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    What to know about face coverings when coming back to campus

    December 19, 2020

    Working together will ensure Morehouse’s safe return to campus. Wearing a face covering is a very important part of this process.

    Our Spring 2021 reopening plan outlines how we will help keep the community safe and where and when to wear a face covering. The plan calls for all returning students, faculty, and staff to wear a cloth face mask when traveling across campus, and while in public spaces, inside a building, or whenever around others.

    In short, you should wear a mask at all times, unless you’re in your home or while eating. Face coverings should be worn even if you are practicing social distancing.

    As outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), COVID-19 is spread most frequently through respiratory droplets. Therefore, wearing a cloth face mask is vital in helping to stop the spread of the disease. By wearing a face mask, you are not only protecting yourself, but, more importantly, your fellow men of Morehouse.

    It is a simple step that can prevent you from unwittingly spreading the virus to others, even when you are symptom-free. Here’s what you need to know.

    Secure your facemask properly. Almost a year into the pandemic, this probably feels second nature. But here are the important details to remember: Wash your hands before putting on your face mask. Then, place the covering over your nose and mouth while securing it under your chin. Try to fit it snugly against the sides of your face, and always make sure you can breathe easily.

    Where to get a face mask. Student Services will provide returning students with one washable cloth mask before the start of the Spring 2021 semester as part of a larger kit that will include hand sanitizer as well. More information on pick-up will follow. You may wear you own clean, well-maintained face mask, provided it covers both your nose and your mouth. It is also recommended that you carry at least two clean face masks with you daily. This will ensure that you have a replacement in case your mask becomes unusable during the day.

    Wearing a face mask indoors. It’s simple: Face masks should always be worn in all indoor settings on campus. This includes classrooms and laboratories; common spaces in residence halls and apartment living, like hallways, building entranceways and exits, and shared restrooms; dining halls; and all other College buildings including offices and the library. The only exception to this rule is when you are eating and drinking (when indoor dining is permissible) or when you are in your individual residence.

    Guidance on outdoor wear. If you are holding a meeting or a study group in an outdoor setting, or just talking with friends and colleagues, please note that face masks must be worn while outside. Face masks and physical distancing are not interchangeable. And a face mask must be worn while traveling across campus or exercising outside, whether on or near campus.

    Caring for a face mask. Wash your mask after a day’s use. The virus can live up to seven days on cotton. You can use a washer and dryer to clean your cloth mask. Discard it when it begins to show wear, with holes and rips, or if the straps are loosening or stretched.

    Say something. Everyone in the Morehouse community must work together toward a safe return to campus this Spring. Not only will individuals not wearing face masks be denied entrance to spaces on campus, or asked to leave, they also compromise the health and wellness of the College's employees and students.

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