By: KDKA-TV News Staff

INDIANA, Pa. (KDKA) – IUP is requiring everyone to wear masks indoors in public spaces on campus regardless of vaccination status.

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The new mask policy went into effect Tuesday morning. IUP says masking outdoors won’t be required, and at this time, neither will indoor social distancing.

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The university pointed to the CDC’s guidance for colleges and Indiana County’s lower vaccination rate as reasons for the decision. Citing CDC data, IUP says Indiana County’s vaccination rate among adults is 35% compared to the state’s average of 53% and the national average of 51%.

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IUP says while it can’t legally require COVID-19 vaccinations, it’s joining other state schools and the State System of Higher Education Board of Governors in strongly encouraging people to get vaccinated.