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University of Memphis to require masks for everyone indoors and places without social distancing

School leaders said as a public university in Tennessee, they are not able to require vaccination.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The University of Memphis says masks will be required for everyone indoors and anywhere where social distancing isn’t possible.

University leaders said Wednesday in an email to faculty, staff, and students that the requirements come after the CDC updated guidance to recommend everyone, including those who are vaccinated, wear masks in regions with surging COVID-19 numbers.

You can read the full email from the U of M below:

The CDC has updated COVID-19 guidance and is recommending that all persons, including fully vaccinated individuals, wear masks indoors in areas of “substantial or high transmission.” Accordingly, the University will be requiring that masks be worn by all persons while indoors and in places where maintaining appropriate social distancing is not possible.

Please review and comply with the following safety protocols:

Do not come to campus if you are experiencing symptoms, are in isolation or quarantine due to positive test results or exposure, pending test results, or have reason to believe you have come in contact with the virus. Notify the appropriate offices listed below:

  • For all faculty and staff-related COVID-19 concerns and notifications, contact Human Resources at hr@memphis.edu or 901.678.3573. This includes exposures, pending test results and/or COVID-19 related symptoms.
  • For all student-related COVID-19 concerns and notifications, contact the Office of the Dean of Students at deanofstudents@memphis.edu or 901.678.2187.

The University strongly encourages all on our campus to get vaccinated. As a public university in Tennessee, we are not able to require vaccination. That authority rests with the Governor and Tennessee Legislature. We will continue to provide access to vaccinations on campus through our partnership with the Baptist Medical Group. The next on-campus vaccine event is scheduled for August, 12, from 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. in the Rose Theatre Lobby. Pre-registration is preferred (register here), but not required.

As we have demonstrated for the past year and a half, we can work together to keep our campus and our community safe.

For the latest COVID-19 updates from the University of Memphis and vaccine information, visit memphis.edu/coronavirusupdates.