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AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER SERVING THE GW COMMUNITY SINCE 1904

The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Diversity, equity official to leave GW in July
By Jenna Lee, Assistant News Editor • June 8, 2024

Officials lift indoor mask requirement for fully vaccinated people

Organizers+of+any+meeting+or+gathering+should+avoid+serving+food+where+multiple+hands+touch+the+food%2C+like+bowls+of+chips%2C+and+attendees+should+not+shake+hands%2C+officials+said.
Hatchet File Photo
Organizers of any meeting or gathering should avoid serving food where multiple hands touch the food, like bowls of chips, and attendees should not shake hands, officials said.

Fully vaccinated individuals are no longer required to wear masks at all GW-operated facilities, officials announced Wednesday.

Scott Burnotes, the vice president for safety and facilities, and Ray Lucas, GW’s COVID-19 coordinator, said in an email that more than 70 percent of students, faculty and staff with access to campus are now fully vaccinated, a “milestone” that allows them to lift the indoor mask mandate for fully vaccinated individuals. Administrators announced in April they would require students, faculty and staff to be fully vaccinated by the start of the fall semester.

“While on campus, you may continue to see people wearing masks for a variety of reasons,” Burnotes and Lucas said in the email. “An individual may feel comfortable wearing a mask even if they are vaccinated, they may be wearing a mask to protect family members or friends or they may be exempted from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons.”

D.C. officials lifted their final COVID-19 restrictions Friday as the daily case rate in the District fell to the lowest point since March 22 of last year.

The average number of daily COVID-19 tests administered at GW has declined in recent weeks after many students left campus following the spring semester and officials loosened testing requirements for fully vaccinated students. Officials have yet to report a positive COVID-19 case this month and identified just three positive cases in May out of nearly 9,000 tests, according to GW’s testing dashboard.

Burnotes and Lucas added that masks are still required on public transportation in D.C. as well as in healthcare settings.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is the very best way to protect yourself, and together, we can help keep our community healthy and safe,” they said in the email.

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About the Contributor
Zach Blackburn, Editor in Chief
Zach, a senior majoring in political communication, is the 2023-24 editor in chief of The Hatchet. He previously served as senior news editor and assistant news editor of the Metro beat. He hails from West Columbia, South Carolina.
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