Letters to the UMB Community

Revision to UMB Face Covering Policy

August 05, 2021

Dear UMB community,
Since I last wrote to you about the Delta variant, we have seen an increase in the level of COVID-19 transmission in our surrounding community. The elevated rate of community transmission requires that we take steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). In alignment with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance that masks be worn in areas of substantial or high transmission, effective Friday, Aug. 6, UMB will require that all people, regardless of vaccination status, wear masks in public indoor settings.
  • Everyone, regardless of vaccination status, must wear a mask in public indoor settings.
  • Everyone, regardless of vaccination status, must wear a mask on UMB buses or shuttles.
  • People may remove their masks when they are inside an office, laboratory, or study area, as long as they are by themselves.
  • Fully vaccinated people may remove their face covering when seated in a cubicle in accordance with the face covering policy.
  • Fully vaccinated lecturers have the option to remove their masks while lecturing as long as 6 feet of physical distance is between them and their audience.
  • Masks are not required when people are outdoors, except for at gatherings where attendees will be in fixed seating for more than 15 minutes without 6 feet of physical distancing.
  • Physical distancing is encouraged when feasible.
I know that there is some concern about how the Delta variant could impact our plans for the fall semester. I want to assure you that I remain committed to a vibrant and meaningful in-person environment for the fall semester and at this time do not plan to reduce campus operations.
As always, I want to remind you to not come to campus if you are feeling ill — whether or not it is COVID-19 related.  If you haven't already, please get vaccinated against COVID-19 to lessen your chance of serious illness or death. All on-campus UMB students, faculty, and staff are expected to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, effective Aug. 16, 2021.
Although returning to mask-wearing may be frustrating, I remain optimistic about our progress in the fight against COVID-19. This disease has taught us that we must be flexible and work together to keep UMB and our friends, family, and community safe.
Our individual and collective actions matter — thank you for doing your part to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Please refer to the FAQ, which will be updated with further guidance as it becomes available.
Bruce E. Jarrell, MD, FACS

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