BREAKING: University reinstates indoor mask requirement
This update is in accordance with Mayor Bowser’s new indoor mask mandate
In a Friday morning email to the American University community, the University updated its mask requirements, requiring anyone present in University buildings or facilities to wear masks while indoors beginning July 31.
This update is in accordance with Mayor Bowser’s mask reinstatement order, which also goes into effect July 31. The policy requires everyone above the age of 2 to wear a mask indoors regardless of vaccination status in the District. This comes amid a rise in COVID-19 cases and the spread of the Delta variant in the region.
“Cases in the District have risen five-fold in recent weeks,” Vice President of Campus Life and Inclusive Excellence Fanta Aw wrote in the email. “As stated in the Mayor’s Order, vaccination remains the most important tool in fighting COVID-19. Masks add another layer of protection.”
This reverses some of the recent updates that AU made to its indoor mask policies. On June 7, AU announced that masks were not required indoors in a gathering of less than 15 people. With this current update, masks will now be required in any sort of inside gathering no matter how large or small.
However, Aw wrote that people are still not required to wear masks if they are eating or alone in an office or residence hall.
There were no updates made to the outdoor mask requirements. The current guidelines say that groups of over 25 people should be masked.
Aw wrote that they will continue to update their health and safety protocols as the University returns to in-person operations in the fall.