As of April 27, President Biden released some new, uplifting guidelines regarding mask-wearing: “If you’re fully vaccinated, and you’re outdoors … you no longer need to wear a mask.” To supplement this, the CDC released a chart detailing when and where people need to wear masks, vaccinated and unvaccinated alike. However, despite both of these, Bellevue College is requiring masks on campus regardless of vaccination status.
On May 22, Dennis Curran, the Vice President of Administrative Services at Bellevue College, said, “BC’s mask-wearing policy has not changed. All students, faculty, staff and visitors must continue to wear a mask while on campus. The only exceptions are while eating, drinking, or working alone.” Bellevue College says requiring proof of vaccination lacks feasibility due to privacy, timeliness, paperwork and vaccination availability, so having everyone wear a mask keeps everyone safe.
Safety is especially important for those who are immunocompromised. It is estimated that 3-5% of the United States population is immunocompromised, and the vaccine has not proven effective in many of them. Immunosuppressed people in general, especially people who have undergone organ transplants, dialysis, or have cancer (especially leukemia) may not see great results in immunity with the COVID-19 vaccines. Because of this, it is imperative for people with stronger immune systems, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, to wear masks and minimize their potential exposure to COVID.
In addition to the mask requirement, anyone going on campus still must fill out the daily check-in, which has now been modified to input the specific date people plan to come to campus. If you feel sick or have been exposed to COVID, you should not come to campus.
To stay up-to-date on Bellevue College’s mask and COVID-related policies, you can check this page.