- Cancellation of upcoming in-person assemblies
- Cancellation of in-person small group activities
- Awareness of personal strategies to minimize risk of spread
- Social support within our community in safe ways
If recommendations change, we will communicate our response via existing channels of Facebook, Twitter, Meetup, and email newsletter, as well as update this blog post accordingly.
Edit (2020-03-23): SAA no longer supports any in-person small group activities at this time.
Our monthly in-person Sunday Assemblies, which are our largest gatherings, are cancelled until further notice. We are considering streaming alternatives.
Edit (2020-03-23): In-person small group events are cancelled until further notice.
We encourage following CDC guidelines for community organizations and for event spaces and gatherings. We encourage digital alternatives to in-person gatherings via video conferencing and are happy to facilitate.
In the future, if event hosts still wish to hold their events in-person during this time, we require appropriate mitigation strategies. These include:
- Limiting attendance to a maximum of 10 people
- Disinfecting tables, counters, door handles, and other common surfaces
- Encouraging soap and water hand washing (or hand sanitizer) as much as possible
- Having face masks available for anyone who shows signs of illness (before asking them to leave)
- Knowing the symptoms of COVID-19
- Separating seating to minimize extended close contact
- Limiting hugs or hand shakes, replacing with fist bumps or elbow knocks
- Preparing food only under the above conditions
These requirements will not apply to all events in the same way, especially considering the venue (indoors, outdoors) and activity. We will work with event hosts to find appropriate solutions if possible.
We encourage CDC-recommended practices to prevent illness. We also encourage all assemblers to observe their own health and stay home as much as possible, especially if sick or if you are in a high-risk group.
If you are showing signs of illness, please be accepting of the necessity to leave an in-person event if asked. This will not be a judgment on you; it is a safety precaution for our members, especially those in high-risk groups.
Sunday Assembly is not just about the gatherings big and small; it’s a support network. Please reach out to our community if you need or can offer support during this time. Check out Contact & Links page for our Facebook group, Meetup, and more.
Support may range from providing needed supplies to offering an ear to listen about concerns. Please offer that support safely, following guidelines shared above.
During these times, connecting virtually will be especially valuable. We are engaged in digital ways of creating community.
Further Reading & Thoughts
These 2 concepts provide value in understanding the strategies at work in enacting CDC and other recommendations:
- “Flattening the Curve” – acting preemptively reduces the most severe strain on our healthcare system
- “Social Distancing” – practical strategies for preventing spread while maintaining connection
Finally, we appreciated these thoughts from Alexis Record of Sunday Assembly San Diego:
“When I first joined Sunday Assembly I was excited to end social isolation by helping to create a healthy non-religious community together with all of you. Hearing scientists and medical professionals talk about social distancing can feel like the antithesis to that goal. I’ve had some wise people correct that view. Instead, what we do today is a communal act of social solidarity. We are flattening the curve to give our medical staff relief, providing beds for those who need them, and lessening the burden on our institutions.
“We want to send a clear message that we value our vulnerable assemblers. Those of us who are low-risk will do our part to mitigate the spread of this disease. Because that’s what community does. We don’t need to physically assemble to do it.”
Questions can be routed through the Contact page on this site or to our social media, which is also listed there. Comments here are also welcome.