Covid Policy Unitarian Society of HartfordCovid Policy At the March 8, 2022 meeting, the Board reviewed current Covid–19 statistics and agreed that, for fully vaccinated members, friends, and guests, masks may now be optional. We continue to follow CDC guidance. Our strong recommendation is that everyone coming to the Meeting House be fully vaccinated (two shots plus boost(s) in most cases). February 9, 2022 Update from Rev. Terry Cummings. IMPORTANT NEWS ABOUT SUNDAY WORSHIP AT THE UNITARIAN SOCIETY OF HARTFORD Dear members and friends, I am very pleased to share with you that the Board of Directors voted at its February 8th meeting to resume in-person services without a limit on the number of people who may attend. This means, essentially, that we are going back to the procedures that were in place before the omicron variant of the COVID 19 virus emerged in January. Those who wish to attend in-person will still be asked to wear face coverings and observe social distancing. We also strongly recommend that those in attendance be fully vaccinated (two shots plus a boost in most cases). The option to attend our service online will still be available, and we invite those who are not fully vaccinated to attend online. We would love to see you. We will not require proof of vaccination to be presented by those who attend in-person, but we would appreciate it. An informal coffee and connection hour will take place in Fellowship Hall immediately after the service, and as always our sincere thanks go to Janice Newton for organizing refreshments. It is also not too late to make a donation to last month’s Good Neighbor Offering recipient, The Village for Families and Children, by mailing a check to USH and noting “The Village” in the memo line; or please follow the instructions above for giving online. While there are favorable signs that the impact of the pandemic is lessening, the safety of our visitors and staff remains a major priority. Staff and those volunteers who work with children or who are part of the service will still be required to be fully vaccinated. The Board may make changes to the USH COVID policies in the future as necessary to respond to improving or deteriorating circumstances. Let’s hope for only good news going forward! This coming Sunday, with Valentine’s day in mind, the theme of our service will be love. In my homily I will reflect upon ways in which we can view love through a lens that is expansive and inclusive, purposeful and just. We are hoping to have arrangements for children and youth to have an opportunity to connect with each other during the service this Sunday. This is still a work in progress, however. If you are planning to attend our service with children or youth who you would like spend some time with others, please let me know by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by the end of the day on Friday. Please let me know the ages of the children and their vaccination status, and the best phone number for you to be contacted. I will let you know what arrangements are in place as soon as I can, which will depend on the number of young people we can expect. Thank you for taking the time to read this lengthy message. I am so excited that we are moving back towards a more enjoyable “new normal”. I hope to see you this Sunday. With appreciation and joy, Rev. Terry Cummings Unitarian Society of Hartford COVID-19 Staff & Volunteer Vaccination Policy Effective January 12, 2022 In keeping with the goal of providing and maintaining a workplace that is free of known hazards, the Society’s Board has adopted a COVID-19 vaccination policy (“Policy”) that requires all members of Staff, and all persons who are serving as Volunteers inside the Meeting House, to be fully vaccinated. Here is our January 2022 policy. January 4, 2022 Message from Rev. Terry Cummings and the USH Board Dear members & friends of the Unitarian Society of Hartford: Your safety and the safety of our staff and volunteers are the first priority of those who serve as leaders of your congregation. Due to the recent and dramatic uptick in Covid 19 in our area, we have decided that our January 9, 2022 service will be online only. The rapidly spreading Omicron variant appears to affect even those who are vaccinated and boosted. The service will be broadcast from the Meeting House, and the service participants will be the only persons permitted in the sanctuary. To attend the service online, please click HERE: You can also watch the Sunday service livestream at https://vimeo.com/unitariansocietyhartford. For the remainder of January, the services will also be online, but there will be an option for up to 25 fully vaccinated congregants to attend in person. If you would like to attend one or more of these services in-person, instead of online, please email Rev. Terry at email@example.com no later than 5:00pm on the Thursday before the Sunday service. Rev. Terry will respond to your email and let you know if you are one of the first 25 individuals to reserve a spot for the coming Sunday’s service. We ask that you kindly not attend the service in-person without first receiving confirmation from Rev. Terry that your pre-registration has been received. Please remember that all individuals who enter the Meeting House will be required to wear a properly fitted mask that covers their mouth and their nose. During the service, the individual speaking from the pulpit at the microphone will be permitted (but not required) to remove their mask. Again, this in-person option will be in place for the January 16, 23 and 30 services, and available only to fully vaccinated individuals. We will reassess our approach and procedure before the February 6th service. Wishing you a happy and safe New Year and hoping that we see an end to this pandemic soon. Yours in faith, Rob Spector, Board Chair Rev. Terry Cummings, Interim Minister December 31, 2021 Message from The Board and Rev. Terry Cummings Dear members & friends of the Unitarian Society of Hartford: Due to the recent uptick in Covid 19 cases in our area, we have decided that this Sunday’s service will be online only. The service will be broadcast from the Meeting House, and the participants will be in the sanctuary. To attend the service online, please click on the following link: HERE. You can also watch the Sunday service livestream at https://vimeo.com/unitariansocietyhartford or on the USH Facebook page. Wishing you a happy and safe New Year celebration. We will not meet in person at USH this Sunday, due to Covid concerns. 09-01-2021 BOARD UPDATE In keeping with current CDC guidelines, all individuals entering the Meeting House need to wear a mask. Masks are available if you do not have one; signs are posted as reminders. USH has returned to in-person, in-sanctuary worship services. Here’s what you should know: We continue to follow CDC guidance; right now, that guidance is for everyone to wear a mask indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Bring and wear your mask; if you forget, we have a supply and will give you one. The sanctuary is large enough to accommodate comfortably all who are likely to come. We can spread out, maintaining reasonable distance from each other. Currently, alternate pews are cordoned off to facilitate separation. We are continuing to livestream the service on multiple platforms… you are able to participate, even if you cannot be here in person! The capacity to feature virtual participation has been one of the (few) ongoing benefits of the pandemic. The building has been maintained at high standards, and is in great shape. Recommended cleaning protocols have been followed scrupulously. The space is well-ventilated. We expect many are hesitant to return, possibly for a very long time — and that’s perfectly fine! Stay home, and join us on Vimeo, Facebook, or Zoom (including coffee hour). However, you choose to be here, you are welcome. Post-service coffee hours will be held outside, in the Memorial Garden, if weather permits. This allows mingling at discreet distances for greater safety.