Updated on-campus face covering policy, effective August 17
This message is from HFC President Russell Kavalhuna.
Dear Colleagues and Students,
The Fall semester will begin at HFC on August 26. At that time, about 25% of our classes will be held in-person on our Main and East campuses. Many employees have been returning to campus during July and August, in anticipation of the Fall semester. I have been back on campus for several months, and I look forward to seeing those of you who will be on campus.
During the pandemic, we have followed guidance and requirements from the State of Michigan, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, and the Wayne County Health Department. Guidance from the government and health experts continues to evolve as the pandemic changes. I have heard from many of you about the sometimes difficult process of staying apprised of the changing directives and recommendations.
Our approach and goal at HFC will always be to create a safe environment to deliver our curricula, while also being respectful and welcoming. As our country and region has seen increasing infections of the COVID Delta variant, the CDC recently released updated recommendations for schools, stating that all individuals should wear a face mask in any indoor setting.
In response to these developments, we have gathered input and recommendations from the Return To Campus Core Team, Collective Bargaining Unit Leaders, and employees and students. Due to our concern for safety, we are changing our face-covering policy to address the growing public health concerns.
Face coverings will be required indoors beginning August 17
Beginning Tuesday, August 17, Henry Ford College will require everyone to wear a facemask in all indoor spaces, when social distancing is not possible. Facemasks are required in all on-campus classrooms and labs. If you are alone in an enclosed office setting or a similar place where no other people are within six feet of you for extended periods of time, you will not be required to wear a mask. You will need to put on a facemask when you are no longer in those socially distanced areas, including classrooms and labs. You may briefly remove your mask when necessary to eat or drink.
If forget to bring your facemask, please contact Campus Safety or the Dean’s Office of your HFC school.
This face mask requirement will apply to everyone, regardless of vaccination status.
Public health experts continue to remind us that getting vaccinated is a highly effective way to protect each other and help make our community safer. We recognize that there are differing views on the COVID vaccine. If you are hesitant, please talk to a trusted health care provider.
We encourage you to protect yourself and others by getting vaccinated. Public health experts have stated that the three widely available vaccines are safe and effective. They refer to the growing evidence of reduced infection rates in vaccinated populations, and reduced symptoms if you do contract the disease. Here is more information about how to get vaccinated.
Public health officials say that being vaccinated is becoming even more important due to the emergence of the Delta variant and other highly infectious variants of the COVID virus.
We continue to ask that our community make efforts to social distance where possible. We recommend that you wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer.
Voluntary vaccination reporting for employees
In July, HFC employees were asked to voluntarily report their vaccination status through a web form. This form is not required, but your participation will help us understand more about whether we are approaching a level of greater safety based on increased vaccination percentages. If you are an employee and you have not yet completed the form, please consider doing so.
Daily screening form is required for anyone coming to campus
We continue to require all students and employees to complete the daily health screening form before coming to campus. This will help us be aware of people experiencing COVID symptoms, and it will remind us about the importance of keeping each other safe.
Do not come to campus if you are sick, have been exposed to COVID, or are experiencing any symptoms listed on the form.
Please note that the Welcome Center on campus is not yet fully open to the public. Please do not come to the Welcome Center unless you have an appointment. The Welcome Center teams will start to transition back to campus on an appointment-only basis beginning September 7. Students should call 313-845-9600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an in-person or virtual appointment. Complete information about Welcome Center services is available on our Student Resources website.
The 18-month period of the pandemic continues to bring many changes to our College and our lives. We will continue to monitor best practices. We will stay apprised of updated government and health regulations and recommendations. We will likely make additional changes to our response plans and procedures as we emerge from the pandemic.
I thank you for your patience, care for each other, and support for the safety protocols that will protect our community, while creating a respectful and inclusive campus environment.