Westminster’s Responsible Building Use Task Force met this week and reviewed the Covid positivity numbers for the Twin Cities area, community transmission data, and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). After reviewing the data, the task force has decided to return Westminster temporarily to Phase 4 in our re-opening the building plan. This means that:
- Westminster will no longer offer a mask-optional worship opportunity in Westminster Hall on Sunday mornings.
- All individuals inside the church building will be required to wear masks, unless they are alone in an office or a room, no matter their vaccination status.
In addition, the task force decided to no longer allow the consumption of food or drink inside the building (except for communion in the sanctuary); however, food and drink outside are still permitted, if served according to earlier safety guidelines.
The task force has also paused the plan to move to Phase 5.0 in September. The group determined that based on the data, the safest course of action is to wait until the surrounding community has a less infectious risk level before expanding capacity allowances in the building.
Therefore, the allowances and requirements in Phase 4.0 remain:
- Allow groups of up to 250 people to gather in the sanctuary with 6-foot social distancing and masks.
- Allow outdoor gatherings of up to 150, masks optional for fully-vaccinated individuals, provided the number of people is limited to the maximum capacity with 6-foot social distancing, both on-site and at off-site locations.
- Allow groups of up to 75 people to meet in the building or indoors at off-site locations, provided occupancy is limited to the maximum capacity with 6-foot social distancing and masks.
- All occupancy limitations may be increased or decreased by the COVID-19 Response Team as circumstances and regulations change.
- Masks are required in the building.
- Allow singing with masks on inside the building and mask-optional singing outside.
The task force will meet again in mid-September to review the data and consider any additional changes.