KSC keeps the mask mandate

Gov. Sununu’s decision to not renew NH’s mask mandate is preemptive

Sean Keohane / Arts Director

Keene State College is doing the right thing by keeping New Hampshire’s mask mandate in place despite New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu’s decision to not renew it.

According to WMUR-9, Governor Sununu’s decision to end the mask mandate was based on the number of deaths and hospitalizations on the decline. Additionally, Governor Sununu said that, since many of New Hampshire’s populace are either partially vaccinated or fully vaccinated, he feels safer relaxing the state’s COVID-19 restrictions. Despite all of this, Keene State College’s administration decided that continuing to enforce the mask mandate would be in the college’s best interesting. The Keene State administration has been relatively good at following the science behind COVID-19 and the advice and recommendations from scientists.

Currently, Keene State is in the Green/Yellow campus operational status. Since KSC is in a Green/Yellow campus operational status, it is a good choice for the college to keep the mask mandate in place. This is because masks help prevent the spread of the virus which is the main reason as to why the college is in the Green/Yellow campus operational status. Furthermore, there are still consistently over 10 positive cases each week. While 10-plus cases may not seem like a lot of cases in general, if Keene State College were to remove the mask mandate, it could lead to an entirely new outbreak in the city of Keene and its surrounding areas.

Although more and more people are becoming vaccinated by the day, Governor Sununu’s decision to not renew the mandate is preemptive. Since keeping the mask mandate in place is the best way to help slow the spread of COVID-19, New Hampshire should’ve renewed the mask mandate. A main concern with removing the mask mandate is that many college students are still not completely vaccinated or not vaccinated at all. Since many college students are still vulnerable to the virus, it means that COVID-19 is still able to spread throughout the community. The Keene State College administration should wait until herd immunity has been achieved before removing the mask mandate so that the virus doesn’t spread as freely.

The city of Keene has also extended the mask mandate throughout the city. Despite the city’s decision to keep the mandate as well, many Keene State College students are nervous about how Keene residents are going to follow the guidelines. Some of the local residents have been seen walking in groups without their masks on, despite the city mandate still being in place.

Since the Keene State administration bases their decision on science, keeping the mask mandate in place is the best option to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

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