Level 1

James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation Strategic Plan for Operations during the COVID-19 Pandemicrevised August 2021

Situational Criteria

If any one or more actual, existing conditions are of greater severity than even one of the criteria conditions listed below, the guidelines of the next higher level are to be implemented. The guidelines for this level will be implemented two weeks after these situational criteria come into effect, if dropping from a higher level, or immediately if rising from a lower level. 

COVID Act Now Metrics for Dane County are at the following levels:

  • Daily new cases per 100K “Under 1/on track for containment” (green)
  • Infection rate “Under 0.9/COVID decreasing” (green)
  • Positive test rate “3-10%” (yellow)
  • The vaccine is widely available (free to all, at multiple accessible locations in Dane County) for all people over the age of 2 years

And state, county, and/or city authorities have allowed indoor gatherings to resume with some restrictions.

The building ventilation is fully functional, with clean filters and appropriate intake, in the areas that will be used.

Building Accessibility and Use

The building may be used for groups, including renters, which must sign up on the building use calendar. The organizer of each gathering must provide a means for pre-registration, including a way to choose virtual participation. No more than three groups may be in the building at the same time, and only in the following configurations:

  • Sanctuary: up to 40 people, spaced apart as individuals or households
  • Multipurpose room: up to 10 people, spaced apart as individuals or households
  • Front classroom: up to 3 people, spaced apart as individuals or households

Hand sanitizer is placed in appropriate locations throughout the building.

Signs are prominently displayed indicating:

  • Which parts of the building may be used, and which are closed
  • The configurations listed above
  • The guidelines listed below

All individuals and groups (including renters and children/youth) using the building are to follow these guidelines:

  • Sign in with their name and phone number in the log book provided, and attest to three stipulations in order to remain in the building and participate in the activity (expected participants will be notified ahead of time of the sign-in requirement, including the health questions, the attestations related to health precautions taken, and travel):
    1. They feel healthy now and have not experienced fever, chills, new cough,  shortness of breath, new sore throat, muscle aches, new head ache, or new loss of smell or taste in the last 14 days.
    2. They have consistently worn a mask and maintained social distance when interacting indoors with unvaccinated people outside their household for the last 14 days.
    3. They have not traveled to areas experiencing increases of cases of COVID-19 greater than those occurring in Dane County in the last 14 days.
  • Wear a mask at all times.
  • Practice social distancing of at least 6 feet apart at all times.
  • Wash one’s hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after one has been in a public place, or after blowing one’s nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Limit gatherings to 2 hours or less.
  • Restrict restroom use to one person or set of household members at a time in each of the three restrooms.
  • Do not share food; individuals may bring personal water

Congregational Life – Worship and Program

Sunday services and rites of passage (weddings, memorials, etc.) are conducted in the sanctuary and attended by individuals according to the configurations and guidelines listed above, and are streamed for those not able to gather physically.

  • Only vaccinated adults may lead worship, offer music, and serve as greeters and hospitality hosts in the building.
  • People leading worship and offering music may remove their masks to speak/sing.
  • Instrumental music may be played (other than brass or woodwind).
  • There will be no congregational singing indoors, but up to four musicians may sing from the chancel during worship with a distance of at least six feet between musicians and at least twelve feet between them and the congregation.
  • Offering baskets are placed in the sanctuary but not passed.
  • Hymnals and paper orders of service are not used.

There will be no shouting, heavy breathing, singing or chanting (except as noted in the next paragraph for choir), or playing of brass or woodwind instruments in the building.

Outside of Sunday mornings, the choir may rehearse or record in the sanctuary for up to half an hour singing time, with singing masks and six-foot distancing, and with the same requirements as other building use.

Religious Education for children and youth resumes. All adults working with children/youth must be vaccinated. All sessions must be conducted according to the configurations and guidelines listed above, and are streamed for those not able to gather physically.

All JRUUC gatherings and meetings will include an online accessibility option for those not able to gather physically. Online options might include separate virtual gatherings for people not able to attend in-person gatherings, a set time to “stream in” people who’d like to greet people attending an in-person event, a Zoom option for meetings, or any other creative option that works toward wider inclusion.

Staff Practices

All staff may choose whether to work remotely or in the office.

Staff meetings will take place virtually, unless staff members explicitly agree to meet in the building.

If two or more staff members share the same work area:

  • Meeting time is limited to an hour.
  • Sharing of work tools and equipment (e.g. pens, pencils, calculators, computer keyboards, etc.) is discouraged.
  • Note: Masks and six-foot distancing seem to mitigate the risk of transmission of ‘particles’ broadcast by a cough or sneeze. However, aerosols may still accumulate in the air in an enclosed area over a period of time and may be a source of transmission. Limiting the time two or more spend in a room together and increasing air circulation, by using a fan and opening doors, are actions that should be taken.

When working alone, wearing a mask is not necessary.

Should a staff member develop any COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for COVID-19, they must notify all other staff members; any staff members with whom the ill person has come into contact may not return to the building for two weeks.

Outdoor Gatherings

Keep the gathering to a size that can ensure proper distancing, or split it into smaller groups if necessary for distancing. The organizer of the gathering is responsible to implement the outdoor gathering guidelines for this level, to communicate them to participants as needed, and to provide a means of virtual participation.

All participants will sign in, and the organizer will keep a copy of the sign-in sheet for two weeks in case contract tracing should be necessary.

Ensure a physical distance from each other of at least six feet.

Arrive at all outdoor gatherings wearing a mask. Masks may be removed if all participants explicitly express comfort in doing so.

Singing masks must be worn while singing, chanting, or performing deep-breathing exercises, as these activities carry a higher risk of transmission of COVID‐19. These activities are limited to 1 hour (in addition to any other speaking time).

Bring hand sanitizer. Avoid touching ones’ face and frequently wash or sanitize hands, if possible.

Refrain from bringing items for sharing with others.

The JRUUC building is open for restroom use, according to the guidelines listed above.

Special considerations should be discussed if the gathering is to include small children and others who might find it hard to observe physical distancing.