The University of Michigan Central Student Government held a meeting Tuesday evening to discuss increasing COVID-19 safety practices on campus.
The resolution, titled Expanding COVID-19 Safety Policies, asks the University to implement additional regulations to mitigate the spread of the virus, such as requiring COVID-19 testing twice weekly, allowing instructors to refuse in-person instruction to any unvaccinated students and asking individuals to wear masks inside the Big House.
Members of the University community have expressed concern with current COVID-19 policies, specifically noting no mask mandate at football games and the decision to end COVID-19 classroom notifications.
LSA and Engineering sophomore Allan VanZandt supported the resolution. Though 95% of students are self-reported as fully vaccinated, VanZandt hoped the vaccination rate would continue to increase.
“More hand sanitizer in your physics class is not going to stop transmission that happens at a party,” VanZandt said. “Although we are doing a pretty good job getting the vaccinations up, we are not at 100%, as of last time I checked the campus blueprint dashboard.”
Currently, people who are unvaccinated or have not been tested for COVID-19 are able to enter the Big House on game days. Engineering junior Zaynab Elkolaly said the resolution aimed to ensure the safety of the campus community as the number of student COVID-19 cases continue to increase.
“The essence of this resolution is to issue an enforcement warning to any stadium facilities that the masks need to be more enforced in the indoor concession areas, as well as potentially promote a mandatory vaccination or proof of testing policy, because to our knowledge, one doesn’t exist,” Elkolaly said. “A vaccine mandate and testing requirement would be reasonable for those who wish to attend football games.”
LSA senior Elena Swirczek said she believes the University should strongly encourage and enforce additional COVID-19 restrictions for the student body to follow.
“We recognize that the student government may not necessarily have the power to make these changes, but there’s something that I know a lot of people are concerned about,” Swirczek said. “We all want to be in-person, but we just want in-person to be safe and productive.”
The Assembly passed the resolution.
CSG also discussed a resolution permitting funding to go towards purchasing the Cooking add-on from the New York Times. The resolution, which was first introduced during last week’s meeting, was debated and postponed until this week for CSG to discuss further.
LSA sophomore Erin Wade said she opposed funding the Cooking add-on because she believes it is inappropriate for the University to spend money on getting students access to premier recipes as a way to address food insecurity on campus.
“I have never once felt that my cooking abilities were hindered because I didn’t have a New York Times cooking subscription,” Wade said. “Arguing that students wouldn’t have access to information on good nutrition recipes, learning how to cook, et cetera, that they would not have access to that without the subscription is absurd.”
Though it was met with debate, the Assembly passed the resolution.
Daily Staff Reporter Nirali Patel can be reached at email@example.com.