By Jordan Young
As Coronavirus numbers across the state continue to fall from the record-breaking surge, Texas surpassed the harrowing number of 60,000 Covid related deaths. A grim reminder of how deadly the virus is and why communities, such as Texas State, should continue to be vigilant.
However, many feel that the Department of Housing and Residential Life (DHRL) and Texas State are no longer proactive on covid. The safety of residents and resident assistants (RA) is a top priority for DHRL. Still, many who work for the department feel that both the university and DHRL are not protecting students.
One anonymous RA expressed their frustration on Coronavirus by saying, “An effort to mitigate the spread of Covid has seemingly gone away as resident halls no longer give out masks for students in need.”
“I would feel safer if people were actually required to get vaccinated,” another RA states. “Perhaps a mandatory Covid test every two weeks.”
Anxiety felt by many RA’s has increased since move-in. Due in part that bobcat trace does not notify RA’s or floormates who have come into close contact with residents that have been infected. This differs from the policy for classroom infections. The instructor and students who have come into close contact are notified by bobcat trace.
This policy has some RA’s questioning whether similar procedures can be done inside dorms.
“I’m frustrated that roommates and other floormates aren’t notified about infections when there are so many common areas in the dorm.”
Informing residents of positive dorm cases can be done as other universities have found ways to inform students, such as the University of Texas at Austin.
The responses for RA’s on DHRL and Texas States covid policy weren’t completely negative. The policy of sending students home to quarantine is a popular policy amongst student workers.
“I do appreciate the push to send Covid positive students home though, rather than housing them on campus.”
Creating plans for dealing with Covid positive people is difficult, but difficult doesn’t mean impossible, and actions can be taken. Overall, the students I spoke with understand that DHRL and the university are in a precarious situation by having to follow state and federal coronavirus laws. However, some measures can be taken to mitigate covid and to make staff feel safe.
Featured Image by Jordan Young
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