Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for NZEI Te Riu Roa members
Auckland is currently in Alert Level 3, and the rest of New Zealand is currently in Alert Level 2, following the discovery of community transmission in Auckland on 11 August.
At Alert Level 3, all education services are only open to children of essential workers, and staff who are at higher risk of severe illness should remain at home. At Alert Level 2, education services remain open but with strict health and safety guidelines in place.
For the latest COVID-19 guidance, please check covid19.govt.nz
All advice on this page is based on current information from Government agencies. For the most up to date information about COVID-19 and its impacts on your work, please visit the Ministry of Education website directly here.
Now more than ever is a time to pull together and support one another. Stamping out COVID-19 requires all our effort! Some of this is basic – remembering to wash our hands thoroughly and regularly – and some of it has been more challenging, like self-isolation. Ultimately, we can get through this together – but we need to be careful, intentional, and remember to look after one another.
Important links and key contacts
- For overall Covid-19 information visit covid19.govt.nz
- For details about how COVID-19 will affect you and education services, please check the Ministry of Education’s advice in the first instance. Here are the most recent bulletins from the Ministry:
- For COVID-19 clinical advice and information contact Healthline on 0800 358 5453 or +64 9 358 5453.
- If you need to contact your public health officer, here is a list of Public Health Unit Contacts via the Ministry of Health.
- If you’re a principal or executive officer and have questions about how COVID-19 affects your school or kura, contact your local Ministry of Education regional office.
- If you need help with COVID-19-related employment issues, contact our Member Support Centre on email@example.com 0800 693 443.
NZEI Te Riu Roa events and hui
All NZEI Te Riu Roa events and hui during the lockdown period have been cancelled, postponed, or will take place remotely. If you’re uncertain about the status of the event you were intending to attend, please contact the organiser directly.
We will give as much notice as possible where we've had to cancel or postpone. For events and hui that we've had to cancel we've done our best to contact those affected directly. Refunds will be offered for any paid events that have been cancelled.
We are actively reviewing all of our later upcoming events and hui in light of COVID-19 and will make decisions on future events based on the Government’s guidelines for gatherings of people. Here are the decisions about some key events - this will be updated as new information is available:
Paid Union Meetings
Paid Union Meetings that have been scheduled for this week will go ahead as planned outside of Auckland. Those in Auckland will take place online instead of in-person.
Election Debate on Thursday 13 August
The election debate has been cancelled. It's important that education remains a key issue this election, so we'll be finding other ways to put our members' issues at the fore.
Our Annual Meeting will still be held virtually on Sunday 27 September. You can find more information about this year's Annual Meeting here.
Mental health support
EAPs (Employee Assistance Programmes)
Employers often sign up to employee assistance programmes as part of meeting their health and safety in employment obligations. EAP is confidential counselling and support, delivered via counsellors nationwide – sometimes in person, but also via phone or video chat. You should check to see if your employer is signed up to a provider. The main provider used by schools is EAP Services Limited - www.eapservices.co.nz 0800 327 669.
Community based support (phone based)
- Anxious/depressed: text 1737 to talk to a trained counsellor 24/7
- Depression Line: 0800 111 757
- Alcohol and Drug Helpline: 0800 787 797
- Family Violence info line: 0800 456 450
- Health line: 0800 611 116
- Lifeline Aotearoa nationwide: 0800 543 354
- Warmline (Mental Health Peer Support): 0800 200 207
- Victim Support: 0800 842 846
- Outline: LGBTIQ- affirming support line and face to face counselling- 0800 688 5463
- Suicide crisis helpline: 0508 828 865
- Anxiety phone line: 0800 269 4389
Useful websites/ online support
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to a range of other illnesses such as influenza. Having any of these symptoms does not necessarily mean that you have COVID-19.
I’m concerned I may have contracted the virus. What should I do?
If you have the symptoms and have recently been to a country or area of concern, or have been in close contact with someone confirmed with COVID-19, please call Healthline's COVID-19 line, with translators and interpreters available 24/7 in 150 languages:
If you intend to visit your GP or after-hours medical centre, phone ahead to let them know.
More health advice and virus prevention information is available on the Ministry of Health website here: COVID-19 health advice for the public – Ministry of Health.
What should I do to minimise the risk?
Everyone in Auckland, except for those working in essential services, are being asked to stay home at this time. Across the rest of the country you should practice physical distancing.
- Cough and sneeze into your elbow
- Wash hands for at least 20 seconds with water and soap and dry them thoroughly:
- before eating or handling food
- after using the toilet
- after coughing, sneezing, blowing your nose or wiping children’s noses
- after caring for sick people.
You should take particular care if you are over 70-years-old or have underlying medical conditions, such as:
- a compromised immune system
- liver disease
- kidney disease
- heart disease
- diabetes mellitus
- respiratory conditions, such as COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
Go to the Ministry of Health website for more information about preventing the risk: