Brown University In Person Event Policies

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Events at Brown are a vital aspect of the Brown community. It is more important than ever that we support opportunities for the community to come together, both in person and remotely. While in person events for the fall will need to be limited in scope and follow guidelines to prioritize safety in these uncertain times, it is important that even in small numbers, members of the community can gather together. Below is a list of policies, designed to both engage in community building in person, while also limiting risk and prioritizing the safety of community members. The policies were developed by a committee made up event planning stakeholders and included representation from SAO, Admission, Residential Life, the University Scheduling office, Office of University Event and Conference Services, Advancement, Orientation and First Year Programs, University Communications, Environmental Health and Safety, Media Services, Campus Life, Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity, and others on a consulting basis. 

Please note that these policies will be updated and changed if needed based on the most current public health guidance and RI regulations if necessary to be compliant or if the situation changes for any reason that might impact community safety. This is a fluid situation and any changes will be reflected in this document.   

Principles for University Events

  • Ensure the safety and well-being of all students and guests, vendors, staff, faculty, and others who are engaged in planning, leading, supporting and participating in events at Brown, both off campus and on.

  • Foster a sense of community by supporting an array of in person engagement on campus while maintaining safety guidelines. 

  • Minimize health risks through de-densified and virtual events that promote and ensure appropriate social distancing and follow all current and applicable public health guidance.

  • Maximize independence and autonomy of event planners with clear and consistent public health guidance that all members of the community can easily and effectively follow.

  • Actively support flexibility for event planners to develop plans and approaches specific to their activities in a manner consistent with overall policy and all State of Rhode Island public health guidance and regulations.

  • Ensure appropriate consequences for lack of compliance and easily accessible reporting mechanisms for health and safety concerns.

 Event Policies

  •  All student organization meetings, events, and activities must be held remotely. 

  • If the event can accomplish its goal remotely, it should be held remotely. If in person engagement is vital to the event, the below guidelines should be followed. 

  • In person events must be staffed by Brown University faculty or staff members who are participating in the Brown testing program as designated by their return to work plan. 

  • Anyone that is experiencing any Covid like symptoms should not attend any in person event. 

  • Indoor events can have a max capacity of 25 people (in spaces that are large enough for social distancing) including event hosts and event staff as long as this number is still under the allowed indoor maximum capacity for the State of Rhode Island. While we will follow state guidelines and not exceed max capacities, Brown may determine capacities that are lower than allowed maximums to decrease risk.

  • Outdoor events can have a max capacity of 125 people (on spaces that are large enough for social distancing) including event hosts and event staff as long as this number is still under the allowed outdoor maximum capacity for the State of Rhode Island. While we will follow state guidelines and not exceed max capacities, Brown may determine capacities that are lower than allowed maximums to decrease risk.

  • Events can not take place in lobby spaces.

  • Events must ensure three feet of distance between everyone that is present at all times. This includes attendees, staff, organizers, performers, etc.

  • Face coverings must be worn indoors by all event attendees and hosts, staff, unless there is an approved medical exemption.

  • There can be no shared items or equipment at events, including but not limited to, writing utensils, microphones, podiums, books etc.

  • Simulcast locations for events will not be allowed due very limited available space.

  • Event organizers are responsible for developing staffing plans to ensure capacity is counted and social distancing is enforced. Staff in SAO (for student events) and University Event and Conference Services (for departmental and University events) are happy to talk through plans with event organizers if that is helpful. 

  • Events at this time are only permitted on campus, no off-campus events will be permitted. 

  • Rehearsals and performances will be allowed if face coverings can be worn by all performers throughout the full event and social distancing can be enforced for the audience and performers. Instruments that require the removal of masks are not permitted at events/activities/meetings.

  • Rehearsals and performances that involve singing can be held if masks can remain on at all times and must be held outdoors. Microphones cannot be shared. Guidance on this is still being reviewed and updates to this part of the policy will be posted here. 

  • All event attendees must be a member of the Brown community (faculty, staff, or student enrolled in the current semester). No guests are permitted to attend. Students who are not currently enrolled for the semester that the event is taking place should not attend events in person in order to maintain de-densification of the campus. 

  • Guest speakers and performers are not permitted to be invited to campus at this time but staff in SAO and University Events are available to help plan remote engagement with off campus guests and speakers. 

  • Events can only take place in approved event venues and must be reserved and approved through University Scheduling or the space manager for spaces not in 25 Live. 

  • Food and Beverages are only permitted if individually packaged and need to be grab and go. Eating or drinking at events is not permitted. 

Accountability Measures

  • All members of the Brown community are responsible for all policies listed in this document. It is their responsibility to develop plans to ensure that the policies are followed, and to enforce them at their event. Staff in SAO and University Event and Conference Services are ready and available to help groups determine staffing and enforcement plans.

Please see this FAQ page for more information related to student organizations.

Updated 2/11/21