UC Berkeley lifts residence hall general self-sequester mandate

Photo of Unit 1 dorm, Christian Hall
Katie Lee/Staff
According to a UC Berkeley student affairs email, students living in campus residence halls will no longer have to self-sequester starting Tuesday. However, students who have been asked by University Health Services to quarantine or isolate themselves will only be released after their quarantine period ends.

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After a downward trend of UC Berkeley COVID-19 cases, campus will lift the general self-sequester for residential hall students effective Tuesday.

Students who have not been asked by University Health Services to quarantine or isolate themselves can now leave their rooms and floors while following social distancing guidelines and wearing masks. During the self-sequester, which went into effect Feb. 1, students were unable to leave their rooms for solo outdoor exercise.

“We realize that the last two weeks have been a challenging time for everyone involved, and we truly appreciate you doing your part to mitigate the surge of infections. Your sacrifices have made a huge difference,” according to a UC Berkeley student affairs email.

Students are also now permitted to return to Cal Dining halls, according to the email. Students who are currently directed to quarantine or isolate can only be released after completing their quarantine period, the email adds.

Within the residence halls, contact tracing in students affected by sequestration showed nearly no new spread of the virus, the email states. While the instances of campus COVID-19 cases has decreased, the virus is still widespread in off-campus student groups and could easily be reintroduced into the residence halls, according to the email.

“Now that the self-sequester is being lifted, we wish to remind everyone that it’s still critical to limit in-person interaction to your household grouping, practice physical distancing, wash hands frequently, and wear face coverings,” the email reads.

UC Berkeley continues to advise students to participate in free surveillance testing at least twice a week, which is a requirement for those living in residence halls, apartments and suites. In addition, students are allowed to go outside and exercise but still encouraged to self-isolate if they are exposed to COVID-19 or experience symptoms.

Check back for updates.

Aditya Katewa is a deputy news editor. Contact him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter at @adkatewa1.