Caller fears university students descending on cities amid pandemic

20 August 2020, 15:42

By Fiona Jones

Caller fears university students descending on cities will spread coronavirus as institutions begin to open up for the new educational year.

Caller Tina has a daughter who is going into her third year of university and will be living with six other friends, leaving Tina worried that the virus will not only spread between them but to those that live in the city.

She reflected, "There's been so much talk in the media about the schools going back, teachers being concerned.

"Hundreds of thousands of older teenagers and young people in their twenties are going to be migrating in to the centre of our cities. For example, Manchester has still got some sort of lockdown.

"What happens when all these students are forming brand new households in city centres? Why is nobody talking about this?" Tina asked.

Shelagh reflected that the experience of coronavirus is "never-ending" and each week there is a new element to unfold and examine.

"This is a layer that now needs to be seriously looked at, whether a city is in semi-lockdown or not," Shelagh said.

Tina said that while there is a lot of focus on children going back to schools, that can be manageable as children can be in their school bubbles and their teachers do not change.

"The students that are going to be living independently...all these new households are going to be formed."

Tina also pointed out that she has concern about how these students will be welcomed, especially the younger cohorts who are attending university for the first time.