Like organisations around Australia and the world, the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) is keen to ensure we take a responsible approach to minimising risk of transmitting the novel coronavirus, Covid-19. ATSE is also working on its business continuity plan and is working with relevant groups and committees to plan contingencies as needed.

ATSE has been monitoring the Covid-19 situation and updating our approaches to meetings, seminars, consultations and events as necessary. Today, in the interests of reducing potential for transmission, and to keep our Fellows, staff and stakeholders safe, we have taken the difficult decision to postpone in-person meetings and events.

All of the IMNIS – STEM Careers in Industry events scheduled in March will be POSTPONED until a future date (to be determined), including the event that was scheduled for Thursday morning, 19 March in Melbourne, VIC.

The IMNIS – Engaging with Industry events scheduled in May, will now pivot to an online WEBINAR format. We’ll send out the details as soon as we have things in place.

ATSE will resume in-person events as soon as it is safe and sensible to do so. In the meantime we hope you understand, and I look forward to meeting you by video soon! This is an opportunity to bring IMNIS events online, so I hope you will join me in embracing this new forum.

I remind all mentors, mentees, guests and participants that a higher level of personal hygiene is currently the expected standard.

Before any meeting, please note you should not attend if you are experiencing any cold or flu-like symptoms. Those who attend should not shake hands or have any physical contact with other attendees and should refrain from touching their face. Please engage in frequent hand-washing with soap; and use the implements provided to serve others and/or help yourself to food.

Each individual must make their own judgement about whether to attend a meeting or gathering. Some people may be immuno-compromised, be caring for an elderly parent or friend, or caring for/interacting with people who are not in robust good health. Importantly, no adverse inferences should be drawn if an individual chooses not to participate. A reminder that from May 2020, IMNIS events will pivot to an online webinar format until further notice. Regular updates will be provided.

If you decide to meet in person, I ask that you remind yourselves of increased hygiene standards and social distancing at the start of your IMNIS-related meetings. We specifically ask everyone to refrain from hand-shaking and other touch. Making this declaration and agreement up front will remove the burden from any individual having to declare their discomfort with contact.

The current advice regarding minimising transmission risk from Australia’s Chief Medical Officer is as follows:

  • wash hands often, with soap and water
  • use a tissue or your elbow (not your bare hands) to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze
  • avoid close contact with others, such as touching

You can also contact the Coronavirus Health Information Line for more information.

Thanks in advance for supporting ATSE and the IMNIS team in this pivot to online events, increased hygiene practices and social distancing.

A final note to say thank you – to the entire IMNIS Network – for leading by example and showing kindness, understanding and compassion during this challenging time for all of us. Please be sure to check-in with each other, follow the advice, and access the resources of your respective organisations. If anyone is feeling alone – please reach out to others, your organisation’s Employee Assistance Program and/or mental health services, and know you will receive support.

If you or someone you know needs urgent support, talk to someone you trust or contact a crisis support service listed below:

Adults:

Lifeline 13 11 14 www.lifeline.org.au

Beyond Blue 1300 224 636 www.beyondblue.org.au

Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467 www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au

MensLine Australia 1300 789 978 www.mensline.org.au

QLife 1800 184 527 (3pm – 12am) www.qlife.org.au

Emergency services: 000

Young people:

Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800 www.kidshelpline.com.au

Headspace 1800 650 890 www.headspace.org.au

ReachOut.com www.au.reachout.com

Emergency services: 000

 

Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea AM

IMNIS Executive Director | Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering | imnis.org.au

Updated 16 March, 2020