Summary Update on COVID-19-related Developments
Date: March 5, 2022
To: The NYU Community
From: Katherine Fleming, Provost; Martin Dorph, Exec. Vice President; and Dr. Carlo Ciotoli, Vice President for Campus Health
The Evolving Context for Evaluating COVID-19 Related Safety and Health Protocols
As the recent guidance from the CDC demonstrates, over the course of the pandemic, our understanding of COVID-19 has matured, and the metrics we use to evaluate community health—and appropriate safety measures—have evolved along with it. Today, policy-making and decision-making takes careful account of hospital admissions and hospital beds being used—both of which have largely been mitigated by vaccination. It is an evaluative approach that has allowed Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams in recent days to lift indoor mask mandates and vaccination checks, and has enabled us to lift some restrictions on our campus as well.
Expanded Indoor Eating Opportunities, with Certain Provisos
Apropos of the foregoing: having re-opened the dining facilities for regular indoor eating about a month ago, we will now permit—effective March 7—indoor eating in additional select settings. So, for instance, beginning next Monday, food can be served at student club meetings.
However, many people still feel uneasy about having others around them eating. So we will distinguish between two types of settings. We will not allow eating or drinking in any setting where attendance is required, such as classes or faculty meetings, so that no one who feels uneasy about others eating near them, is ever forced to encounter that. But indoor eating will be permitted in those settings where attendance is optional, so that someone who feels uneasy about others eating near them can simply opt out of those situations.
Examples of settings or activities in which eating and drinking is not permitted:
- Classrooms or other instructional spaces
- Certain designated study spaces
- Meetings, huddles, or events in which in-person participation is obligatory
- Workplaces, which will follow existing workplace eating guidelines.
Please note: a number of departments, including the catering service provided by Chartwells—the University’s food service provider—may require a little additional time to resume providing food for events; those arranging food for events should be mindful of this.
NYU’s Mask-Wearing Rules Will Remain in Place Until After Spring Break
Notwithstanding the Governor’s and Mayor’s recent announcements about easing mask requirements, NYU will keep its mask-wearing requirements in place until the University has a chance to evaluate conditions following spring break.