Dear Colleagues, The COVID-19 Task Force had a meeting on Thursday, March 10th. Here are the meeting notes from the Augsburg Staff Union representative.
Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) Updates:
- MDH meetings are now every other week, and this week’s was canceled, so there will be no MDH updates until the week after spring break unless a significant change occurs
- Dashboard updated to align with new CDC community level guidance.
- Augsburg’s on campus case rate remained low.
- Cases in Hennepin County fell below 100 per 100,000 population for the first time since July 2021.
- Hospitalization metrics for both Hennepin and Ramsey counties are also at a low level.
- Visit the CDC Data Tracker for more information:https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#datatracker-home
Lifting indoor mask mandate
- Rebecca John talked about the overview of discussions with the University Council and President’s Leadership Team about the decision to lift the mask mandate. The decision was made based on the current data and will continue to be monitored and reassessed.
- Residence hall guest policy will be lifted in alignment with the mask mandate. Residence life will be sending an announcement that students will be able to now have guests from the community in their residence hall.
- During the task force meeting, it was discussed that we may need to go back to a mask mandate in the future. Augsburg will be continuing to monitor case rates and adjust as needed.
- The question about if staff/faculty/students are allowed to ask others to wear a mask when they are meeting with them was discussed as well. Rebecca John stated that there is no official policy about this, but that we are asking everyone in the Augsburg community to be mindful and respectful of others. It was also suggested that if someone does ask that another person wear a mask when meeting, that the person asking would need to be prepared to provide them with a mask. It was also mentioned that if people would feel more comfortable meeting via Zoom, that is still an option available.
CampusClear data for February
- In the usual semester decline in reporting (peaks first month and then declines until a new term)
- Who is reporting (faculty/staff/student)- the same as last month
Testing and vaccine on campus
- Testing started this week, will resume after spring break
- Vax clinic March 30 and April 20
Covid-19 Policy Survey
There will be no COVID-19 Task Force meeting next week, the week of spring break. We set up a Google Form so Augsburg Staff Union members could state their questions or concerns to be addressed at the meeting. We did not receive any questions this week. Please note: Urgent questions related to COVID-19 should not be submitted via the Google Form, those questions should continue to be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, calling 612-474-3100, and/or by using the Augsburg self-reporting form.
The staff union representative will continue to send weekly updates based on information gathered in the COVID Task Force meetings and questions asked in the google form.