SGPS Event Sanctioning

An Update Regarding Event Sanctioning

June 16, 2021

Queen’s has established a Co-Curricular Restart Advisory Group (CRAG)  to provide oversight and develop guidelines for the gradual re-introduction of in-person, student-led orientation events and other activities organized by student clubs and societies.

The transition to on-campus activities presents a significant adjustment for the university community and our main priority is the successful return of in-person academic activities. As such, the following planning principles for student-led events have been developed:


  • As communicated by the Provost in March 2021, the majority of undergraduate and graduate orientation activities will be delivered remotely, with some opportunities to pilot limited in-person activities. Orientation activities will focus on enhancing the student experience and creating opportunities for students to meet and socialize with peers.
  • Approval from CRAG is required for any proposed in-person, on-campus orientation events to ensure they align with public health guidance, provincial regulations, and university protocols.
  • Members of CRAG are working closely with the SGPS. Further details regarding CRAG’s orientation planning guidelines and approval processes will be shared with the SGPS membership shortly.

Other Student-Led Co-Curricular Activities

  • All other student-led co-curricular activities, such as student clubs, will be held virtually in early fall.
  • The start date of other in-person, student-led co-curricular activities will be determined in September, following an assessment of any in-person orientation activities.
  • Approval from CRAG will be required for any student-led in-person events in early fall 2021 to ensure they align with public health guidance, provincial regulations, and university protocols. It is anticipated that CRAG will begin considering applications for in-person student-led events in late September 2021.
  • It is anticipated that the university will gradually transition to in-person student-led co-curricular activities over the course of the fall term.

Guidelines and event planning templates for on-campus, in-person orientation events are in development and will be shared with the SGPS and our members shortly. Further details on the approval process for other in-person, student led co-curricular activities and events will be shared in late summer.

CRAG is chaired by Corinna Fitzgerald, Assistant Dean, Student Life and Learning, and Kim Murphy, Executive Director, Risk and Safety Services. The group includes representatives from the AMS and SGPS, faculties and schools, and shared service units. CRAG reports to the Campus Operations Group. The Terms of Reference and membership of CRAG can be found on the Campus Operations Group webpage.

Please direct any questions regarding the Co-Curricular Restart Advisory Group (CRAG) to

Step 1: Gather Ideas

Tired of the same events, year after year? Looking to add something new to your annual programs? There are multiple resources available to help spice up your events and create new ones!

Reach out to other Departmental / Faculty Societies
No need to reinvent the wheel! Borrow event ideas from student groups around Queen’s. Learn about their successful events, organizational structure, and fundraising ideas. Take it a step further and collaborate!

Consider Making Your Event a Green Event
Events can use a lot of energy and produce a lot of waste. There are actions that you can take throughout all steps of the planning process that will minimize the environmental impact of your event as well as save you money and add a new positive dimension to your organization’s image.

Step 2: Create A Plan

Once you have your idea, take the time to really think through the logistics of your event with your group. Answering the following questions will help with the rest of the planning process:

  • Who will be the point person for this event?
  • What day of the week/time of the year would be ideal?
  • Come up with 2-3 possible dates for your event to be flexible when finding a location.
  • What locations would be ideal?
  • Come up with 2 possible locations to allow for flexibility.
  • How many people do you expect at your event? Make sure your expected attendance matches the room capacity for your location.
  • What would be the ideal start and end time for this event? How much set-up and/or breakdown time will we need?
  • Who is most likely to attend this event? Who is your target audience?
  • Can you co-sponsor with another group, department or faculty?
Step 3: Assess The Risks

There is risk in any and all activities. That doesn’t mean that there is danger tied to any and all activities, it just means that everyone has to be mindful of what risks exist and the potential consequences of said risks.

This is where a risk matrix comes in!

Be honest in with your self and your group when assessing the risks. If you have any questions or concerns, contact for support.

Step 3.5: Assess The COVID-19 Specific Risks

Event organizers are required to have detailed COVID-19 safety plans in place prior to resuming on-campus outdoor events. Organizers will be providing the details of their safety plans within the event sanctioning form. The following information will assist you with identifying safety protocols for on-campus outdoor event operations.

This plan reflects Guidelines for Fall 2021 Student-Led Orientation Events. This plan may be required to be updated as public health guidelines evolve.

Refer to the Queen’s COVID-19 Information website for up-to-date information and additional resources including the Return to Campus Guidelines to help you plan for a safe return to campus.

Please direct questions relating to this to

Screening & Monitoring
By keeping symptomatic event participants and other people from entering your activities, you can help to reduce possible transmission of COVID-19. Know the symptoms, and plan for self-screening.

All participants must actively self-screen for COVID-19 BEFORE coming on to campus. All leaders and participants are required to complete the COVID-19 assessment tool in the SeQure App just prior to attending the event.

Measures must be put in place to provide a reminder to all individuals to not enter the space if they are exhibiting any symptoms of COVID-19 This could include signage, distribution of information to participants prior to the event, etc.

Public Health Risk Mitigation Measures
COVID-19 can spread by people who do not have symptoms. This is why it is very important to have effective control measures in place. Public health guidance on controlling transmission will change over time, and as vaccination rates increase.

You must ensure that all participants are wearing appropriate face coverings and you must communicate the requirement for face covering to participants. There are also must be a plan in place to address how you will handle individuals who refuse to wear a face covering or refuse to wear one properly. You should also plan to have extra masks available if needed.

You will also be responsible for informing participants of the requirement to practice the required public health standard precautions such as face covering,  hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, etc.  (E.g. Posting signage or distributing information to participants to provide reminders to frequently wash or sanitize hands, use proper cough and sneeze etiquette, etc.).

You must also provide participants with the ability to properly clean their hands – for example, providing regular access to alcohol-based hand sanitizer or soap and water if easily accessible. You must ensure that participants are instructed to properly clean their hands before entering the event space, after contact with objects and surfaces others may have touched, and whenever else it may be needed.

Finally, you will also be responsible for disinfecting any commonly touched surfaces or shared tools or objects before and after each event.

Participant Education
It will be the responsibility of the event organizers to educate all participants on the protocols to ensure their compliance with health and safety directives of the university, health unit and government (e.g. university guidelines, hand hygiene, masks, etc.)

Reporting a COVID-19 Exposure
If informed by an volunteer or participant of a positive COVID-19 test, the event organizer will immediately contact the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) at or 613-533-2999.

In order to support contact tracing by the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health Unit (KFLAPH), the event organizer must provide to EHS the name, phone number and email of the person in a password protected Word document.

The Director of Environmental Health and Safety will be the lead in contacting KFLAPH and will liaise between them and the event organizer.

If needed, and as instructed by EHS, event organizer will provide the names and phone numbers for those identified by KFLAPH as contacts during the case and contact management process in a password protected word document to EHS.  You must also be prepared to review the presence/activity of any others involved in the event to identify other potential contacts of the identified case.

EH&S, on the advice of KFLAPH, will provide the event organizer responsible an action plan in terms of next steps for a response, cleaning, further communications, etc.

If the event organizer responsible is concerned about reports or information about potential cases connected to the orientation event, they will contact EHS to discuss and get guidance regarding the situation.

The event organizer responsible for the event will be contacted by The Director of Environmental Health and Safety in the event that a positive case has been identified by KFLAPH as being connected with the event.  EHS will lead the event organizer responsible through the processes listed above in support of case and contact management.

Step 4: Lock Down Your Date

It is always best to pick a couple of possible dates for your event to have some flexibility when finding a location.

For O-Week September 2021 please remember that only the following dates are available:

  • Sunday, September 5
  • Monday, September 6
  • Saturday, September 25
  • Sunday, September 26
  • or on any weekday evening in September 2021

When choosing possible dates, be sure to check out the University calendar and the SGPS events calendar for any potential conflicts with religious holidays, reading/final exam periods, or other campus events.

Step 5: Apply For Event Sanctioning

Apply for event sanctioning with the SGPS using this form. Applying for event sanctioning allows for you to receive resources and support, if needed. Once you have submitted your event it will be forwarded on for review by the SGPS and following SGPS review, Queen’s Co-Curricular Restart Advisory Group (CRAG).

For September 2021, the deadlines to apply for event sanctioning are as follows:

  • For events taking place on Sunday, September 5, or Monday, September 6
    • You must submit your sanctioning application by August 9th.
  • For events taking place on Saturday, September 25, or Sunday, September 26
    • You must submit your sanctioning application by September 1st. 
  • For events taking place on weekday evenings during September 2021
    • You must submit your sanctioning application three weeks in advance of the date of your event.
Step 6: Take Care Of The Logistics

The following checklist will help you in planning a sanctioned event. Use this checklist—in order— throughout the planning process to keep things on track.

  • Apply for sanctioning with the SGPS. Applying for event sanctioning with us allows for you to receive resources and support, if needed. Once you have submitted your event it will be forwarded on for review by both the SGPS and Queen’s Co-Curricular Restart Advisory Group (CRAG). Applications for sanctioning are due in the dates outlined in Step 5.
  • Secure Volunteers (Have group members sign up to make themselves available should anything occur during the actual event).
Step 7: Promote Your Event

It is not only important to promote your events, but it is critical to promote your group as a whole.

There are a number of ways to publicize a group on campus such as social media, the Queen’s Event Calendar, and department/faculty specific listservs.

Contact your department for information how to access your specific listserv.

Step 8: Evaluate Your Event

Answer the following questions honestly to provide feedback for future events. Keep this information on file for future event planners within your group.

  • How many people attended this event? Did more or less people attend this event than you expected?
  • What methods of marketing/advertising did you use? How effective were these methods?
  • What went well with the planning and implementation of this event?
  • What problems did you encounter when planning and implementing this event?
  • If you organized a green event, did you meet all of your goals for reducing waste and promoting sustainability?