A Flooding and Information Support Group has been created on Facebook by YUSU President Ben Leatham in response to the extreme weather York has seen over the past few days.
The group aims to gather information regarding responses to the flooding, to help those in need find resources such as food and furniture, and to alleviate the concerns of students outside of the city regarding the current condition of York.
Leatham has compiled a database of information within the Support Group which addresses some of the student body’s chief concerns and lists details for relief services provided by the University.
Those who are unsure whether their accommodation has been affected have been instructed to contact their landlords, but students living in university accommodation are assured that the whole of campus has been unaffected, along with most areas of private student housing.
If accommodation has been rendered uninhabitable by floods, the post advises students to contact friends for temporary lodgings. The University also has limited accommodation available, which can be procured by email enquiry at [email protected], or calling 01904 324444, or in an emergency, 01904 323333.
Leatham also gives advice about insurance claims. It is the responsibility of the student to make a claim for personal belongings, but landlords should cover the cost of damage to buildings. Students who need financial support to replace damaged belongings should contact their insurer or the Student Financial Support Unit, who can offer advice and, in some cases, limited funds to help with emergencies.
In addition to Leatham’s advice, the Support Group contains a message from the University’s Registrar and Secretary, David Duncan, detailing the process of claiming Mitigating Circumstances for students whose housing has been affected by floods. Duncan chiefly advises that “affected students should endeavour to take all those exams they are scheduled to take”, and submit any open assessments for the scheduled deadline.
However, if the disruption caused by flooding of your own housing renders this advice impossible to follow, Duncan suggests that a Mitigating Circumstances Claim Form and necessary evidence should be submitted as soon as possible. He also observes that “the University is currently closed for the period between Christmas and New Year, and staff who might approve Mitigating Circumstances claims are not likely to return to work until Monday 4th January”, so students will not be penalised for claiming Mitigating Circumstances after the deadline or exam has passed.
Further information provided by the group confirms that the 66 bus service is still running, though delayed by diversions, the internet connection on campus remains stable and the NISA on campus is “trading as published” on the store’s Commercial Services site.
Finally, the support group claims it will collate volunteering opportunities with the assistance of the University, YUSU and York City Council. Those who wish to help with the clean-up effort can sign up online.