Ottawa County will reduce restrictions on Grand Valley State University students after a “marked improvement” from a spike in COVID-19 cases last month.
The new “Staying Safe” order for GVSU — which follows a more restrictive stay-in-place order issued last month — will remain in place through Oct. 15 for students living on or near the Allendale campus, including Georgetown and Allendale townships.
The new limits ordered by the Ottawa County Department of Public Health include:
- Up to four guests may visit student living units and residences “while observing strict preventive measures, including social distancing and wearing face coverings.” GVSU students who live in on-campus housing also must follow the university’s Housing and Residence Life Guest Policy and Community Living Standards.
- At all indoor common areas on the Allendale campus, students may not gather in groups greater than four people. Classes or university organized academic activities are exempt.
- All outdoor gatherings should not exceed 10 people and they should use face coverings except when eating or drinking. This limit excludes gatherings organized by the university.
- Face coverings are still required indoors and outdoors.
The Ottawa County health department on Sept. 17 imposed a stricter stay-in-place order that required GVSU students to remain in their residences for 14 days. The two-week order expired today and came after a spike in COVID-19 cases involving more than 600 GVSU students.
Since then, data has shown a “marked improvement,” according to an announcement today from the Department of Public Health.
“Over the last couple of weeks, the number of positive COVID-19 test results has shown a steady decline in and around the GVSU on-campus and off-campus housing in Allendale Township,” the county said.
“Our COVID-19 response team has worked closely with the GVSU administrative leaders in the decisions to take action based on the latest epidemiological findings,” Ottawa County Health Officer Lisa Stefanovsky said in a statement. “We appreciate all their hard work and recognize the challenges that GVSU students and staff had to endure. Our partnership has made a difference in helping to slow the spread of disease, keeping our communities healthy and safe, and building the trust our community has in both our organizations.”