County Orders University Students To ‘Stay In Place’ Until Election Day As COVID-19 Cases Surge

Ken Wolter/Shutterstock

Adam Barnes General Assignment Reporter
Font Size:

A county health department Tuesday told students at the University of Michigan to stay in place until Nov. 3 due to a surge in positive tests on campus, the Associated Press reported.

Washtenaw County issued the order after positive tests on campus topped 1,000 cases. Student cases have accounted for 61% of all positive cases in the county since they arrived on campus Aug. 24, the county statement added.

Students can still attend class, go to work and exercise but are otherwise required to stay in their “on-campus, near-campus or off-campus housing,” per the order.

The order states the origin of the viral surge was linked to parties and it will ban large gatherings.

“In-person gatherings with non-household members are strictly prohibited for the duration of this order. Under no circumstance are visitors permitted in on- or off-campus housing for the duration of this order,” the statement adds.

Towns and counties across the country have battled COVID-19 outbreaks in their respective communities since students returned to campuses this fall, and universities have notably suspended, fined and dismissed their students violating social distancing policies. The order states that policy violators are subject penalties including expulsion.

“Such measures will be enforced, and any violations are subject to citation and penalties as outlined in the Michigan Public Health Code. In coordination with U-M administration, failure to adhere to this Order would constitute a violation of the U-M Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities COVID addendum and may lead to student sanctions up to and including suspension/expulsion,” the order read.

Boulder County, Colorado, which is home to the University of Colorado, took it a step further when it released an order Sept. 24 banning all young adult gatherings of young adults for two weeks regardless of whether they attended the university. (RELATED: Boulder Bans Young Adult Gatherings For Two Weeks)

Washtenaw County’s “stay in place” order will not affect the university’s athletic schedule.

“Students who are associated with intercollegiate varsity sports may attend practices and competitions provided that athletic medical staff is present during the entire process,” the statement read.