LAKERS TOGETHER: Find out information about COVID-19
Face Covering Policy
Updated January 14, 2022
The need to wear a face covering is tied to the university's alert level system. GVSU is currently at Alert Level 3, which requires face coverings in all indoor spaces.
Face coverings are required in all indoor spaces, with the following exceptions:
Face coverings are not required in work areas not open to the public where 6 feet of social distance is consistently maintained. Within office suites, only reception areas are considered open to the public.
Under Alert Levels 2 and above, exceptions include:
- Private offices of faculty and staff (although faculty and staff can require in these offices);
- For students, their assigned room, suite, or apartment on campus, only when you or your roommates are present;
- In dining areas, while eating and drinking.
- In other public indoor locations, face coverings may be removed briefly for eating and drinking.
Under Alert Level 1, exceptions include:
- All exceptions listed for Alert Level 2 and above;
- Faculty and staff in meetings.
Under Alert Level 0, face coverings not required. Faculty and staff can require in their private offices.
Face coverings are not required outdoors, except under Level 4.
Any member of the GVSU community may choose to wear a face covering where one is not required on campus and will be supported by all Lakers for doing so.
Face coverings must cover the mouth and nose, and fit snugly against the sides of the face. A face covering is defined as having two layers of tightly woven, washable and breathable fabric:
Faculty, staff, and students representing the university at off-campus locations should follow the face covering policies at the host location.
In accordance with federal law, riders and bus operators on The Rapid bus system are required to wear a mask.
Changes to the GVSU face covering policy will be considered based on CDC guidance and county, state (MDHHS/MIOSHA) and federal requirements.
Grand Valley has obtained 10,000 KN95 masks and 10,000 medical procedure (ASTM 1) masks for campus community members who wish to wear these. Departments can order these masks through the normal PPE requisition process through Facilities Services. More masks are on order and expected soon. We will do everything possible to ensure adequate mask availability despite supply chain pressure.
Students can pick up these types of masks at the following locations beginning Friday, January 14, at 10 a.m. Supplies will be replenished each weekday.
Allendale Campus: Recreation Center, Mary Idema Pew Library, Kirkhof Center;
Pew Grand Rapids Campus: Eberhard Center, parking services desk.
Nearly 200,000 non-medical three-ply disposable masks continue to be available (these are the masks that have been supplied since the pandemic began). For most people on campus, these masks are sufficient, as are the washable cloth masks (two-ply).
Important mask details:
• A KN95 improperly worn is not safer than a cloth mask worn properly.
• A disposable three-ply mask worn with a two-ply cloth mask is equivalent to a KN95 mask for protection.
• Some people will not tolerate a KN95 mask and find it difficult to breathe, and might relax their mask. They may find the double-mask option more tolerable.
• A clean KN95 that is properly cared for should last for five days.
- Those unable to wear a face covering due to a medical condition should contact Disability Support Resources (DSR).
- Students, faculty and staff with weakened immune systems should discuss their activities and precautions they need to take to prevent COVID-19 with their health care providers. Currently, the CDC recommends continued masking and physical distancing for individuals with weakened immune systems.
- Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to wear masks or avoid crowded, outdoor events, like a live performance, parade, or sports event that might carry higher risk of COVID-19 transmission especially among unvaccinated individuals.
- Faculty, staff and students are responsible for laundering their face coverings and properly disposing of one-time use masks
- Compliance is facilitated primarily through proactive, ongoing education, communication, modeling and reduction of barriers.
- A toolkit which includes videos and articles about face coverings, and frequently asked questions is available.
- These protocols are administered by the Virus Action Team through consultations with public health experts and the Senior Leadership Team.