CRPA response to the COVID-19 pandemic / Réponse de l’ACRP à la pandémie de COVID-19
A message to our faithful CRPA members, colleagues, and friends
March 30, 2020
No doubt about it, we are in difficult times. COVID-19 rapidly became a pandemic (declared by the World Health Organization on March 12, 2020).
As radiation safety professionals, we have a responsibility to the public, workers, and the environment to protect against potentially harmful effects of exposure to ionizing and non-ionizing radiation. However, as safety professionals (in the broader sense), we simply have a duty to protect. CRPA is a professional safety association.
We take the safety and security of our members, our families, and the public seriously. As such, the CRPA board of directors and the 2020 local organizing committee have made the difficult, yet necessary, decision to cancel this year’s conference, which was supposed to be held in Winnipeg.
The board wishes to acknowledge the hard work and dedication that the organizing committee in Winnipeg has put into what undoubtedly would have been an excellent conference. Thank you, one and all, for your efforts.
At this point, no one knows how long this pandemic will last, how long protective measures will be needed, and how long the recovery phase will be (not to mention the backlog of work most CRPA members will be dealing with long after the pandemic has subsided). As such, we do not believe postponing the conference is an option.
CRPA is not the only organization cancelling or postponing events:
- The International Radiation Protection Association has postponed IRPA15 until January 2021.
- The Canadian Nuclear Society’s annual conference has been cancelled.
The list goes on and on. CRPA is embodying our due diligence by cancelling a large gathering of people in these unsure times, and the board believes we are acting appropriately as concerned global citizens. While this is disappointing, we believe it is in the best interest of both the members and the general public.
We will be issuing refunds to those who have already registered by whatever payment method was used to register.
Despite this cancellation, the board is working on events to keep our members engaged in the association. In the coming weeks, we will be sharing information with you about online activities, such as participation in the annual general meeting, and other types of professional development. Stay tuned!
Health Canada continues to recommend frequent handwashing, minimal touching, and social distancing as the best defence against COVID-19. To better understand what social distancing means, it might be easier to think of it as physical distancing. DO NOT emotionally distance yourself from others!
There are many ways we can interact without being in the same physical spaces. Pick up the phone, send an email, write a letter, play games online, check out some of the many free courses and professional development online, learn a new language . . . The possibilities are endless.
Remember, the CRPA board of directors is here to serve you. If you have any questions, please feel free to email us anytime through the secretariat ([email protected]).
Stay safe and stay strong!
Canadian Radiation Protection Association