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Updated Masking Policy: The Delta Variant & The J | COVID-19 Policy - Updated August 2, 2021

As you may have seen on the news, COVID-19 cases are increasing at an alarming rate. While vaccination provides significant protection against the virus, those who are unvaccinated — including those who are ineligible for vaccination currently such as many of our campers and all of our Early Learning Center students — are at risk for contracting the Delta variant of the virus, which is much more contagious. 

Hampden County has now reached the threshold the CDC recommends masking in indoor public spaces, regardless of vaccination status. Per CDC and our Medical Advisory Committee recommendations, we will be reinstating our masking policy, which will include masking of all individuals in all spaces of the Springfield JCC regardless of vaccination status, as of Thursday, August 5. 

The news isn’t all bad! The good news is, according to early data from the UK and India, with vigilant mask wearing and vaccinations, the Delta variant curve seems to peak quickly.  Like many other local businesses and organizations who have reinstated masking, we hope we won’t be wearing masks for much longer. Additionally, the J will be continuing all of it’s offerings, with an emphasis on member health and wellness, with no restrictions outside of continued masking at this time.  Please note that:

  • We are continuing our spa services with enhanced safety protocols. We have provided plastic bags so that you can store your mask safely outside of the sauna, steam room, or hot tub. Additionally, we ask that in the pool, members utilize the bags provided, and members only remove your mask when you enter the pool.  
  • Outdoor Group Exercise participants do not need to wear a mask so long as there is appropriate distancing.  

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and make adjustments accordingly. Keep up to date with our policies on SpringfieldJCC.org, call us at (413) 739-4715, and at info@SpringfieldJCC.org. With your help, patience, and kindness, we can get back to regularly scheduled programming this fall!

Enjoying the J Mask Free | COVID-19 Policy FAQ's - Updated June 4th, 2021

How do I prove my vaccination status leading up to June 20?

Starting Tuesday, June 8, you may begin bringing in your original CDC vaccination card to show the Welcome Desk staff. You MUST provide the original vaccination card; we will not accept a copy or picture of the card.

  • In order to go maskless on June 20, your CDC vaccination card will need to indicate full vaccination status by June 20. You are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after a single-dose vaccine or two weeks after a two-dose vaccination.
  • You will only need to show proof of vaccination once. We will confidentially notate your status so each time you check in our system will subtly alert staff if you are vaccinated.
  • Though you may begin providing proof of vaccination on June 8, the ability to go maskless will not begin until June 20.
  • Please be patient with our Welcome Desk staff as they navigate this operational transition and take extra care to confirm vaccination status.

 

Okay, so you know I’m vaccinated. What happens on June 20?

  • Starting June 20, you will enter the JCC with a mask on — regardless of vaccination status. Because we serve many who are ineligible for vaccination, we will require masks in all common areas of the JCC, including entering and exiting the facility.
  • If you are vaccinated and have provided proof of vaccination, you will be given a single-use wristband to wear during your time at the J. Wearing this single-use wristband alerts our Safety Ambassadors to your ability to go maskless!
  • After you receive the wristband and begin walking to your intended destination, you will continue to wear a mask walking through hallways, when using locker rooms or hallway restrooms, in addition to when entering and exiting the lobby.

 

What if I’m not vaccinated? Does anything change on June 20?

  • If you are unvaccinated, you must wear a mask at all times, in accordance with CDC and Massachusetts recommendations.
  • Because we have such a large population of vaccination-ineligible members, it is even more important when visiting the JCC to keep your mask on at all times if unvaccinated.

What else changes on June 20?

  • The indoor pool will no longer require a reservation for usage outside of camp occupancy. A maximum capacity of 45 has been set and this number will be closely monitored. The pool, which will be in much higher demand in camp, requires all of us to be respectful of our individual usage. Should the issue of maintaining maximum capacity present itself the JCC will return to a reservation system.
  • Pickleball will be expanded
  • Pickup basketball/open gym will resume.

What amenities are still unavailable?

  • The sauna and jacuzzis in the men’s and women’s locker rooms will reopen on August 1.

What if infection rates rise?

  • The JCC has been advised by our Medical Advisory Committee to closely monitor the 14-day average infection rate. If a certain threshold is reached, the JCC will adjust its policies. We will communicate these changes in advance of the change taking place.

‘Frozen’ Membership Program Status Update
Springfield JCC members who chose to temporarily freeze their membership accounts will have their memberships automatically reactivated on June 15, 2021. If you have a credit card on file, it will be charged at this time. If you wish to cancel your membership, please call me by June 10 at 413.739.4715. A reminder that once reactivated, refunds will not be given for non-use of the facility and/or negligence to request a change of membership status.

August 26, 2021

Dear Springfield JCC Members:

Over the past 18 months, the JCC — as many other in-person service providers — has been challenged significantly by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our commitment to our community inspired us to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances due to COVID-19. 
 
Increased safety measures have been at the forefront of our minds these past weeks, as the Delta variant began spreading in our community. Unlike the initial COVID-19 wave when our JCC followed state and local mandates related to closures and mitigation efforts, we are now relying on our values, guidance from the CDC, and our Medical Advisory Committee to chart a path forward. In accordance with our values, the JCC did not wait for a local or state-issued mandate around indoor mask wearing. We independently reinstituted that practice in early August as COVID-19 transmission rates grew in our area.  
 
While masking is one of the most effective ways of preventing transmission of COVID-19, our professional staff and lay volunteers wanted to do more to ensure the safety of our community. Thus, the JCC is mandating that all JCC employees must be vaccinated by October 8, 2021 as a condition of continued employment. This policy was unanimously passed by the JCC Board of Directors.
 
Additionally, the JCC’s current masking policy for members and staff and all visitors to the J, regardless of vaccination status, will remain in place until transmission levels reach a lower threshold. Many of our youngest members remain vulnerable to the virus, given those under the age of 12 are ineligible for vaccination. As many other JCCs across the country, we see it as our obligation to act in ways which protect the children in our families, in our JCCs and in our communities at the very least until they are able to protect themselves.
 
The JCC will continue to strive to be part of a community-oriented solution. We believe that by doing what is right our community will remain strong and steadfast in the weeks, months and years to come.
 
Thank you for your continued support of our JCC.
Samantha Dubrinksy, CEO, Springfield JCC
Rich Goldstein, President, Board of Directors, Springfield JCC

Member Memo | June 4, 2021

June 4, 2021

Dear Springfield JCC Members:

We are looking forward to Sunday, June 20 when we begin to relax our COVID-19 policies! While our entire community works to navigate this new phase, we want you to rest assured that we have leaned heavily on our Medical Advisory Committee to help us craft new policies. We feel confident in our approach, which is detailed below.

In this notice are important steps and procedures that we will require our members to follow in order to use our services. Our updated policies are in line with new CDC and Massachusetts guidance, which allow vaccinated members to be unmasked.

I also want to assure you that while we are requiring our members to follow specific protocols, our staff will be following stringent guidelines as well. Just as members, staff who desire to go maskless are required to submit proof of vaccination. The JCC will be closely monitoring this policy through the implementation of JCC Safety Ambassadors, whose sole job is to ensure compliance.

Because the JCC is guided by the mission of nourishing and protecting our community’s wellbeing, we feel it is our responsibility to take actions that emphasize our commitment to public health for ALL of our members — including our tiniest members who aren’t eligible for vaccination yet. We know that you being a part of our community means you understand compromise is sometimes necessary when it comes to the wellbeing of the entire community. The JCC respects and appreciates your commitment to these values, especially during this time.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind you that many who are vaccinated are not ready to be maskless. If you see someone inside the JCC with a mask on, that does not mean they are unvaccinated. Please understand that circumstances vary and approach masked members with kindness.

If you have not yet been vaccinated, we are offering a vaccine clinic to the broader community on Wednesday, June 16 from 3-6 pm at no cost. Please see below for more details. We want to provide you with an opportunity to go maskless, if you haven’t yet had one!

Sam Dubrinsky | CEO, Springfield JCC

Member Memo | May 28, 2021

May 28, 2021

Dear Springfield JCC Members,

Last week, we asked you to fill out a survey about your comfort-level around the updated guidance issued by Massachusetts in response to new CDC guidelines. We had an overwhelming response to our survey, which provided us with helpful insight into your excitement and reservations. Ninety-six percent of the members who filled out our survey are vaccinated and over 50% of those vaccinated said they are willing to be in a public space without a mask.

In response to your feedback, and with guidance from our Medical Advisory Committee, we are updating our COVID-19 policies and procedures, which will take effect on Sunday, June 20. We understand that each member has unique circumstances that may affect their feelings about the new guidelines. The JCC feels confident in our approach, which is in line with CDC and state guidelines, and we will continue to evaluate and assess protocols as we move through this next — and final — reopening phase together. Below you will find a summary of the new policies, which will be outlined in more detail as we near Sunday, June 20.

We know you are eager to see changes reflected in our policies sooner rather than later. Our community is made up of diverse populations and some of our programs are governed by agencies such as the Department of Public Health and Department of Early Education & Care, which have outlined more stringent requirements, coinciding with the expiration of Massachusetts’ State of Emergency. In an effort to protect our entire community — even our youngest members who are not eligible for vaccination — we will be waiting until June 20 to implement the below.

Please note that these changes do not affect the Early Learning Center, Elementary, or Camp programs. Additionally, the JCC will be carefully monitoring infection rates of the surrounding areas and make changes to the below as needed.

Vaccinated members will be allowed to take off their masks in designated areas, after showing proof of vaccination. Members will provide the JCC with proof of vaccination and will be given a wristband to wear during their time at the J, which allows staff to monitor which members can be maskless.

Unvaccinated members must remain masked at all times inside the JCC and when outdoors at times social distancing cannot be maintained.

Masks are required to be worn by all members as they enter/exit the facility, walk through hallways and common areas, using hallway restrooms, and at all times in locker rooms (unless showering) regardless of vaccination status.

Fitness equipment will all be moved back to the Cybex room, but social distancing is still required in all areas. Only equipment that is six feet apart will be eligible for use and those ineligible will be marked with signage.

Temperature checks and health screenings are no longer required. Though health screenings are no longer required after June 20, we are following the Massachusetts Travel Advisory policy and will require unvaccinated members who have traveled to wait 72 hours after their arrival back in the state before testing out of the 10-day quarantine requirement. For our families with children under the age of 10 participating in youth programs, you will receive communication directly from the director of the program regarding travel policy.

Basketball will resume and pickleball will be expanded, with capacity limits consistent with spacing requirements.

More information on the above will be sent to you over the next few weeks, including how to provide proof of vaccination. We’ll be communicating with you via email, social media and good ol’ fashioned snail mail.

We look forward to this new step in our collective journeys forward.

Thank you,

Sam Dubrinsky, CEO

Health & Wellness Protocols and Registrations

General

Walk-ins welcome for to use our fitness equipment.

Reservations are required for the pool, group exercise, pickleball, and basketball. View the schedules and make your reservations today with SignUpGenius.

  1. Go to SignUpGenius.com and create an account using the same email address you use for Springfield JCC e-newsletters and input a new password.
  2. You will see “Sign Ups I’ve Been Invited To.”
  3. Click to sign up for outdoor group exercise classes, pickleball, basketball, lap swim, family swim lane, or to use the baby pool.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Group Exercise

Reservations are required for group exercise. Click here to view our group exercise schedule. Make your reservations today with SignUpGenius.

  1. Go to SignUpGenius.com and create an account using the same email address you use for Springfield JCC e-newsletters and input a new password.
  2. You will see “Sign Ups I’ve Been Invited To.”
  3. Click to sign up for outdoor group exercise classes, pickleball, basketball, lap swim, family swim lane, or to use the baby pool.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Outdoor Fitness

Reservations are required for our outdoor fitness classes. Use SignUpGenius to view our outdoor fitness schedule and reserve your spot.

  1. Go to SignUpGenius.com and create an account using the same email address you use for Springfield JCC e-newsletters and input a new password.
  2. You will see “Sign Ups I’ve Been Invited To.”
  3. Click to sign up for outdoor group exercise classes, pickleball, basketball, lap swim, family swim lane, or to use the baby pool.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Personal Training

Use SignUpGenius to reserve your spot for personal training.

  1. Go to SignUpGenius.com and create an account using the same email address you use for Springfield JCC e-newsletters and input a new password.
  2. You will see “Sign Ups I’ve Been Invited To.”
  3. Click to sign up for outdoor group exercise classes, pickleball, basketball, lap swim, family swim lane, or to use the baby pool.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Locker Room Protocols

Locker Rooms Protocols:
  • J Members will enter the main entrance of the J (Converse Street parking lot, green awning)
  • Face covering and social distance required
  • Swimmers will access pool from the locker room with their mask on until entering the pool
  • Spa members will resume towel service ($1 per day if you are not a spa member)
  • Face covering required in locker room except when showering
  • Maximum of 20 members at a time in the locker room
  • Do not linger in the locker room
  • Disinfecting wipes are available for you
  • When the J Health & Wellness Center closes, locker rooms will close to allow for proper cleaning and overnight disinfecting. Please plan your visit accordingly.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Virtual Fitness Schedule

Reservations are required for our virtual fitness classes. Click here to view our virtual group exercise schedule. Make your reservations today with SignUpGenius.

  1. Go to SignUpGenius.com and create an account using the same email address you use for Springfield JCC e-newsletters and input a new password.
  2. You will see “Sign Ups I’ve Been Invited To.”
  3. Click to sign up for outdoor group exercise classes, pickleball, basketball, lap swim, family swim lane, or to use the baby pool.

Questions? Email Susan Whirty.

Springfield JCC Virtual Fitness Disclaimer:
Springfield JCC video content is for entertainment only. The Springfield JCC is not a medical organization and its instructors or staff cannot provide medical advice or diagnosis.

Physical exercise in all forms, even without equipment, is a strenuous physical activity. As such, you should consult your physician or other health care professional before starting this fitness program or any other fitness program to determine if it is right for you. If you are predisposed to a medical condition that may be worsened by physical exercise, please do not start this fitness program. Do not start this fitness program if your physician or health care provider advises against it. If you experience faintness, dizziness, pain or shortness of breath at any time while exercising you should stop immediately. If you think you are having a medical or health emergency, call your health care professional, or 911 immediately.

Programming at the J

Adult & Cultural Programming

Our spring Life Lessons adult education class offerings are a mix of socially-distanced in-person classes and virtual programming. We’re currently in the process of planning outdoor programs for late spring. Stay tuned for more details!

All scheduled Literatour and Book Fest in Your Living Room author events are virtual and will take place on Zoom.

Questions? Contact Bev Nadler.

Youth Programming

Youth recreation is back! Starting the week of April 26, the J will be offering after-school youth sport programs and swim lessons. Click here for full details. Questions? Contact Kim O’Neill.

The J’s Early Learning Center and Kids Space programs are currently accepting applications for 2021-2022 school year and are eagerly awaiting the opportunity to be able to add more students to their programs as soon as the CDC allows it. Questions? Contact Jennifer McGowan (Early Learning Center) or Maureen Marchacos (Kids Space).

Our Kehillah Department provides quality social, recreational, and enrichment programs for children with special needs. We’re currently offering hybrid in-person and virtual programs in order to accommodate everyone’s needs. Click here for a list of our current Kehillah youth programs. Questions? Contact Tina Edwards.

Kehillah (Special Needs) Programming

Our Kehillah Department provides quality social, recreational, and enrichment programs for children, teens, and adults with special needs. We’re currently offering hybrid in-person and virtual programs in order to accommodate everyone’s needs.

Click here for a list of our current Kehillah youth programs.
Click here for a list of our current Kehillah programs for teens and adults.
Click here for more information on Project R.I.D.E.
Click here for more information on Adaptive Aquatics.

Questions? Contact Tina Edwards.

J Camp

It’s the same camp you’ve always loved, but this time with masks, social distancing, and sanitizer! Our 2021 summer camp program runs from June 21 through August 20.

Click here for more information.
Click here to register.

Questions? Contact Kyle Andolina.

Community Support

Local Emergency Food Drive: Spearheaded by Rachel’s Table.

Rachel’s Table: Outrun Hunger has gone virtual.

American Red Cross: Donate Blood

Home Projects Ideas to Support Front Line Workers:

  • Decorate hearts and place them in your window
  • Decorate your driveway with chalk
  • Send meals to staff at a local hospital