Warden impressed with university’s handling of positive cases

ANTIGONISH: The warden of the Municipality of the County of Antigonish says officials with StFX University have handled themselves the best they can in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As university officials confirmed the third positive case on campus last week, Warden Owen McCarron said the county is asking people to continue to support and be mindful of their neighbour.

All three cases have been students who returned to Antigonish from outside the Atlantic Provinces following their holiday break.

Following their regular municipal council meeting on Jan. 11, McCarron indicated university officials established a “solid plan” with assistance from public health officials to allow students to return to Antigonish for in-person classes.

“They followed that right through the whole fall [semester], and then starting into the new semester, obviously they were ready,” he said. “We’re very confident that the university is doing all the right things, along with public health guidance.”

While McCarron suggested he hasn’t heard from any residents on the issue, he’s heard directly from StFX president Andy Hakin after each case was identified by public health.

The students who have tested positive, along with the other returning students are following their isolation requirements, and the warden is confident the proper protocols are in place to limit the spread of COVID-19.

“They followed the protocols and they’re isolating as they should,” McCarron said.

The warden explains council isn’t surprised by the odd case here and there, highlighting the university and the province both have done an exceptional job welcoming students back safely.

“We’re telling people to continue to be vigilant, like the Premier said a number of times, COVID is lurking somewhere, be careful,” McCarron added. “If people feel somethings that not right, pick up the phone and dial 811.”