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UW Madison requiring masks indoors starting Thursday

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MADISON (WKOW) — Students, employees and visitors of UW-Madison's campus will be required to wear masks, effective Thursday.

According to a press release, the updated guidance is a result of the increase in COVID-19 cases driven by the Delta variant. Although Dane County has the highest vaccination rate in the state, cases are still on the rise — especially among those unvaccinated against the virus.

"Going back to masking is not a step that many of us wanted to take, but it is important to protect the health of those on our campus and in our community," the press release reads.

Masks are not required in dorm rooms or outside, but are in campus buildings and dining halls, as well as Madison Metro buses or other campus vehicles.

According to the press release, officials are most concerned about the next two months as students arrive to campus from around the country and around the world.

"Given that we have students arriving from many destinations, we believe that requiring masks is the prudent thing to do. Our public health experts here at UW agree with this decision," the press release said.

This is even as UW-System reports that 80% of employees are vaccinated and expect at least 80% of students will be vaccinated.

Students and employees can still get free COVID-19 vaccines and testing through the University.

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Sierra Rehm

Social Media and Digital Content Manager

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