Babies and Children on Campus Guidelines


Introduction


The University is committed to providing equal opportunities to all who have the potential to succeed in a University of high international standing and to ensure that it does not discriminate unfairly, including on the grounds of family responsibility or gender. It seeks to support staff and students with childcare responsibilities to succeed in their work and study, without impacting negatively on the work or study environment of others.

Reasons for staff and students bringing babies and children on campus (in lecture theatres, tutorials, events etc) include:

  • infant feeding including breastfeeding
  • taking children to or from Early Childhood Education Centres
  • attending social events which include children
  • short term arrangements due to non-communicable ill health or holiday care needs

Application


These guidelines are intended to apply to all staff, students, visitors and other members of the University community when they are responsible for babies and children on the University campus (ECE centres are covered by separate legislation and regulation).

Purpose


These guidelines are intended to support staff and students when there are babies and children on campus.

Guidelines


  • University policies concerning leave and flexible work arrangements for staff, support staff with caring responsibilities
  • Employees are entitled to use their sick leave to care for babies and children (or a dependent family member)
  • School holiday programmes are publicised through the Equity Office website
  • Early Childhood Education, Kohanga reo and Kohungahunga facilities for staff and students include:
    • Early Childhood Education Centres on the City, Tamaki, Grafton and Epsom Campuses
    • parent space provided by AUSA and Campus Life on the City and Tamaki Campuses
    • designated spaces for breastfeeding and expressing milk and available fridges for milk storage
  • Responsibility for all aspects of a baby’s  or child’s behaviour and responsibility for their safety rests solely with their parent and/or caregiver
  • It is advisable for caregivers as a matter of courtesy and safety, to advise the relevant manager or lecturer when children are present.  Notification may not always be appropriate, for example, if babies and children are in transit through an area not subject to restrictions and where no safety issues arise
  • If the presence of babies and children will impact on other staff and/or students, or raise safety issues, the caregiver should ensure plans are in place and agreed so as to ensure minimum disruption, and to ensure the children in their care are safe
  • Requests for babies and children being present on campus will, so far as reasonably possible, be accommodated with flexibility and sensitivity
  • If a manager or lecturer has concerns about a baby or child being present in an area for which they have responsibility, these concerns are to be discussed with the caregiver or parent as soon as possible with a view to seeking a resolution  
  • The presence of babies and children on a field trip must be approved by the person in charge of the field trip before the event takes place
  • Babies and children present on University premises are not permitted in the areas of the University where:
    • there are health and safety issues, such as workshops or laboratories where   chemicals are stored, near plant rooms or other hazardous areas
    • material and equipment which could be easily damaged are kept
    • material which may be offensive or disturbing to children is stored or on display
  • When children are in offices in which confidential or sensitive materials are kept, they must be supervised at all times. The risk includes documents and information in all formats including soft and hard copy
  • Student caregivers or parents may seek advice from AUSA Student Advice Hub, their faculty student support staff or the University Proctor
  • Staff caregivers or parents can refer issues to their HR Manager, the University Disputes Resolution Co-ordinator or the Staff Equity Manager, Equity Office
  • It is recommended that departments establish protocols relevant to their particular circumstances. This may include waiver of the need to advise the relevant manager/lecturer if that is considered unnecessary or clear restrictions on areas which pose a risk to health and safety
  • It is also recommended that such protocols are well communicated, eg in staff induction
  • Any disagreements about a baby or child being present on campus will be determined by discussions with the relevant staff member

Definitions


The following definitions apply to this document:

Campus means the Campuses of the University of Auckland as described on the University website

Caregiver means staff, student or other person who brings a child or children onto University premises

Children means persons under the age of 14 years. Note that this definition is not intended to cover enrolled students who are under 14 years of age.

Field trips are considered to be “on campus” for the purpose of these guidelines

Staff member refers to an individual employed on a full or part time basis

Students includes all who, at the time, are enrolled as students at the University

University community includes all staff and students honorary appointees, contractors and visitors

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries

Document management and control


Content manager: Director Staff Equity

Owner: Pro Vice-Chancellor (Equity)

Date approved: 20 October 2015

Review date: 20 October 2018

Further information


More information about the University’s commitment to be a fair and inclusive place to study and work can be found on the Equity Office website.