2022 SU General Election Full Supplement

Door holding regulations to be introduced

By Fabian Mayer, November 27 2014 — 

The University of Calgary is planning to introduce guidelines governing door etiquette after a student was involved in an accident she claims was caused by excessive door holding.

“I was on my way from the TFDL to MacHall when a guy walking at least 25 feet in front of me decided to hold the door open for me,” said fifth-year nursing major Jessica Stevens.

While Stevens believes the student’s gesture was motivated by good intentions, it ended in a trip to the hospital.

“I felt like I had no choice but to pick up my pace so he wouldn’t be standing there holding the door forever,” Stevens said. “I took a couple of faster steps. Next thing I knew, I slipped and bruised my tailbone.”

Stevens believes that she wouldn’t have fallen without the pressure of getting to the door faster.

“I’m sure this happens to a lot of people every winter. It’s time the university did something about it,” she said.

U of C administration said it is considering Stevens’ suggestion.

“Our top priority here is ensuring the safety of our students. If this excessive door holding is a real problem, we may need to take steps to deal with it,” said Hannah Wright, vice-provost safety and security.

Ideas on how to change the norms around door holding were discussed at a town hall this past week. Discussion centered on how to ensure students don’t hold the door for people that are too far behind them. Administration suggested painting a line about 10 feet in front of every door on campus.

“This way when people look back to decide whether to hold the door they can simply check whether the person has crossed the line or not,” Wright said.

The student who brought the issue to the university’s attention favours a different approach. She’s been using an innovative new tactic ever since the accident.

“Every time somebody holds the door for me when I am too far away, I slow down and give them my best death glare,” Stevens said. “If everybody used my strategy, people would start to understand pretty quickly when it’s appropriate to hold a door.”

Hiring | Staff | Advertising | Contact | PDF version | Archive | Volunteer | SU

The Gauntlet