When the CDC released their updated guidance last month, many people read the first sentence that if you’re vaccinated you can be mask-free. In some instances that might be true, but many people didn’t keep reading.
The new guidance – which is based on the latest science – includes recommendations for how and when a fully vaccinated individual can visit with other people who are fully vaccinated and with other people who are not vaccinated.
The CDC recommends that fully vaccinated people continue to wear masks and stay at least 6 feet away from people you don’t live with – regardless if you’re in public, around vaccinated or unvaccinated people from multiple households.
That language describes the member experience at BAS. And hopefully as more people are vaccinated the CDC will loosen the guidelines more, allowing a return to pre-COVID days.
Reopen. BA Seniors will reopen on April 12 with limited programs being offered. We will continue to grow, add and enhance the program offerings in the weeks to come as COVID infections go down, more people are vaccinated and activity leaders/volunteers return.
Vaccinations. Although we strongly encourage all members and volunteers to be vaccinated, we will not require members to be vaccinated for them to return to the Center.
Face coverings. Members will wear a mask upon entering the Center, continue through their activity/program and as exiting the building. The Board agrees with the CDC and they stand behind the science that helps the CDC shape policy. In turn, that shapes our policy.
Risk Assessment. The Board will utilize the color coded county-by-county risk assessment for guidance provided by the Oklahoma State Department of Health to determine whether the Center remains open offering in person activities adding that if Broken Arrow zip codes remain in the yellow category as reflected in Tulsa Health Department data, indicating low risk, the Center may remain open, and if the guidance escalates to the orange category or above, the board will evaluate whether the Center remains open.
Please don’t get sent to the principal’s office. The Board developed a warning letter to hand to members listing consequences if the safety protocols are not followed as well as a second letter to be delivered to members who continue to fail to adhere to safety protocols that suspends membership for a period of 60 days. The rules and policies are in place for everyone to follow. Please remember that this isn’t forever – it is for today and tomorrow.
When can we all return to business as usual? Some people say “right this minute.” Other say, “Soon.” Still others say “never.” I prefer, “We don’t know.” More importantly, I don’t anyone really knows. The pandemic appears to be moving in the right direction. Infections going down and vaccinated people going up. The most knowledgeable people on the planet – the people who we look to for advice and counsel are in a lot of ways making educated guesses. But their educated guesses are better than my uneducated guesses.