who have been at the forefront of protecting our needs and safety.

With these perspectives in mind, we have established small steps towards re-opening our church, which will ensure our ability to keep up with the latest information, adjust our protocols as necessary, and respond with care and diligence if concerns arise.

We have developed this policy to address the immediate future only. This document is in effect for July and August 2020. We do not have enough insight to suggest what to expect in the Fall, but we are actively monitoring updates from the province and will continue to update our policy as we know more.

June 2020

We made a firm decision to keep UCV’s buildings closed to the public for all of June 2020. Worship service live-streaming crew, limited staff and caretakers have had essential access only. Worship services continue to be online-only.

July and August 2020

We will begin to allow room bookings for Hewett Centre Hall (main space only). Available timeslots will be allocated to groups with priority given first to congregants and members of UCV. External rentals will be considered on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of our office administrators and the Emergency Response Team. For detailed information on room booking protocol, please see the section Room Bookings. Worship services will continue to be online-only for the entire duration of the summer.

September 2020

In mid-August we will release an update to these policies and guidelines, based on the Provincial health regulations, which will detail our Fall 2020 plan.  

General Policies

  • If you have any symptoms of illness, even minor ones, please do not visit the UCV buildings and grounds.
  • If you have recently returned from areas with a high number of COVID-19 cases (based on CDC announcements), or if you have recently come into contact with someone with COVID-19, please follow the public health guidelines for the standard 14-day selfquarantine.
  • If you normally commute to UCV by public transportation and do not have other alternatives, please consider staying home, and organizing an online event instead.
  • If you are considered part of a high-risk group, please consider staying home and organizing online events instead.
  • We ask that all visitors to UCV follow the advice for general hygiene while on campus:

General Hygiene

  • Practice physical distancing. Please stay at least 6 feet apart from others.
  • Wash your hands if you touch high-touch areas, if you touch your face or adjust your mask, after using the toilet, before eating, and if you cough/sneeze into your hands (follow the 20-second handwashing rule). You can also use the sanitizers you’ll find all around UCV.
  • Cough/sneeze into your sleeve, preferably into your elbow. If you use a tissue, discard it properly and clean/sanitize your hands immediately.
  • Open the windows regularly to ensure open ventilation.
  • Avoid touching your face to prevent infection.
  • We strongly encourage the use of non-medical masks for indoor groups.


UCV Room Bookings (July and August)

The only room available for booking in July and August will be the Hewett Centre Main Hall. In future, the Sanctuary may also be rented, but approval of this will require a special plan made with the office at the discretion of office administration and the Emergency Response Team.

All gatherings must be booked ahead of time through Marcus Hynes by emailing info@vancouverunitarians.ca.

Please note: The Kitchen, Fireside, Lindsey/Priestley, Library, Biddle, Childcare, and Hitschmanova all remain completely closed to both members and the public. Please do not ask caretakers to allow you into these areas. There will be no exceptions. Use of the UCV outdoor grounds, labyrinths and gardens are permitted, with physical distancing in effect.

Hewett Centre Main Hall Area Booking Policies

  • Events in the Hewett Centre Main Hall may have maximum of 20 guests.
  • Unscheduled meetings will not be allowed.
    • If an unscheduled meeting occurs, caretakers will kindly ask the group to leave and will provide them with the contact information for making a proper booking. Time slots must be booked through the office at info@vancouverunitarians.ca
  • There are three options for the room set-up:
    • Empty (no tables, no chairs), with floor markings showing appropriate distancing.
    • Tables and chairs (e.g. 10 round tables) set at appropriate distancing.
    • Comfy chairs from Fireside room set in a circle with appropriate distancing.
  • There will be absolutely no access to the kitchen or any coffee, tea, food service amenities.
  • Washrooms will be one-at-a-time to allow for safe physical distancing around sinks and stalls.
  • Time slots will be limited to 2-hour blocks. People may book more than one 2-hour block, but must leave the space after each block to allow for cleaning protocols to be carried out. We strongly encourage booking only one time slot for your event to limit the potential for exposure.
  • A caretaker must be present for all gatherings.
  • Caretakers will be responsible for:
    • Event check-in, and ensuring that visitors have signed the Logbook for contact tracing (only if groups are unable to do this themselves).
    • Monitoring for COVID-19 protocols (physical distancing, availability of hand sanitizer, trash disposal, soap and cleaning supplies).
    • Enforcing protocols as outlined in this document.
    • Politely requesting guests to leave if they arrive showing symptoms of illness.
    • Cleaning and sanitizing prior to an event, and resetting the space (surfaces, door handles, washrooms, equipment etc.) in between each rental. No visitors will be allowed in the space while this is happening.

Employee Reopening Safety Plan


  • Masks and gloves are available for staff should they feel the need to wear them.
  • Staff are strongly encouraged to wear masks when disinfecting common areas, and when groups are at maximum capacity, or social distancing presents a challenge.
  • If gloves are worn they need to be washed with the same frequency as hands.
  • Do not reuse disposable gloves.
  • Staff should use the proper technique to remove gloves so the contaminated side ends up inside.
  • Masks and gloves are located in the Janitors’ Closet, and in the Mail Room. Additional masks and gloves are in the crawlspace in the Admin building.
  • Caretakers should wash the clothes worn during their shift if they have come in contact with numerous people.


  • Maximum capacity signs will be placed at the entrance of each room.
  • Social distancing reminder signs will be posted at the entrance of each room and additional reminders inside each room.
  • Reminders to those experiencing symptoms have been posted at all building entrances.
  • Traffic flow signs will be taped on the floor, to avoid congestion at entrances. In the UCV office, there will be standing area signs to avoid congestion and encourage social distancing in the reception area.
  • Sanitizing signs “last sanitized by name, date, time” will be filled out after each sanitizing with a wipeable marker on a laminated sheet. For each room. In addition to this a sheet will be initialed for all spaces that have been sanitized during the shift, and how many times it was completed
  • Handwashing signs will be posted in washrooms, and at the photocopier.

Cleaning Protocol

  • Hand sanitizer will be provided at each entrance to be used prior to entry.
  • When groups have booked a meeting, the caretaker on-duty will sanitize all entry points, washrooms, and common areas in each room/building a minimum of 2x or every 2 hours.

Contact Tracing

  • Entrance logs will be placed directly upon entry in each UCV building. Contact is compulsory for every individual entering a UCV building, regardless of the reason. (Congregation members will be asked to log their events and participants in the breeze database.)
  • Hand sanitizer will be available at this station as well.
  • If employees begin to experience symptoms prior or during your shift, please advise your supervisor and immediately put on a mask. In the event of illness, emergency cab fare will be provided.
  • Supervisors will arrange immediate coverage for the employee who has taken ill..
  • Always call 911 for emergency.

Non-medical information about COVID-19 is available 7:30am-8pm, 7 days a week at 1-888-COVID19 (1-888-268-4319).


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