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UCLA to reinstate indoor masking regulations through end of quarter

(Ashley Kenney/Photo editor)

A mask, UCLA COVID-19 PCR test, graduation cap and tassel sit on a table. UCLA reinstated masking regulations in a campuswide email Thursday after experiencing nearly 870 new cases in the past week. (Ashley Kenney/Photo editor)

This post was updated May 30 at 10:28 p.m.

UCLA announced in a campuswide email Thursday that it will reinstate universal indoor masking regulations effective Friday. 

The reinstated guidelines will continue through the end of the quarter on June 15 and could be further extended, according to the announcement. The change comes after UCLA recorded nearly 870 new COVID-19 cases in the past week, reflective of a countywide trend of rising infections. 

Weekly testing and daily symptom monitoring will also continue to be required through June 15. Food and drink at indoor events are also strongly discouraged and, if organizers plan to serve food and drink, they should reserve a larger-capacity room, according to the updated guidelines. Organizers are also recommended to check that individuals are up to date on vaccinations and can socially distance themselves while eating and drinking. 

Graduates and attendees at indoor commencement ceremonies will also be required to wear a mask. Commencement speakers may remove masks while speaking on stage, and graduates may unmask while walking across the stage and being photographed on or adjacent to the stage. 

The university lifted indoor masking regulations in the third week of spring quarter, citing improving COVID-19 trends across UCLA. Currently, the campus’s weekly COVID-19 test positivity rate has remained at or above 2% for over three weeks, compared to less than 1% in March, according to the UCLA COVID-19 dashboard.  

The announcement said the universal mask mandate does not apply to leased and non-UCLA-owned buildings, performing arts rehearsals and performances, indoor dining areas, and while an individual is alone in a room. However, the administration highly recommends masks while indoors in off-campus settings. 

Individuals who work in health care settings must continue to follow COVID-19 protocols in line with UCLA Health guidance, including masking indoors. 

“It is important for us to respond to the current trends so that we can reduce the risk of infection without disruption to in-person learning and campus activities, including commencement celebrations,” the email read.

Aditi Kumar
Science and Health editor

Li is the 2021-2022 science and health editor. She was previously a contributor for the science and health beat. She is also a third-year human biology and society student at UCLA who enjoys writing about research and public health.

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