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Head of UBC school of public health resigns after travelling amid COVID-19 restrictions

Click to play video 'UBC director resigns over holiday travel during COVID-19 restrictions' UBC director resigns over holiday travel during COVID-19 restrictions
High-level UBC staffer Peter Berman has stepped down from his position as Director of the School of Public Health because of the controversy over his holiday travel. Jordan Armstrong reports – Jan 15, 2021

The head of UBC‘s School of Population and Public Health has now resigned after travelling for a vacation over the holiday break.

Dr. Peter Berman travelled to Hawaii amid COVID-19 restrictions and public health advice not to travel internationally.

Berman originally apologized for taking the vacation, saying he truly regretted the decision.

Click to play video 'Fallout continues from non-essential travel by B.C. officials' Fallout continues from non-essential travel by B.C. officials
Fallout continues from non-essential travel by B.C. officials – Jan 9, 2021

However, nearly two dozen faculty members of UBC’s School of Population and Public Health signed a letter expressing dismay over their director’s decision.

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“This decision to travel harms our school’s ability to contribute leadership in calling for our communities to sustain daily sacrifices to prevent the spread of COVID-19 for the public good,” the letter stated.

Read more: UBC public health faculty members pen letter slamming director’s Hawaiian vacation

Click to play video 'Premier Horgan says B.C. government will seek legal advice on non-essential travel' Premier Horgan says B.C. government will seek legal advice on non-essential travel
Premier Horgan says B.C. government will seek legal advice on non-essential travel – Jan 14, 2021

In a statement, UBC said it cannot police employees’ personal time.

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Berman is still on the faculty at UBC as a professor with a $400,000 salary, however, and has only resigned from his position as the head of Population and Public Health.

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