CAS Campus Mask-Optional Policy Effective April 2
The State of Oregon lifted the statewide indoor mask mandate on March 12, but we maintained the indoor mask requirement on the CAS campus for a longer period of time due to a temporary uptick in cases leading into spring break. Our decision to move to a mask-optional policy now is informed by the low number of cases on campus following the break, as well as the low number of cases in the surrounding community. Residential students were required to undergo two COVID tests, 72 hours apart, upon return from break. So far this week, the positivity rate for submitted test results is less than 1%.
Masks will remain required:
For anybody who has been exposed as a close contact of a person with COVID within the last ten days.
For anybody who has tested positive for COVID in the last ten days.
Based on state and federal guidance, in health and wellness services offices and on the Pio Express and other public transportation.
In addition, we encourage anyone who wants or needs to maintain a high level of protection to continue masking based on their own needs and judgment. For members of our community who are themselves vulnerable or live with people vulnerable to severe illness, proper masking is an essential way to minimize the risk of transmission.
Masks may continue to be required in certain additional situations on campus. This may include:
Gatherings and classrooms where sustained and close physical contact is likely.
Indoor settings where there is a significant likelihood of close contact with high-risk individuals.
Other situations that present heightened risks.
Places where mask-wearing continues to be required, such as particular classes or labs, will be clearly communicated by the relevant dean, vice president, office, or faculty member. Otherwise, masking will be optional. It is advisable that you continue to carry a mask with you on campus. Masks will continue to be available in various locations on campus and can also be obtained by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. Surgical or cloth masks are generally satisfactory for compliance with such requirements, although KN95 or equivalent masks remain more effective.
Each person should consider their own risk factors to determine the degree to which masking remains part of their individual COVID-19 protective practices. It is our hope that by transitioning to mask-optional everyone will feel comfortable making their individual choice while keeping the wellbeing of our community in mind — and trusting that others are doing the same. It is important that we all respect and support the decisions made by each other in this regard.