UW-La Crosse announces shelter in place

University of Wisconsin La Crosse
University of Wisconsin La Crosse(WEAU)
Published: Sep. 13, 2020 at 12:19 PM CDT
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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) - UW-La Crosse is expanding its shelter in place restrictions to all residence halls on Sunday, going into effect at 5 p.m. due to the high number of COVID-19 cases on campus. UWL says these restrictions are in place for at least two weeks.

This announcement comes after 370 students in Coate Hall were told to quarantine last week.

The university will suspend all undergraduate in-person instruction on Monday and classes will resume remotely on Wednesday. All graduate classes will continue as planned. UWL says in-person classes could resume on September 28.

The university is asking students not to travel home during this shelter in place period. Students who live off-campus are asked to respect the shelter in place restrictions as well.

Face coverings will be required on all indoor and outdoor campus property effective immediately.

The university announced 51 new cases of the virus on Sunday for a total of 175 cases connected to the campus since September 8.

UWL also announced the following will go into effect at 5 p.m. on Sunday:

• Nearly all student-facing resources will be virtual with a presumed in-person resumption on Monday, September 28th. Each Vice Chancellor will share more information about the services housed within their divisions.

• All in-person study spaces, including those at Murphy Library, the Union and academic buildings will be closed.

• Dining services will shift to carry-out meals only.

• The REC will convert to virtual/remote programming.

• Student Health Center will only be open for urgent care needs and by appointment only. Telehealth and telemedicine appointments are available.

• In-person gatherings must be cancelled or be converted to virtual settings. Whenever possible, work meetings should continue to be conducted virtually.

• On-site essential operations will continue as defined by your Vice Chancellor. Generally, employees who are able to work remotely should do so. Starting today at 5 p.m. employees will be limited to card access to their assigned building. Supervisors should be flexible with employees who have returned to work on campus in non-essential functions.

• Campus Child Center will remain open at this time.

In a statement, UW System President Tommy Thompson said:

"Today’s mitigation steps announced by UW-La Crosse Chancellor Joe Gow will combat the COVID-19 case increases we have identified on its campus. Moving to online course delivery for a two-week period while sheltering in place can be an effective tactic, as we have seen with other universities.

Students must be vigilant to combat this virus. UW-La Crosse is engaged with local health officials to ensure the community’s health is prioritized. We welcome their support and collaboration in these efforts.

Our rapid antigen tests are successfully identifying pockets of infection at a few campuses, and we will continue to take immediate and aggressive steps where this is the case. At the same time, we are encouraged by results at other universities, and continue to aggressively monitor and respond to conditions with the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff and communities foremost in mind."

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