Dear Colleagues,

According to CDC estimates, the coronavirus Delta variant, believed to be the most transmissible variant yet, has caused more than 75% of recent COVID-19 cases in the United States.

On Tuesday, July 26, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revised its guidance for fully vaccinated people, including issuing a new recommendation that fully vaccinated individuals wear a mask indoors in public areas of substantial or high transmission of COVID-19. According to the CDC, this action will reduce the risk of being infected with the Delta variant and possibly spreading it to others.

Barnstable County, where the MBL is located, is an area with a “high” level of community transmission of COVID-19, according to the most recent CDC data.

I write to reiterate the importance of unvaccinated and fully vaccinated individuals wearing masks indoors in all MBL buildings. Individuals can remove face coverings if they are in a private room/office alone with the door shut or while eating indoors (including designated breakrooms). This requirement remains in effect until further notice.  See mask guidance here.

We will be treating non-compliance as a serious matter. It is essential that all staff and every program participant visiting the campus—whether as a student, visiting scientist, course faculty, or course vendor—respect the public health commitments reflected in the attestation to which we have all agreed and which exists to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

MBL’s masking requirements will continue to evolve based on new public health guidance, and the number of COVID-19 cases and rates of transmission from COVID-19 variants in Barnstable County. Please monitor the MBL Forward website for the latest masking guidance.

Thank you for your continued support of the health and safety of our community and our neighbors.

Paul Speer
Chief Operating Officer