It’s incremental progress, I guess. The University of Minnesota will require masking in the Fall — actually, as of now.
The Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus appears to be much more easily transmitted, resulting in new CDC guidance on masking announced this week. This guidance recommends that in any county where the COVID transmission rate is shown to be substantial or high, individuals wear facial coverings while indoors, whether vaccinated or not.
Relying on this guidance and with the advice of our University public health experts, effective tomorrow, August 3, we are reinstituting the requirement that all students, staff, faculty, contractors, and visitors to our campuses, offices, and facilities, statewide, wear facial coverings while indoors, regardless of your vaccination status. Voluntary mask wearing today, August 2, is encouraged. Masks or facial coverings are not required outdoors.
Wearing a mask or facial covering indoors has been shown to slow the transmission of COVID-19 and, as we saw as a nation, virtually eliminate other airborne illnesses like the flu. This requirement applies to all of our campuses and offices statewide, whether a given location is in a substantial or high transmission county or not.
I hope they don’t expect me to be grateful. Dragging their feet about doing the basic, obvious things and then finally taking a small step in the right direction does not earn my praise. Now do a vaccine requirement next.