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Update on emergency notifications related to COVID-19 clusters

The Bell Tower is framed by leaves from a tree
View of the Morehead-Patterson Bell Tower on June 5, 2019, on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (Johnny Andrews/UNC-Chapel Hill)

Dear Carolina Community:

Since August 14, we have employed the Alert Carolina Emergency Notification system to inform our campus community of confirmed COVID-19 clusters at on-campus and off-campus housing affiliated with the University. Since starting to de-densify campus after our announcement on August 17, our on-campus residential community population has been reduced by approximately 45%, and the positivity rate for COVID-19 cases has decreased to 10% during the past three days.

Starting today, the University will begin sharing information about COVID-19 clusters exclusively on the Carolina Together website and on the University social media handles and no longer utilize the Alert Carolina Emergency Notification system for these updates. This change in our communications in no way diminishes the University’s sense of urgency in ensuring that this information is shared in a timely, transparent and accessible fashion. The Alert Carolina Emergency Notification system is meant to communicate the most critical and urgent information for the safety of the campus, and we are following best practices in its use.

It is important to note that fewer students remain on campus following our de-densification efforts, the positivity rate for COVID-19 on campus rate is decreasing, and members of our community are now generally aware, based upon our prior notification efforts, of the presence of COVID-19 on our campus. The University will remain in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act by making information about COVID clusters available using the communication resources provided.

We will continue to contact individuals who have been identified as close contacts directly, as well as provide information and directions for individuals residing where clusters are found.

George Battle
Vice Chancellor, Institutional Integrity and Risk Management