Updated October 2022

PERMISSION REQUIRED TO MEET:  Anyone using CVUUS grounds or buildings MUST get clearance and schedule ahead of time with Laura.  We are still limiting attendance levels based on COVID conditions vaccination eligibility for all ages. See here for more about scheduling and renting our environmentally-friendly, award-winning well-ventilated spaces with wifi and media access for multi-platform meetings. Contact Laura in the Office M-F 8-12  office@cvuus.org. In an emergency, when Laura can’t be reached, contact Rev. Barnaby 989-9303.

MASKING IS OPTIONAL

  • WORSHIP There is designated mask-only seating on the side, next to windows.
  • NURSERY and PROGRAMS FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH  All those working with kids need to be fully vaccinated and boosted.
  • SMALL CVUUS GROUPS  A Zoom option should be offered.
  • NON-CVUUS GROUPS MAKE THEIR OWN MASKING DECISIONS

MASKS AND RAPID COVID TESTS ARE AVAILABLE IN THE SANCTUARY FOYER

VACCINATION STRONGLY ENCOURAGED:  CVUUS encourages all eligible congregants and friends to be fully vaccinated and boosted. Contact our Caring Network if you want a ride to and from or help scheduling your appointment or to be tested or help acquiring a home rapid test kit.

DISTANCING:  Distancing is still a healthy safety measure and should be observed where convenient.

VENTILATION: Our goal is to help keep our spaces airy and help mitigate possible air-borne COVID as much as we can. The first person arriving in a space should read and follow the posted Ventilation Guidelines. Each CVUUS space has ventilation guidelines posted for that particular space. The best ventilation for COVID avoidance uses multiple options at the same time.  The Sanctuary and Fellowship Hall have modern HEPA-13 HVAC ventilation systems. We also have 3 excellent HEPA-13 portable air purifiers.” (CVUUS COVID Policy updated 6.2.22)

Here’s the specific info for the SANCTUARY:

  1. Open as many windows as weather allows
  2. HVAC system turned on by pressing HVAC button in the Foyer, near stairs
  3. Ceiling fans turned on > LOW only and can’t use if windows aren’t open

   Optional:  add a fan in one window exhausting air out if available

   Optional if small group meeting:  portable air filter on near the group

What if it’s raining? Then don’t open the windows or just open ones that don’t let rain in.

Questions? Talk to any Safe Congregation Team member (Mike, Alan, Poppy, Ronnie, Will, Laura)

SINGING: Worship leaders and performers who test negative morning of worship may sing unmasked. Congregants who wish to sing unmasked are encouraged to test that morning or remain masked.

REPORTING: If you test positive after being around others on our site, it is helpful to report this to the office and give us permission to use your name and let us know if you were masked and where you sat.

EXPOSURE TO SOMEONE WITH COVID: If you have been exposed to someone with COVID, you may still attend worship or an event at CVUUS but should follow CDC guidelines–wear mask if within 10 days of being a close contact and also test before coming.

STAFF: If exposed, follow CDC guidelines. Can still attend work and events but stay masked for up to 10 days and test on the  3rd, 5th,  and 7th days after exposure.

IMPORTANT INFO ABOUT COVID RAPID TESTS

GET FREE TESTS: If you have Medicare or Health Insurance, you can get 8 tests (which usually means 4 boxes with 2 tests in each) FREE every 30 days.  At Walgreens, you can get that “filled” like a prescription each month and then you don’t have to pay out of pocket and deal with getting reimbursed.  Just go to the window with your insurance card and ask for your monthly free tests.  They will process it and give you a bag with your Binax-Now tests, for free.  Then make a reminder in your calendar to do this every 30 days (NOT every month).

DONATE TESTS YOU DON’T NEED TO CVUUS: If you have tests you don’t need OR you don’t need to do the free tests every 30 day deal, PLEASE donate these tests to CVUUS!  Do the 30 day deal any way, since the government is paying (!), and we will get the tests to those that can’t afford them.  We are building a test stockpile to have available to congregants and community members that need a free test for any reason, especially for this Fall/Winter, when a predicted COVID surge is coming.

TEST EXPIRATION DATES HAVE BEEN EXTENDED! The back of your test box might say that the expiration date is September 1 but that is probably not true!  As the FDA sees that tests remain accurate over time, it has extended the expiration dates of practically ALL rapid tests.  The link below lets you find the real expiration dates.

Look up your COVID rapid test to see what the TRUE new extended expiration date is

ALSO – if you have a bunch of tests that really are going to expire soon, donate them to CVUUS and we will find people to use them before they expire.

QUESTIONS? ASK POPPY You should ALWAYS feel free to contact Poppy with any questions about rapid tests or COVID stuff.  She often avoids doing other work by staying up to date on COVID things, so she’s a useful resource.  Contact Poppy at re@cvuus.org or text/call 349-8505.  She wants to help!

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COVID TIPS from the CVUUS Safe Congregation Team 1.5.22

The COVID Omicron variant is much more contagious than past variants.  We know many vaccinated people who are catching it.  Luckily, their vaccinations and boosters are keeping them from getting really sick!  Still, the best thing is to avoid getting it if you can.

GET AVAILABLE BOOSTERS

Vaccination and boosters are by far the best way to try to avoid getting really sick if you get COVID

GET A BETTER MASK – NOT CLOTH

Get a certified, well-fitted, high filtration mask such as N95, KN95 or KF94.  

Just a cloth (doesn’t filter well enough) or surgical (doesn’t fit well enough) mask is not protective enough against Omicron.  Order using the links below.  Double mask (cloth mask over a surgical mask) while you wait for them to arrive.

Powecom KN95 white mask, ear loops – pack of 10 is $9.80 with free shipping

Powecom KN95 black mask, ear loops – pack of 10 is $11.80 with free shipping

Harley N95 white mask, 2 head bands – pack of 20 is $45 with free shipping

KIDS Powecom KN95 white mask, ear loops – pack of 10 is $12.50 with free shipping

YOU CAN USE REUSE ALL THESE MASKS!

You can reuse “disposable” masks until they are visibly worn or dirty.  BUT you should give them a 5-day break in between uses.  After you wear one, leave it somewhere unsealed (so it dries out) for 5 days – basket, hook, paper bag, etc.  Some people write numbers or do a color-coding thing to keep track of mask usage.

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CVUUS Safe Congregation Team

CVUUS has a Safe Congregation Team: Alan Moore, Will Porter, Mike Greenwood, Poppy Rees, Laura Asermily, Rev. Barnaby, Ronnie Romano.  It oversees our COVID policies and procedures.

It created the Emergency Procedures posted throughout our buildings, assigned a Safety Volunteer to monitor our doors during worship, and more. When the COVID crisis escalated in March 2020, CVUUS consulted the expertise of Paul Seward (a doctor, in addition to Will Porter) and Richard Hopkins (experienced in epidemiology). It agreed to follow the protocols of Gov. Scott and CDC. The Board formed a COVID 19 Advisory Team in April 2020 specifically to focus on legal aspects and best practices during a state of constant change. We closed the buildings to public use, urged CVUUS teams to meet online, and established a CVUUS Zoom account (see above for how to arrange an online meeting). CVUUS is committed to keeping you safe and apprised of our policies.

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A Covid Love Letter from Safe Congregation Team 1.6.21

When the Safe Congregation Team met (online) on Jan 5, no one expected we’d end up with good news to share. Two years into the pandemic, the Covid virus is spreading faster than ever in Vermont and even here in Addison County, which has long been a pacesetter in terms of safety. The team was well aware we haven’t felt it safe to meet in the Sanctuary since Christmas Eve, even with masks and limited attendance. Projections are that Covid will get worse here before it gets better.

But then we started talking about what we have to be grateful for. Our much improved capacity for meeting online. High vaccination and booster rates in the congregation and the spread of such protections against the worst risks across all generations. Our vastly improved knowledge of how to cope with the virus, including effective masking.

Each time we’ve been knocked back, we’ve learned more about bouncing back. And CVUUS has invested in devices like portable air filters that will help us. However long the double whammy of Omicron and Delta keeps us apart, we are optimistic with good reason that we will resume being together sooner and more safely once the tide turns than was the case with earlier surges.

That got us thinking positively about new ways CVUUS can help us through this rough patch and toward the brighter future. Such as stepping up support for congregants who need the types of masks shown to work best, and sharing practical advice on how they can be reused.

I told the team that sometimes I’ve rushed downtown, or even walked there, without remembering to bring any mask. Rather than take chances with my safety and that of those I encounter, I’ve swung by CVUUS and picked up one of the surgical masks we keep at the door to the Sanctuary.

That led the team to discuss ways to let all of you do what I’ve done. We’ve ordered some good quality KN95 masks that we will keep in the black mailbox at the entrance to Fenn House. They should be in place by next Monday. Grab one if you need it. We will continue to stock surgical masks as well — there are some situations where it’s wise to double up on what you wear.

When is that, you ask? Take a look at the links below on best practices for masking. And watch our Weekly Blasts and newsletters for updates to these links.

We also decided to order some home test kits because they can be hard to find, and we worry that some of you might feel they are too costly to use even if you need one. Our preliminary order as an experiment is for 10 of them that the Caring Network will be able to deliver at no cost to you (if you want to help offset the cost, you can send a contribution to the office at your convenience). These kits won’t arrive for another two weeks so watch for an announcement when they do. But you can contact Michele Lowy (mslowy@gmail.com) or Kathryn Schloff (kathrynschloff@gmail.com) if you know you will need one or more, and especially if you would like to temporarily join the Caring Network team to help administer this Covid program.

Bottom line: the name “Safe Congregation Team” can sometimes imply that we are concerned with addressing fears. But we were reminded this week that we are really here for you, like the Caring Network, to serve the Spirit of Life-Giving Love.

Blessed be, Rev. Barnaby on behalf of the Safe Congregation Team (Alan Moore, Mike Greenwood, Dr. Will Porter, Poppy Rees, and Laura Asermily)

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Snow/Severe Weather Cancellation Policy

It is impossible to predict all of the winter weather conditions that might warrant the closing of CVUUS. This is especially true for services on Sunday morning when no one would want us to be closed. In an effort to provide an approach that might enable members and friends to anticipate what to expect, the following guidelines are being offered:

1) In the event of a major snow or ice storm on a Saturday night/Sunday morning, check the office voicemail (802-388-8080) and our website www.cvuus.org

2) Don’t take any unnecessary chances. If you feel that there is significant reason to question your safety while traveling on the streets, stay home.

3) If an ice storm is in progress, stay home.

Thanks for remembering to use our mats and shoe trays to protect our beautiful sanctuary floor from mud, grit, and sticky ice melt and for checking to be sure doors are closed tightly behind you.

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CVUUS Zoom

Ask Laura (388-8080 or office@cvuus.org)  how you can request a cvuus zoom meeting.

To “claim host” once you are in: Click on your name in “participants” and scroll down below the list of names  and click “claim host” and where it asks for the “host key”, put in the 6 numbers that Laura will give you and you can find in our newsletter. You can also do this from “chat.”  In the bottom right corner of Chat, there are 3 dots. Click them. Click claim.

To allow everyone to share their screen: Click on “Security” in your bottom toolbar. Click on “share screens” and you should be all set.