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When and how will full on-campus operations resume?

On Tuesday, June 23, the university announced its plans for restarting residential campus operations in Fall 2020, for students in the schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts. Please see the Fall 2020 Campus Guide for AS&E Students for more information. For information about Fall 2020 and the graduate and professional schools, please refer to the individual websites of the schools. 
 
Tufts plans to phase in the return of staff over time in a coordinated process to prioritize appropriate social distancing, availability of PPE (personal protective equipment), hygiene protocols, symptom screening, testing capabilities for COVID-19, and contact tracing.  
 
All members of the Tufts community will be given advance notice of when they will be expected to return to work on campus. 
 
No one should report to work on campus unless and until they have been explicitly cleared to do so by their school or department leadership.  
 
Tufts will expand on-site staffing based on an assessment of mission-critical operations, ability to control and manage specific work environments, and necessity of accessing on-site resources. Return-to-campus decisions, once approved, will be issued by your respective dean, vice president, or division leader.

Last update: Friday, Aug 7, 2020 - 10:55am

How can staff and faculty maintain social distance when they return to an office?

If you work in an open environment, be sure to maintain at least six feet of distance from co-workers. If possible, have at least one empty workspace separating you from another co-worker. You should always wear a face mask or face covering while in a shared workspace/room. Departments must assess open work environments and meeting rooms to institute measures to physically separate and increase distance between employees, other coworkers, and third parties. For more information, please refer to the Return to Campus Guide.

Last update: Friday, Aug 7, 2020 - 10:53am

How can departments modify work arrangements to support social distancing?

Once staff members have been instructed to return to campus, departments may consider a number of different alternative work arrangements in support of necessary social distancing requirements. Examples of some possible arrangements are included in the Return to Campus Guide and the Return to Campus Manager's Guide.

Contact your HR Business Partner for assistance in determining which arrangements may be discusses with you and your supervisor.

Last update: Friday, Aug 7, 2020 - 10:50am
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How will Tufts ensure safe re-access to buildings?

To best manage building capacity for effective social distancing, entry to all Tufts-owned and leased buildings will be regulated and monitored. Your Tufts card/badge will be required for entry to most buildings, even during normal business hours, and you may not hold doors or prop open exterior doors for any other person.

Once you have been instructed to return to the workplace, you should report to work or depart work through your designated building access point and at your designated time to limit the number of people entering and exiting at any one time. For more information, refer to the Return to Campus Guide or contact your supervisor.

Last update: Friday, Aug 7, 2020 - 10:49am

Do I have to wear my mask all the time when I am at work?

Tufts' COVID-19 policy requires everyone to wear a mask or face covering in the workplace with few exceptions outlined under the university's accommodation policy.

We encourage you to work with the Tufts Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) if you have questions or concerns about wearing a mask or cloth face covering in your Tufts workplace. In many situations, OEO has already found acceptable and safe adaptations, alternatives and accommodations for those individuals who are unable to wear a mask or cloth face covering because of a physical or mental impairment or sincerely held religious belief. OEO will engage in an interactive dialogue with you in order to increase your feasibility of wearing a mask or cloth face covering safely in your workplace with the goal of reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19 across Tufts University.

Do I have to wear my mask all the time when I am at work? My religious beliefs prohibit me from wearing a mask.

If you are able to wear a mask or face covering in the workplace, you must do so unless you have an approved accommodation. There are a few religious reasons why someone may not be able to wear a mask or other type of face covering in the workplace at Tufts. If you believe you need a religious accommodation related to wearing a mask or face covering, there are alternatives, adaptions and accommodations available to you.  Please call the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist, Johny Lainé at 617.627.3298.

Tufts University recognizes that wearing masks or cloth face coverings may not be safe or possible in all workplace situations for some people. We encourage you to work with the Tufts Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) if you have questions or concerns about wearing a mask or cloth face covering in your Tufts workplace. In many situations, OEO has already found acceptable and safe adaptations, alternatives and accommodations for those individuals who are unable to wear a mask or cloth face covering because of a physical or mental impairment or sincerely held religious belief. OEO will engage in an interactive dialogue with you in order to increase your feasibility of wearing a mask or cloth face covering safely in your workplace with the goal of reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19 across Tufts University.

Do I have to wear my mask all the time when I am at work? I have a physical or medical reason that prohibits me from wearing a mask.

If you are able to wear a mask or face covering in the workplace you must do so unless you have an approved accommodation. When wearing a mask or cloth face covering may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency or introduce significant safety concerns, adaptions and alternatives will be considered whenever possible to increase the feasibility of wearing a cloth face covering or to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading if it is not possible to wear one. Please contact the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist, Johny Lainé at 617.627.3298 if you have questions or wish to request an accommodation.

Tufts University recognizes that wearing masks or cloth face coverings may not be safe or possible in all workplace situations for some people. In some situations, wearing a mask or cloth face covering may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency or introduce significant safety concerns.  We encourage you to work with the Tufts Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) if you have questions or concerns about wearing a mask or cloth face covering in your Tufts workplace. In many situations, OEO has already found acceptable and safe adaptations, alternatives and accommodations for those individuals who are unable to wear a mask or cloth face covering because of a physical or mental impairment or sincerely held religious belief. OEO will engage in an interactive dialogue with you in order to increase your feasibility of wearing a mask or cloth face covering safely in your workplace with the goal of reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19 across Tufts University.

I have breathing issues and wearing a mask is too difficult.

There are few physical or mental health reasons why someone cannot wear a mask or other type of face covering in the workplace. Wearing a mask or cloth face covering may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency or introduce significant safety concerns. Adaptions and alternatives will be considered whenever possible to increase the feasibility of wearing a cloth face covering or to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading if it is not possible to wear one. Please contact the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist, Johny Lainé at 617.627.3298 if you have questions or wish to request an accommodation.

I rely on lip reading and my colleagues don’t realize I do this in the workplace. Can I ask everyone I work with not to wear a mask when speaking to me?

Please contact the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist, Johny Lainé, who will be able to assist you and your work group with this situation. There are few physical or mental health reasons why someone cannot wear a mask or other type of face covering in the workplace. When wearing a mask or cloth face covering may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency or introduce significant safety concerns, adaptions and alternatives will be considered. Transparent masks may be an acceptable adaption in this situation with the support of the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist, Johny Lainé at 617.627.3298.

I wear glasses and sometimes my mask fogs up my glasses and I can’t see.

Please contact the Tufts OEO Accommodation Specialist Johny Lainé at 617.627.3298, who will be able to assist you with this situation. Typically, masks or face coverings that come up underneath glasses will alleviate this issue. There are few physical or mental health reasons why someone cannot wear a mask or other type of face covering in the workplace. When wearing a mask or cloth face covering may exacerbate a physical or mental health condition, lead to a medical emergency or introduce significant safety concerns, adaptions and alternatives will be considered.

These FAQs are subject to change. Please check back here for the latest guidance. If you do not  find the information you are looking for, please send an email to COVID19@tufts.edu.