Require UCM to set higher COVID-19 Protocol Standards

Require UCM to set higher COVID-19 Protocol Standards

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Jordan White started this petition to University of Central Missouri

Hello everyone! My name is Jordan White and I am a Junior instrumental music education major here at UCM.

The University of Central Missouri has opted to have classes in-person for the Fall 2020 semester, under the notion that all of their COVID-19 protocols be followed to the best of the ability of students, faculty, and administration. In comparison to other Missouri universities, UCM has frequently been inadequate in their ability to respond to COVID-19 issues. We were one of the last universities to hear about the cancellation after spring break, masks weren't mandated until July 15th, and the student body has not received a formal update since July 30th, until today. The student body was informed at about 2:45 p.m. that there are 42 active student cases on campus and well as 4 worker cases. This is purely and utterly unacceptable. In the last month, there have been no formal updates other than promotional videos of scenery around campus with the flowery message telling us to stay safe and follow guidelines. However, these guidelines are all but safe, secure, and supplementary to student health. 

While other universities have offered free testing to students in any capacity, UCM has stipulations on whether it is necessary to be tested, despite the common knowledge that individuals can be asymptomatic to COVID-19. Students are told to call the University Health Center, in which they will take 24 hours to determine if you are "at-risk" enough to be tested. This negligence to take action can cause an outbreak in larger departments. After a positive test, students are only required to self-quarantine for 10 days because it is believed to be the point at which the student will no longer carry the contagions for COVID-19, according to Johnson County Community Health Services. However, most other recommendations declare that this quarantine should last 14 days. 

In those four days, students could attend all of their classes for that week, which in our music department could easily be 3-5 classes a day, consisting of 15-20 students each, if not more, in cases of ensembles. An outbreak can occur from the recommendations given.

The longer that UCM does not take an active stand against COVID-19, the greater chance of a campus wide outbreak. Cases are not being reported past the university level, which have just now been released to students, tests are only readily available at the recommendation of the health center, and the actions taken in accordance to COVID-19 are little and few. 

As a leader of the Marching Band, I want the best for the student body, faculty, and administration. The only way to achieve this in its totality is to enforce a stricter regiment of testing and quarantine guidelines.

Make UCM care about the health and well-being of the people who make our Alma Mater what it truly can be.

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