Face covering protocols developed after input from campus focus groups
The CDC advises that one of the best ways to help slow the spread of COVID-19 is by wearing a face covering. Face coverings must be combined with social distancing, hand washing, self-assessments and encouragement to stay home when ill (even with mild symptoms) to have the best opportunity to reduce risk.
Protocols for wearing face coverings on GVSU campuses were developed by the Health Technical Advisory Group of the Incident Management Team through consultations with public health experts, six campus focus groups (three with faculty, two with staff, one with students) and the Senior Leadership Team. The protocols have now been approved by President Philomena V. Mantella.
Going forward, the university requires that face coverings cover the mouth and nose in indoor and outdoor spaces when you are unable to consistently maintain a distance of at least six feet from others, including classrooms and laboratories.
Face coverings are not required in residence halls when in a personal room, suite or apartment; in dining areas when seated and dining; in offices and other areas where six feet of social distancing can be maintained; or outdoors when social distancing is possible.
Those unable to wear a face covering due to a medical condition will be directed to Disability Support Services (DSR). The university will provide two face coverings to each employee and one to each enrolled student.
Compliance will be facilitated primarily through proactive, ongoing education, communication, modeling and reduction of barriers. As part of the education plan, the Division of Student Affairs is working with a group of student leaders to create a culture of safety, wellness, inclusivity, respect and accountability. In addition, a compliance toolkit to support faculty and staff will be available by mid-July.
More information about safety protocols can be found at www.gvsu.edu/lakerstogether.