Why are masks important?
The use of masks helps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by reducing droplet transmission. As a result, all staff, faculty, students, affiliates, approved guests and visitors, contractors, and vendors are required to wear masks while on campus in all areas, indoors and out.
Are there any exemptions?
Only a few:
- In a private office, when working alone with the door closed.
- In your own residence hall room, or when attending to personal hygiene (masks must be worn in the hallway between your room and the bathroom) .
- When performing specific research techniques that have been detailed in an approved protocol.
- While eating or drinking in approved areas while maintaining physical distance from others
What type of mask can I wear?
Allowable face coverings are defined as those that secure via ear loops or with ties and have a snug fit to the face, over the nose, and under the chin and are multilayered. Disposable and cloth masks that meet these specifications are acceptable.
Face coverings with valves or plastic face shields used alone do not provide protection to the user or to the community, nor do bandanas, scarves, or gaiters; such face coverings are unacceptable and do not meet the requirements of this policy.
With new, more contagious strains of the coronavirus spreading in the U.S., and transmission levels still very high in Massachusetts, some public health experts recommend upgrading from basic cloth or surgical masks to wearing double masks or masks with filters. This is not a requirement at Brandeis, but is an option each individual may want to consider employing for additional protection, especially for those working in a high-traffic environment or for those with underlying health conditions.
Do I have to bring my own mask?
Yes. Unless designated as an essential employee, all community members must provide their own face mask each day they are on campus.
Failure to bring and wear a face may result in being asked to leave campus. Refusal or repeated failures to follow this directive will result in disciplinary action.
What if I have a disability or medical condition?
Community members with a disability or medical condition that requires accommodations for a specific type of mask or face covering should contact the appropriate campus health provider.
For faculty, staff, and affiliates, contact Occupational Health Services (781-736-8757; firstname.lastname@example.org); for students, contact the Brandeis Student Health Center (781-736-3677, email@example.com).
Proper Mask Use and Care Tips
- Wash or sanitize your hands before putting on a mask; wash or sanitize your hands prior to and after removing a mask.
- Wear your mask securely over your nose, mouth, and tucked under your chin, fitting snugly to your face the entire time you are in public. Do not wear your mask on your forehead, under your chin, around your neck, hanging off one ear, or on your elbow.
- Avoid touching the exterior of your mask; wash or sanitize your hands if you do.
- Change or launder face masks if they become soiled, wet, or damaged. Disposable masks must not be used for more than one day and must be discarded after use. Cloth face masks must be laundered after each day of use.
- Continue to adhere to other protective safety measures including physical distancing and frequent handwashing while wearing your mask.