Face Covering Policy

Bates requires face coverings on campus for unvaccinated employees. To increase the safety on campus, and reduce the risk of COVID-19 on campus, Bates is requiring that employees are either fully vaccinated or wear a face covering. Exceptions to the policy are:

  • Outdoors, when appropriate distance is maintained
  • Eating in designated indoor spaces, when appropriate distance is maintained
  • Working in private offices and when working alone in closed (or contained) spaces on campus
  • Fully vaccinated individuals with an FDA-approved vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson)

This includes any type of mask or cloth face covering as described by the CDC. Employees are expected to understand the current face covering requirements in the state of Maine, which have been communicated by executive orders of the governor and are broadly reported and distributed. Maine has had public requirements consistent with the U.S. CDC’s strong encouragement of the use of face coverings in public to minimize the transmission of the virus via respirable droplets that are exhaled/inhaled when we breathe.

Please refer to CDC guidance for use and handling of face coverings. Wash your hands before putting your face covering on. Ensure it fits snugly against the sides of your face. If you have specific fit, training, or other questions on face masks, please speak with your manager or contact Bates Environmental Health and Safety (“EHS”). Several face covering styles are available to ensure proper fit.

Bates will provide access to face coverings for all employees, as needed, and they may be issued as part of one’s uniform in certain departments.  If you would like to make or purchase your own, the CDC has provided instructions on how to do so. Face coverings are readily available for purchase, as well. If you need a face covering, contact your supervisor/manager or EHS. The college expects that you will clean and maintain your face covering properly, in accordance with CDC Recommendations and bring it to campus for daily use.  Cleaning your face covering in a washing machine is appropriate. 

Accommodations and Presumption of Good Faith

When possible, accommodations will be made for those within our community who may not be able to wear a face covering due to trauma or underlying medical conditions. Employees requesting an accommodation for face coverings must contact Human Resources. Managers should not ask an individual to explain a request for an accommodation or the reason(s) for which one has been given.