Officials, residents discuss impacts of new AU mask policy

Officials, residents discuss impacts of new AU mask policy

AUBURN, Ala. (WTVM) - On the heels of rapidly increasing numbers of coronavirus cases across the region, including the state of Alabama, Auburn University is instituting a new mask policy that began Monday.

Now, anytime you go inside a building on campus or attend a university-sponsored event, you have to wear some sort of face covering. The medical director at the school’s campus health clinic said this is small sacrifice to save lives and to save a semester of school on campus.

“The science definitely supports the policy,” Dr. Frederick Kam said.

The university is now requiring face coverings inside buildings and at university-sponsored events, even ones off campus.

Kam said the new policy is science-backed and logical, especially when factoring in the difficulty of social distancing inside buildings.

“The ability for everyone to take a personal accountability of wearing a mask and avoiding spreading the virus unnecessarily around, especially to people potentially vulnerable, makes total sense,” he said.

Many people in Auburn Monday said they are glad to see this new policy in place.

“I think it’s a good policy,” said Auburn resident Daryl McCormick. “It’ll help decrease the chances somebody will get COVID-19.”

Former Auburn student Lindsay Slusher agreed.

“It’s also just compassion for other people,” she said. “Wearing this mask, it’s a small thing for me to sacrifice to make other people feel comfortable.”

Kam said It’s also a sacrifice that can make impact later. The university shared in statement that by taking responsibility for the health of the entire campus, they’re working toward having a safe and uninterrupted fall semester.

“In the end, it’s a small sacrifice in an effort to save lives, and in an effort to save a semester, and in an effort to allow people to get in-person instruction when possible,” he said.

Kam also shared 60 students tested positive for the virus last week. He said this shows the virus is still present, looking for people to infect, and it’s a reminder to keep following all those social-distancing guidelines.

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