Trinity College was forced to spend €4,610 on upgrades to their campus’ hand sanitisation stations after criticisms.
Upgrades to the hand sanitisation stations on Trinity’s campus were required after students complained about the lack of accessibility and Irish translations.
The first installation of the stations included a foot pump to dispense the hand sanitiser. However, this was found to not be accessible, especially for people with physical disabilities and impairments.
Additionally, there were complaints that the hand sanitisation stations did not include instructions in Irish. This was found to violate the Official Languages Act which provides both English and Irish equal status as official languages of Ireland.
The inclusion of automatic hand sanitizer cost €3,400, and the addition of Irish translated instructions cost €1,210, according to the University Times.
In comparison, neither DCU Estates nor management could not offer up a total figure for installing the sanitisation stations on campus that are refilled as required. However, they did disclose they have approximately 220 hand sanitisation stations installed.
Head of Estates, Gerard McEvoy stated that these hand sanitisation stations are one part of an overall system used on campus. Other elements include “cleaning protocols, anti-viral wipes for classrooms and offices, ventilation system changes.”
On the issue of Irish instructions on the hand sanitisation stations, the standard versions on campus allegedly only include English instructions. DCU Estates were not available to comment on this.
Several other universities have been found to exclude Irish instructions; these include University College Cork, University College Dublin, Maynooth University and NUI Galway.
Currently, there are only a limited number of students allowed on campus. DCU was previously operating at reduced capacity only allowing learning activities which cannot effectively take place remotely such as practicals, laboratory and skills-based activities.
In a statement released by DCU earlier this month, it was revealed that classes would remain as they were taught in the first three weeks. Therefore if students had “some on-campus classes, they would stay at that level for the semester.”
However, since the national upgrade to Level 5 lockdown, a number of these on-campus classes have also been cancelled and moved online.
Shauna Bannon Ward
Image credit: Mitch Hodge