By Editor in Chief, Kelsey Braun ‘22
On Tuesday, St. John Fisher College announced a face covering policy that will require students, employees, and visitors to wear a mask in public indoor spaces.
According to an email sent to the campus community, the change — which went into effect on Wednesday — comes after Monroe County recommended the change.
Earlier Monday, Monroe County Executive Adam Bello and Dr. Mendoza announced a new recommendation that all residents, vaccinated and unvaccinated, begin wearing masks in all public indoor facilities, consistent with current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On Sunday, the CDC listed Monroe County with “substantial” COVID-19 transmission. The CDC’s reporting comes days after it recommended areas with “substantial” and “high” transmission mask up indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Areas with “substantial” transmission, according to the CDC, record 50 to 99 cases per week, per 100,000. CDC data Sunday showed Monroe County at 50.02 per 100,000 from Sunday, July 25 to Saturday, July 31.
Earlier this year, the college announced that everyone returning to campus this fall would be required to get a vaccination.
According to the email from the school, vaccines have proven to decrease an individuals chance of becoming seriously ill with COVID-19, but they do not prevent the spread of the virus.
“While Fisher is a fully vaccinated community, following the CDC’s recommendation to wear a face covering indoors adds another layer of protection to members of our campus community and another barrier to community transmission,” officials said in a statement.
Exceptions to the policy include:
- When a person is outside
- When a person is alone in an office or breakroom
- When a student is alone or with their roommate in their residence hall room
- When eating and drinking on campus
What Remains the Same
- Social distancing is not required for fully vaccinated individuals, with the exception of the College’s Health and Wellness Center
- Campus lab capacity is not impacted
- Office capacity is not impacted
- Classroom capacity is not impacted
- In-person meetings are permitted (if held indoors, individuals must adhere to face covering policy)
“We will continue to monitor county transmission rate trends and make decisions based on current data and guidelines from both the CDC and Monroe County. “