The University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) has reinstated a mask mandate that was lifted not too long ago, regardless of whether an individual has been vaccinated against the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, citing recommendations of local health officials.
In a campus-wide email sent on July 2, the UCLA announced that it has modified the masking protocols in response to recent emergence of the Delta variant of the CCP virus in Los Angeles County. The university previously removed the mask requirement for fully vaccinated individuals in outdoors and most indoor spaces on campus, which serves about 44,000 students and 33,000 staff.
The updated mask rule, however, now states that individuals must wear masks in classrooms on campus, teaching labs, libraries, and indoor recreation spaces, regardless of their vaccination status, according to the email published by student newspaper Daily Bruin. Passengers are also required to wear masks while using transportation services on or near the campus.
Verified fully vaccinated individuals may remove their masks in research labs, offices, meeting rooms and any outdoor spaces, the UCLA said in the email. Those who are partially or not vaccinated against the CCP virus must still wear masks in those facilities, and may only remove their masks while eating, so long as they also maintain physical distance.
The announcement comes after the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health “strongly” recommended that all residents wear masks in indoor public places to help curb the spread of the reported Delta variant, which it described as “highly transmissible.”
“Public Health strongly recommends people wear masks indoors in settings such as grocery or retail stores; theaters and family entertainment centers, and workplaces when you don’t know everyone’s vaccination status,” the health officials said in a June 28 statement. “Until we better understand how and to who the Delta variant is spreading, everyone should focus on maximum protection with minimum interruption to routine as all businesses operate without other restrictions, like physical distancing and capacity limits.”
Meanwhile, some are urging Americans not to overreact on the Delta strain, which is prompting governments of Hong Kong, Israel, and the United Kingdom to reimpose public health restrictions.
“Don’t let the fearmongers win,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), a consistent critic of lockdown measures throughout the past year, wrote on Twitter, citing a study released by Public Health England, an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care in the United Kingdom. According to the 69-page report (pdf), a total of 50 out of 7,235 reported cases of vaccinated individuals died from the Delta variant, while just 44 out of 53,822 unvaccinated individuals died from the Delta variant.