Effective March 15, Duke has modified the status of restrictions for the following countries:
- Bangladesh – Travel to the entire country is restricted, meaning undergraduate travel is not permitted unless a petition is approved by the provost; Graduate and professional students must sign a waiver in advance of traveling to the country.
- Guinea – The full-country restriction has been removed, and the restriction now only includes border areas with Sierra Leone, Liberia and the Ivory Coast.
- Kenya – The transit-only restriction (students can only be in that location for 24 hours or less) on Nairobi was lifted, and the restriction now only includes Mombasa and border regions.
- Nepal – The full-country restriction has been removed, but a restriction still exists for the Terai region.
- Peru – The country has been added to the Restricted Regions List for the border area with Colombia.
- Sierra Leone – Travel is now permitted to the country.
The Global Travel Advisory Committee (GTAC) reviewed all destinations on Duke’s Restricted Regions List on March 11. The restriction changes were approved by Provost Sally Kornbluth based on committee recommendations. These changes come as Duke’s peak travel season, from May through August, approaches.
“It’s our responsibility to watch what’s happening in the world because we know our people are heading out to do research and engage in collaborations all over the globe,” said Christy Parrish Michels, senior manager for Global Administrative Policies and Procedures and travel policy coordinator. “It’s important for us to look at these countries now before peak summer travel, which is our busiest time, to raise awareness of the risks that are out there for travelers.”
GTAC also reviewed several countries on its ‘watch list’ that are experiencing shifting security conditions as well as reviewed several petitions from undergraduates who want to travel abroad and need a waiver for an existing restriction.
For travelers in areas where restrictions have been added or modified, Duke will be communicating with those individuals and their programs.
GTAC meets twice a year to conduct an overall review of Duke’s Restricted Regions List and other countries that might be visited by Duke travelers. The committee also provides rapid-response restriction changes in the event that a situation abroad threatens traveler safety, such as the Ebola outbreak in 2014 and the Nepal earthquake in 2015.