Update on COVID Restrictions


Andrew van der Stock

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Sadly, COVID is here to stay. We must learn to live with it. At some point in the future, the risk from COVID will be a great deal less than it is now. So it’s time to turn the temporary COVID restrictions into permanent policy. We can always amend, replace, or repeal the policy at some point in the future. Read on for more information.

This month, instead of simply updating the date and moving on, I’ve decided that it’s time to make the COVID restrictions permanent.

To do this, I edited down the previous restrictions to be primarily recommendations, but still require you to follow local health authority requirements when surges occur. And surges will occur, so let’s have a policy that deals with that today so that we don’t have to scramble again in the future.

We all know the drill now - social distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks are critical to containing the spread of disease. But we also know that the COVID-19 pandemic is a real threat to our health. Our goal is to ensure that we provide as safe an environment as possible, whilst still undertaking our mission. Life has to go on, by accepting some risks by mitigating others.

So the major settings are:

  • Virtual and hybrid meetings are our preferred meeting methods for the time being. If you have a physical only meeting, expect a lower turnout rate.
  • Social distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks are recommended, but not required.
  • You must follow local health authority requirements, including mandatory vaccination inspections if required, especially when surges occur.
  • You can require vaccinated events. Vaccinated events in my experience (three so far in the last 8 months) are far better attended than non-vaccinated events. Plus you are less likely to get COVID. I caught COVID at the sole unvaccinated event, and this is zero surprise to anyone.
  • You must inform attendees of any restrictions you are requiring or recommending before they attend.

Please stay home if you’re sick, even if this means cancelling the meeting. Require sick attendees to go home.

As this is becoming a permanent policy, I am opening up comments for a period of thirty days to improve the policy and make it more general. Please follow the instructions to provide feedback on policies.

The updated COVID policy can be found here: https://owasp.org/www-policy/operational/covid-restrictions