Face Coverings

Mason has updated its face covering policy to help our community be safer. Everyone, even if you're vaccinated, must wear a mask when you're inside a Mason building or vehicle.

The university can provide face coverings to employees and students.

  • Employees should contact Environmental Health and Safety to request a face covering.
  • Students can go to the Student Involvement Office in the HUB, Suite 2300, or to the Information Desk in SUB 1 to get a mask.

Masks are also available for purchase in Mason Bookstores and in vending machines on our campuses.

Mason uses a tiered color-coded system to communicate mask requirements for vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals. Please refer to the table below for guidance. Face Covering Levels may change based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Virginia Department of Health (VDH), Department of Labor and Industry, and local health department guidelines. When changes to Mason’s Face Covering Levels are made, changes will be announced to the university community via email and updated here.

Mason’s current Face Covering Level is: ORANGE

Face Covering Level

Population

Face Covering Requirements

I-Red

Unvaccinated AND vaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

· Indoors in all University Facilities (i.e. indoor or enclosed spaces including buildings and vehicles)

· Outdoors at Events or where physical distancing cannot be maintained

· Traveling to/from sites off University Property for work or study if in a vehicle with other individuals

II-Orange 

Unvaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

· Indoors in all University Facilities (i.e. indoor or enclosed spaces including buildings and vehicles)

· Outdoors at Events or where physical distancing cannot be maintained

· Traveling to/from sites off University Property for work or study if in a vehicle with other individuals

 

Vaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

· Indoors in all University Facilities (i.e. indoor or enclosed spaces including buildings and vehicles)

· Traveling to/from sites off University Property for work or study if in a vehicle with other individuals

· Not required outdoors

III-Yellow

Unvaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

· Indoors in all University Facilities (i.e. indoor or enclosed spaces including buildings and vehicles)

· Outdoors at Events or where physical distancing cannot be maintained

· Traveling to/from sites off University Property for work or study if in a vehicle with other individuals

 

Vaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

Face coverings are required only:

· In health care facilities or designated waiting spaces for health care patients (e.g., Student Health Services, COVID testing sites, Intercollegiate Athletics training and medical facilities, Peterson Population Health Center)

· In all environments offering programs for minors (e.g. Child Development Center, camps or youth programs)

· In University owned or operated mass or public transit vehicles when others are present (e.g., Mason shuttle, van pool vehicles, university owned vehicles with multiple passengers)

IV-Green

Unvaccinated AND vaccinated students, faculty, staff, contractors, and visitors

· Face Coverings not required. 

Guidelines include:

  • Everyone, even those who are fully vaccinated, must wear a face covering when inside university property (buildings and vehicles). If you're unvaccinated, you must wear a mask outside, as well, when at an event or if physical distancing can't be maintained.
  • Wear a mask consistently and correctly when:
    • In university facilities (indoor or enclosed space).
    • Outside on university property if you are not fully vaccinated.
    • Attending an event.
    • Traveling to/from sites off university property for work or study if in a vehicle with other individuals.
  • Follow CDC guidance and University Policy 1415 when choosing a mask and following guidance on when to wear it.
  • Don’t share face coverings.

Under Policy 1415, exceptions to face covering requirements include when:

  • Eating or drinking.
  • Communicating with a person who is deaf or hard of hearing via lip reading.
  • Someone gets an accommodation from the appropriate Mason office because of a disability.
    • Students request an accommodation through Disability Services (703-993-2474). If approved, they'll get an accommodation letter, and Disability Services will send a notification email to their in-person instructors. Faculty or staff can also call Disability Services during business hours to verify the accommodation if a student doesn't have their letter. 
    • Faculty, staff, and volunteers should contact Human Resources and Payroll to work with Employee Relations at 703-993-3878. Employees of contractors should work with their employer regarding accommodations.
  • Someone experiences significant trouble breathing, or is unconscious or incapacitated.
  • Someone needing university or medical services.
  • In a resident’s assigned space (no guests), in communal residence hall bathrooms when conducting personal grooming or hygiene and when eating, drinking, or sleeping.
  • Alone in a private, enclosed space (e.g., an individual’s office, private rehearsal space).
  • When swimming or participating in water-based recreational or athletic activities.
  • Actively engaging in required skills instruction or intra-squad scrimmages as part of an approved and sanctioned Intercollegiate Athletics team practice or when actively playing in an NCAA sanctioned athletic competition.
  • Participating in a religious ritual.
  • When participating in a performing art that requires the use of the mouth or unrestricted breathing (e.g., playing a wind instrument, singing, acting, or dance) as part of a Mason-sanctioned performance, or as part of a group rehearsal in a performance space. Masks (or singing masks) and/or wind instrument bell covers are required for classrooms, practice rooms, or other non-performance spaces where several people are present.  (A singer’s mask is a reusable face covering that helps to contain droplets while creating additional space around the mouth to enable the user to sing comfortably.)

People with weakened immune systems (regardless of vaccination status) should talk to their health care providers about face coverings and avoiding exposure risks.

University Policy 1415 COVID Public Health and Safety Precautions – Face Coverings establishes Mason requirements for wearing face coverings.

All faculty, staff, students, contractors, employees of contractors, visitors and any other individual on university property age 2 or older must follow Policy 1415 and CDC guidance for face coverings while on University Property.