BY MARCO URIAS
The North Orange County Community College District board of trustees made the CDC-recommended booster shot mandatory for the upcoming fall 2022 semester.
The vaccine mandate of 2021 by the board of trustees was going to expire at the end of the spring semester. However, on March 22, the board took action to extend the vaccine mandate into the fall 2022 semester.
Cypress College students, faculty, and individuals over the age of 12 who plan to use on-campus facilities in the fall must have health clearance by Aug. 15.
The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines both have a 5 month waiting period for eligible people to receive a booster after the initial series of vaccinations, according to the CDC. The Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine, which has received FDA health warnings, has a 2-month booster waiting period.
The 2021 vaccine mandate of Aug. 24, allowed for exemptions due to religious beliefs or medical reasons, and this will also be the case with the extension of the mandate. Students with an exemption would be required to get tested weekly and have access to free testing, according to the NOCCCD.
News of the extension of the vaccine mandate came at a time when political COVID-19 developments are under a national debate. U.S. Florida judge, Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, ruled against the CDC mask guidelines. As a result, masks are no longer required on public transportation.
On April 19 the Orange County Transportation Authority said via twitter, “face mask are no longer required to be worn on board #OCBus effective immediately, in accordance with federal guidance. The CDC still recommends mask wearing on #transit to slow the spread of covid-19.”
CC students have access to a semester-long bus pass.
According to the NOCCCD, the decision to extend the vaccine mandate came with a commitment to “protecting the health and wellbeing of students, faculty, staff, administrators and the communities it serves”.