November 16, 2021
Although Stanislaus County has lifted the indoor mask order, the Yosemite Community College District is still requiring masks to be worn indoors at MJC, CC and Central Services.
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released an update on November 9, 2021, requiring all institutions of higher education (IHE) to comply with current CDPH masking guidance for all unvaccinated students, staff, and faculty. Currently, the District does not yet track vaccination status for students, staff, and faculty, so the safest course of action is to continue to require the use of masks indoors for all individuals.
The California Department of Public Health states the following in its guidance for the use of masks: “To achieve universal masking in indoor public settings, we are recommending that fully vaccinated people also mask in indoor public settings across California. This adds an extra precautionary measure for all to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, especially in communities currently seeing the highest transmission rates. Local health jurisdictions may be more restrictive than this guidance.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states the following in their November 4, 2021, update: “For IHEs where not everyone is fully vaccinated, CDC recommends universal masking indoors in public for all person who are unvaccinated regardless of level of community transmission, and universal masking indoors in public for all persons (fully vaccinated and not fully vaccinated) in areas of substantial or high transmission.” The community transmission in Stanislaus and Tuolumne counties continue to be high per the CDC COVID Data Tracker.
Since we haven’t started mass testing of everyone, continuing to wear masks indoors provides an extra layer of safety for all students, staff and faculty. This is how, in the meantime, we can protect each other, and contribute to each other’s continued well-being. Masks, including KN95 masks, are available for your use. Your department should have these supplies, if not, please notify Facilities & Operations.
I appreciate your understanding and patience as we continue to evaluate COVID related practices in the District. In the coming weeks, the Emergency Operations Center of the YCCD will provide more updates.
Thank you, and stay well –
Henry Yong, Yosemite Community College District Chancellor