UW System reveals plans to remove mask requirements

MADISON (WKBT) — The University of Wisconsin intends to remove its mask requirements by spring break, UW System President Tommy Thompson announced Wednesday.

Thompson said widespread vaccination on university campuses and the decrease in on-campus cases makes it a good time to lift mask mandates as soon as March 1, but no later than spring break, which begins March 11 at UW-La Crosse and March 21 at UW-Eau Claire.

“Wisconsin has one of the fastest rates of coronavirus decline in the country,” Thompson said. “While we will continue to take prudent prevention measures when warranted, restrictions can be lifted as case counts drop. Further, vaccinations and boosters are readily available to combat the virus that is much less severe for people who take this individual responsibility to protect themselves and others.”

Coronavirus vaccines and tests will still be available on campus, and students and employees can opt to wear masks if they wish, he said. Moreover, the UW System and its universities will continue to monitor COVID-19 and will adjust policies as needed if circumstances change.

“Our students have been terrific for the last two years in demonstrating a culture of responsibility,” Thompson said. “We have worked relentlessly to instill in them the need to protect themselves and those around them. Students should be able to cheer on sports teams, attend concerts and performances, and go to classes without masks when the conditions are right.”

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