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Maintenance workers granted restricted access to residence hall rooms

Building maintenance workers at Central Michigan University are able to enter a residence hall room when no residents are present in order to make repairs, but only during certain timeframes.

“Generally, building maintenance worker employees or their student assistants may enter a room between 9 a.m.-4 p.m.,” University Communications Director Steve Smith said.

The residence hall agreement that all residents sign includes an agreement to allow access to the residence for building maintenance workers. Between the given times for repairs, the workers may enter the residence for the purposes of “repair, replacement or inspection of university property,” Smith said.

Working in pairs, maintenance staff on a repair call usually knock at the door of a residence before going in.

If it appears that no one is in at the time, building maintenance employee Amanda Johnson said, the workers can enter the room to make the necessary repairs. After the job is complete, they are required to leave a note informing residents about the repair.

Policy also requires they lock the door on their way out.

The schedules of maintenance workers are often very full, with around a dozen jobs over the course of a typical week, Johnson said. As a result, it can be difficult for workers to determine a specific time for when they will arrive at a particular residence to make a repair.

The current protocol allows for the flexibility they need to complete repairs in a timely manner. The workers are also authorized to enter any residence in the case of an emergency, Smith said.

When a student reports a needed repair at the front desk of the residence hall, it is the responsibility of the student to tell the other residents of the room to expect the arrival of maintenance workers.

Sault Ste. Marie sophomore Kate Teneyck said a more formal system for alerting students about repairs and maintenance workers could be beneficial to residents.

“Since everyone’s in the system, it would make sense to shoot all the residents an email, telling them when the workers will show up,” Teneyck said. “That way, one of the students can be there to let them in.”

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