Hey Teams, I wanted to get a note out to you all to share some of the results from the last employee survey we conducted related to our internal mask policies. First, I wanted to say a big “thank-you” to those who filled out this survey or who emailed us to offer your perspective on this issue. We know that better decisions are made when we hear from the stakeholders involved.
Before we get into the exact path forward, I do want to note that for the foreseeable future we will be keeping our mask policies time-bound, with regular check-ins and we will always be willing to change our policies as necessary. Whatever path we set forward is subject to change.
Here is the summary chart from the main question in the survey:
As you can see, SCC is far from monolithic when it comes to how we think and behave in the midst of the pandemic. We have notes from our survey and emails from employees who are concerned about adjusting our mask policies. That rests alongside the fact that the majority of our employees now would like to have mask-wearing be optional, and COVID cases are currently in steep decline.
In addition to this survey, we continue to read and take-in information about COVID spread rates, variant severity, and CDC recommendations. On Friday, the CDC released some updated guidance for mask-wearing. Their latest update announced that the do not see masks as currently necessary for healthy, vaccinated people in areas that do not have a high spread rate of COVID.
Given these data points, we’re left with a tough decision ahead of us in terms of how we proceed. So we’re going to go slow. Assuming COVID cases continue to decline and there is no further change to the CDC recommendations, then we would plan on making mask-wearing optional four weeks from today (March 28th). Waiting until then will allow us to see how the adjustment to the municipal ordinance impacts COVID spread in our community before we embrace a change ourselves. We will also send an update on this plan in mid-March accompanied by a formal process update from T & P.
We certainly understand, as mentioned above, that there is some diversity of perspective here. We are also beginning to understand that COVID is something we need to learn to live with long-term. It’s not the flu, but it likely will take a similar place in our society as a virus that we must live with. We will endeavor to lead the company based on the facts available to us, based on the speak-ups of our team members, and based on what is currently happening in our community. We will seek to keep these things in balance to the best of our ability.
Thanks again for participating in this process with us.
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