Open Letter from Parents & Community Requesting ICCSD Mask Mandate

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Open Letter from Parents & Community Requesting ICCSD Mask Mandate

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Jonna Higgins-Freese started this petition to Iowa City Community School District Board

Open Letter to the Iowa City Community School District Board

August 11, 2021


Dear Members of the Iowa City Community School District Board


We, the undersigned, demand that the Iowa City Community School District board  make masks mandatory while indoors at all Iowa City Community School District facilities for fall 2021.


The science is clear:

* Masks work when everyone wears them [1-3].

* Masks are safe for adults and children over two [4-6].

* Universal masking in schools is recommended by the AAP, CDC, and the WHO [7-10].


The delta variant is far more transmissible than previous variants, fueling surging case numbers across age groups:

* Studies suggest decreased protection against infection with vaccines [11-12]. 

* Studies suggest that vaccinated adults with breakthrough infections transmit delta as easily as do the unvaccinated [13-14].

* Data suggests that children are contracting the delta variant and getting seriously ill or dying [15-17].


Critically, COVID-19 mitigation measures are a health equity issue!

* Children under 12, more than half of our students, cannot get vaccinated.

* Children over 12 must rely on caregivers to make safe choices, giving our pediatric population no agency over their own health..

* Some students and staff members cannot get vaccinated or have a family member who cannot get vaccinated due to medical conditions.

* Some students and staff have or have a family member that has a compromised or suppressed immune system that puts them at greater risk from COVID-19 and makes vaccines less effective for them [18].

* Refusing to consider these people and their safety is an issue of ageism and ableism [19].


Now is the time to act with courage and ethics. It is up to you to show our students that science speaks louder than threats, that safety matters more than politics, and that their lives matter. School districts in Dallas, Texas and Gainesville, Florida have just adopted mask mandates in the face of legislation or orders preventing them, and those decisions have been upheld in Texas courts. Make masks mandatory for all students, faculty, staff, and visitors in Iowa City Community School District Public Schools for fall 2021.


Sincerely,

Matt Arnold

Will Brown

Brook Easton

Eric Higgins-Freese

Jonna Higgins-Freese

Melanie Rainbow-Harel, LMSW

On behalf of signatories below

REFERENCES

[1] https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2?fbclid=IwAR1WI0_kJaGqvvm0VvRV1AEitGdgOJ0kAt52NB-Xv_AUY0Ce_C558kuzcbQ

[2] https://www.pnas.org/content/118/4/e2014564118?fbclid=IwAR0acQLrK5uzFbEsJE5E7lDgkcBVPB7b_2CjhPAy2yG2jDzEJ5H5ekpwVIk

[3] https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/science/science-briefs/masking-science-sars-cov2.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fmore%2Fmasking-science-sars-cov2.html

[4] https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m1435

[5] https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2776928

[6] https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-guidance.html

[7] https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/index.html

[8] https://services.aap.org/en/news-room/news-releases/aap/2021/american-academy-of-pediatrics-updates-recommendations-for-opening-schools-in-fall-2021/

[9] https://apnews.com/article/virus-outbreak-us-news-health-lifestyle-international-news-07ace1ce7a7a213b2d26e48145b0c284

[10] https://www.sbac.edu/site/Default.aspx?PageID=10&DomainID=8#calendar14667/20210729/event/85453

[11] https://www.healthline.com/health-news/heres-how-well-covid-19-vaccines-work-against-the-delta-variant

[12] https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/23/delta-variant-pfizer-covid-vaccine-39percent-effective-in-israel-prevents-severe-illness.html

[13] https://www.ktvu.com/news/cdc-new-data-suggests-vaccinated-people-could-transmit-delta-variant

[14] https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/07/29/health-202-some-vaccinated-people-are-still-carrying-big-loads-delta-variant/

[15] https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/indonesia-children-delta-variant-vaccine-b1892274.html

[16] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-57551285

[17] https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7023e1.htm

[18] https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2779852?fbclid=IwAR01kMRjHFtCpAtald7_k1mp8LkGrZhWIXFhfWuItELi4ISJZtkHm25gXfY

[19] https://blog.petrieflom.law.harvard.edu/2021/07/23/covid-eugenics-health-based-discrimination/?fbclid=IwAR26u0WrD0P1q0SASARO7GZg0_RVg1Opq8NkhbydKEfQeXch7JXFGkcncYY

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