COVID-19 Information for BSC Members

OUR COVID-19 RESPONSE

Secure and safe housing for students is more important than ever. The Berkeley Student Cooperative is taking measures to comply with the latest health advisories from federal and local health officials (including UC Berkeley and the City of Berkeley) for “congregate housing facilities”:

  • We have reserved rooms and apartments for quarantining and self-isolation.
  • Masks and social distancing are required in Indoor common spaces. Outdoor common spaces do not require masks if you are fully Vaccinated.
  • We have instituted self-isolation protocols for COVID cases. When a student tests positive for COVID-19, they are relocated to a separate apartment to self-isolate while they recover. Our staff coordinates food, supplies, and medical attention. The affected house also enters tailored quarantine protocols and works closely with our Emergency Response Team and UC Berkeley/City health officials to minimize risk to others and determine when it is safe to lift the quarantine.
  • Eating is now allowed indoors.

RESOURCES FOR BSC MEMBERS

  • All BSC members are encouraged to get regularly tested for COVID-19.
  • We understand that many BSC members may be experiencing financial challenges. Members who have difficulty paying BSC rent are encouraged to reach out to our Accounting Department for help, guidance, and payment arrangements. Please contact Dorothy Williams dwilliams@bsc.coop for more information.

BSC Members, what to do if:

  • You test positive for COVID-19
  • You are unvaccinated and Develop symptoms of COVID-19 (recommendation if vaccinated below)
  • You learn that you’ve been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 while you are unvaccinated (recommendation if vaccinated below)

Individuals are strongly encouraged to:

  • Isolate in your room until further notice.
  • Contact your healthcare provider or health insurance carrier, if you have one.
  • Contact a trusted manager or the COVID-19 Action Team ASAP (whichever you’re most comfortable with).

Managers who’ve been notified or are aware of the situation must:

  • Contact the COVID-19 Action Team ASAP.
  • Do NOT share the individual’s name or health information with other members or managers unless clear, written permission is given.
  • Try to separate the individual from the rest of the house as much as possible
  • If they have a roommate, you can relocate them to the isolation room.
  • If possible, assign them a bathroom that no one else will use (unless there are already others at the unit with symptoms or known exposures).
  • Arrange meal delivery to the individual at their room.
  • Someone from the COVID-19 Action Team will advise you on next steps!
  • If you have any questions during this process contact the COVID-19 Action Team at covid@bsc.coop.

How to contact the COVID-19 Action Team

  • Email COVID-19 Action Team will respond during business hours on weekdays and between 12–8pm on weekends. Please contact them at covid@bsc.coop.
  • If you don’t hear back within 24 hours and it is urgent, contact Central Office during business hours (M–F 10pm–5pm) at (510) 848-1936 and ask to speak with Chris Kelley.

Vaccinated Exposure Guidelines from UC Berkeley:

  • Unvaccinated and Develop symptoms of COVID-19 or Learn that you’ve been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19
  • If a close contact is fully vaccinated and asymptomatic, they are advised to monitor for symptoms, wear a face covering and get tested at 5 days post-exposure.
  • You should avoid common spaces and large groups until you receive your negative test.

Important COVID-19 Guidelines for Summer Term for move-ins:

Dear all Co-opers:

As the Spring term winds down, we have important information and updates regarding the Summer term.

Important Notes:

  • Because the BSC is classified as a “congregate living facility”, the public health orders for us may be different from what you see on social media or the news.
  • In a BSC house, a “household” is anyone living in the same bedroom.
  • In a BSC apartment complex, a “household” is anyone living in the same apartment.
  • If you’re not fully vaccinated, you must wear a mask and practice social distancing.

SEQUESTRATION WHEN MOVING IN OR RETURNING FROM TRAVEL

  • BSC members who ARE fully vaccinated are NOT required to sequester unless they have 1) symptoms of COVID-19 or 2) an exposure to someone who tested positive.
  • BSC members who are NOT fully vaccinated must sequester when moving into the BSC or returning from travel.
  • This aligns with current public health orders for residents of congregate living facilities
  • You are not considered fully vaccinated until two weeks after your final dose

ROOM BIDS AND ROOMS

  • Room bids, the BSC’s room selection process, must occur virtually and prior to move-ins.
  • New members will move directly into their “permanent” rooms (i.e. no temporary rooms).

MOVING IN

  • We’re excited to welcome approximately 198 new members this Summer.
  • New members and folks transferring between units must schedule a move-in appointment ahead of time with the House Manager at their new unit.
  • House Managers will contact new members before move-in day to schedule move-ins.
  • Members are allowed up to 2 helpers to assist with the move-in process. Anyone helping you move in should be either vaccinated or have been tested negative within the last 5 days. People helping you move in should be limited to two (2) persons, wearing masks at all times while in common areas.

COVID-19 VACCINES AND TESTING

COVID-19 Booster Shots:

Johnson and Johnson Booster Shot:

  • It is recommended that you get a booster shot 2 months after your initial dose of the vaccine

Moderna and Pfizer Booster Shots:

  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) expanded eligibility on November 19th 2021. It is now available for everyone 18+ who was fully vaccinated at least 6 months ago.

You are considered fully vaccinated 14 days after your second vaccine dose.

(Effective immediately, we will be observing these new guidelines for gatherings.)

Rapid test protocols/FAQ

We will provide rapid tests while supplies last. The ERT is attempting to acquire additional Covid Tests.

Who can access rapid tests?

  • Members who are not able to access covid testing through UC Berkeley
  • Members who have had a direct contact with someone who has tested positive
    • This can mean someone who’s roommate has tested positive OR someone who has come into close, prolonged contact with someone who has tested positive

How can I request rapid tests?

  • Email Covid@bsc.coop and include a message with the reason you are requesting a test.
  • You can only request your own test. This is to ensure there is an accurate count of tests being requested on a weekly basis.
    • Only House Presidents and House Managers can request rapid tests in bulk. Please be aware that CF&S has a limited supply of tests.
  • Your test will be delivered. Since every community is different, the specifics of your test delivery will organized with CF&S

If I test positive on a rapid test, what do I do?

Masks, Gatherings & Guests

MASKS

  • Members in each individual unit will be able to vote for or against indoor masking. Each house MUST have the same threshold as is required for unit-level bylaw changes, in order to lift the mask mandate for that house (only for fully vaccinated individuals).
  • If the city of Berkeley or the state of California chooses to reinstate policy requiring mask covering, the BSC will also reinstate the mask policy for all individuals regardless of vaccination status.
  • If 5% of members, or 3 members in a community(whichever is higher) (excluding the apartments) test positive for Covid-19 masks will be required until less than 5%, or fewer than 3 members physically present in the unit are positive with Covid-19.

GATHERINGS

  • No houses will have parties for ten days after move-ins, winter break, and Spring break.
  • All approved parties will require proof of vaccination or a negative covid test taken within 3 days to attend.
  • Parties in BSC houses must be approved by a supermajority of the house.
  • Members who are displaying covid symptoms as defined by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) are not allowed to attend parties.
  • Should a Covid-19 outbreak occur in a BSC house, there will be a temporary party embargo in that BSC house for ten days.
    • A covid outbreak is defined as 5% or more of the members, or 3 members, whichever is higher, in one BSC House being positive at the same time
    • Individual communities can have the temporary embargo removed before the ten day deadline by having every member present in the house submit a negative covid test result as a part of party approval process
  • Parties must take place in a space that is avoidable for members.
  • Unit-Level Managers must still follow all proper policies regarding preparation for parties, outlined in the BSC party policy.

GUESTS

  • Each member should only host one (1) guest at a time
  • Both the member and guest should be fully vaccinated
  • Guests are encouraged to remain outside or in your room, but are also allowed in common spaces.
  • Guests and members are not required to provide proof of vaccination or other private medical information to Student or Central Staff.

RESPONDING TO POSITIVE CASES, QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS

Emergency Response Team

The Emergency Response Team (ERT) oversees the overall BSC guidelines and strategic direction. The ERT can be reached at ert@bsc.coop.

COVID-19 Action Team

The COVID-19 Action Team (CAT) responds to positive cases and other operational activities. The CAT can be reached at covid@bsc.coop.

Best,

The Emergency Response Team

Sources:

Updated May 16th, 2022.