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Stronger Together Update (Jan. 18, 2022)

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Stronger togetherLATEST Stony Brook University Face Covering Requirements
An Important Message from the COVID-19 Health and Safety Committee 

For the safety of our campus community, face masks are required while inside all campus buildings – regardless of vaccination status. Limited exemptions are as follows:

  • Medical Reasons – Employees who are unable to wear facial coverings due to a medical or other health condition should consult with the Office of Equity and Access (OEA). Students should contact the Student Accessibility Support Center (SASC).
  • Individual Space – Facial coverings may only be removed when alone in a cubicle, office, or other designated areas and when following social distancing (includes residence hall rooms/apartments).

  • Eating/Drinking – Individuals may remove their masks to eat/drink, but should maintain social distancing.

Facial coverings are not required when outdoors. However, unvaccinated individuals should wear a facial covering when outdoors if attending a crowded event and unable to maintain six feet of physical distancing.

Stony Brook University recommends that you wear the most protective mask you can, that fits well, and that you will wear consistently and correctly, to protect you and others from COVID-19, including the Omicron variant that spreads more easily than the original SARS-CoV-2 virus. The recommendations are based on recent changes from the CDC on the Types of Masks and Respirators and emphasize that some masks and respirators offer higher levels of protection than others (see “Recommended” section below).

Make sure the face covering you select provides good protection AND that you can comfortably wear it consistently and correctly. Masks and respirators worn in this way have proven effective at reducing transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

The following recommendations are for non-healthcare workers. Healthcare workers should consult ThePulse on the hospital intranet for hospital guidance and requirements.

  • Cloth Masks with multiple layers of tightly woven, breathable fabric.
  • Procedure Masks, sometimes referred to as surgical masks, with multiple layers of non-woven material.

  • Masks that Meet a Standard, including ASTM F3502 Standard, and ASTM F2100 for medical masks.

  • Respirators that Meet International Standards, such as a KN95 or KF94 mask, are more protective than cloth masks IF they fit well and you are comfortable wearing them for a long period of time.
  • NIOSH-Approved Respirators, such as an N95, provide the highest level of protection when worn consistently and properly.

To improve performance and protection:

  • Wear tight-fitting masks and respirators over your nose and mouth.
  • Wear masks with multiple layers of material and a nose wire.

  • Wear two masks (disposable mask underneath AND cloth mask on top).


  • Single-layer fabric or those made of thin fabric that don’t block light
  • Gaps around the sides of the face or nose

  • Masks made of non-breathable materials (e.g., leather, plastic)

  • Masks that make it much harder to breathe

  • Masks that are wet or dirty


  • Masks or respirators with exhalation valves or vents
  • Neck gaiters, scarves, ski masks, balaclavas, turtlenecks or bandanas

  • Face shields (alone) without a mask or respirator


Visit our new Stronger Together website for the latest updates and information.

Contact us at with any questions/comments/ideas.

We welcome your feedback!

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