University News

WIU Updates & Protocols: Phase 5 Restore Illinois

June 11, 2021


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From: WIU Office of Risk Management

As we anticipate the State of Illinois moving into Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois Reopening Plan on Friday, June 11, Western Illinois University continues to review and evaluate how the University will be impacted. While we know our students, faculty and staff are eager to return to normal operations, it is essential to keep in mind that being an institution of higher education comes with its own unique set of circumstances. As University administration continues to review the data and information related to the pandemic, a comprehensive update to the Protect the ‘Necks plan will be made available in the coming weeks. The following adjustments and changes will take effect Monday, June 14.

Reopening of Outdoor Campus Facilities

• Reopening of Hanson Field and outdoor basketball/tennis courts.
Face Covering Guidelines

Instructional and clinical spaces

• Summer in-person classes will continue to require students and faculty to wear face coverings and practice social distancing during the class period. The University is still considering what this new guidance will mean for Fall 2021 classes.

Public indoor spaces (lobbies, open spaces, walkways and organized events)

• Face coverings are required regardless of vaccination status.

Private or semi-private environments (offices, private meeting spaces, internal department conference rooms, and break rooms)

• Face coverings are optional for individuals who are fully vaccinated.
• Face coverings are required for individuals who are not fully vaccinated (with the exception of those in an individual workspace where distancing can be maintained).
• In all other instances, face coverings are required for those not fully vaccinated
• The use of face coverings should not be interpreted as vaccinated vs. non-vaccinated.

Compliance is based upon the honor system. Supervisors may ask employees to voluntarily disclose their vaccination status or show proof of vaccination when it is relevant to determining the need for the need for face coverings in offices and meetings.

Employees are not required to share their vaccination status with a supervisor. If an employee does not choose to share their status, they will need to follow the protocols outlined above for individuals who are not fully vaccinated.

Residence Halls & Dining Centers

• Face coverings are optional within a private residence hall room.
• Face coverings are optional when seated and eating/drinking in a University dining facility or the University Union.

Campus Recreation

• Face coverings are optional within designated areas in the Student Recreation Center and athletic training facilities.

Outdoor spaces

• Face coverings are optional for individuals who are fully vaccinated.
• Face coverings are optional for individuals who are not fully vaccinated if proper social distancing can be/is maintained.
• The use of face coverings should not be interpreted as vaccinated vs. non-vaccinated.

GoWest Buses and other public transportation

• Face coverings are required regardless of vaccination status

Distancing Guidelines: Indoor and outdoor spaces (non-clinical and non-instructional)

• Distancing is optional for individuals who are fully vaccinated. Seating that is positioned for appropriate physical distancing should not be moved or adjusted.
• Social distancing is required for those individuals who are not fully vaccinated.
• Distancing behaviors should not be interpreted as vaccinated vs. non-vaccinated.

COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics

Western Illinois University strongly encourages all members of the University community to get vaccinated. Getting vaccinated will allow the University to return to normal operations at a faster pace. The following free COVID-19 vaccine clinics are available:

• McDonough County: https://getyourcovidshot.com/vaccine-calendar
• Rock Island County: https://richd.org/
Vaccines.gov - Find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you
• Individuals are also encouraged to visit their local Hy-Vee, CVS, Walgreens, Wal-Mart, or pharmacy for information regarding COVID-19 vaccinations.

COVID-19 Testing Clinics

COVID-19 summer test clinics on the Macomb campus will be held from 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays through Thursday, Aug. 12 in the University Union Sandburg Lounge.

The CRL saliva test kits will continue to be used on the WIU-QC campus. These can be picked up and returned in Riverfront Hall daily from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday.

The University encourages anyone who is not vaccinated to test at least (1) time a week.

Gathering Guidelines

In an effort to continue to mitigate the possible spread of COVID-19 on Western Illinois University's campuses, the following gathering guidelines will remain in place until further notice.

• Meetings: 100% capacity of room at six-foot distancing between individuals.
• Recreation - Indoor: 75% capacity
• Recreation - Outdoor: Maximum groups of 100
• Social Events - Indoors: Maximum groups of 300
• Social Events - Outdoors: Maximum groups of 500
• Spectator Events (ticketed & seated): 75% capacity
• Theaters & Performing Arts: 75% capacity

• All events and activities should encourage participants to be fully vaccinated. It is recommended that on invitations, advertisements, etc…related to the event that the statement "participants are encouraged to be vaccinated" should appear.
• Event coordinators should not ask if a participant is vaccinated or use vaccination status to accept or deny entry.
• Face covering guidelines must be followed depending on event/activity. Anyone should feel comfortable wearing a mask at any time.
• Event coordinators should remember that some members of the University community remain hesitant to participant in face-to-face/in-person activities and events. When applicable/feasible, a virtual component is encouraged.
• Compliance is based upon the honor system.

Self-Check

All individuals who are on either University campus are required to complete the WIU Self Check at https://www.wiu.edu/selfcheck/ each day before arriving on the Macomb or Quad Cities campuses. A kiosk location is available inside the Office of Public Safety located in Mowbray Hall for individuals needing a thermometer or computer access.

We are at a critical period of the COVID-19 pandemic and we must demonstrate our commitment to one another by being honest and compassionate. Thank you for continuing to make decisions that maximize the safety of WIU Campus Community.

Visit wiu.edu/coronavirus for more information.

Posted By: WIU News (U-Relations@wiu.edu)
Office of University Relations