University of Alabama issues sanctions to students for COVID social distancing violations

UA students disciplined for disobeying COVID-19 guidelines

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - When school started nearly three weeks ago, The University of Alabama warned students there would be consequences for not obeying COVID-19 guidelines. This week the University announced it has issued 639 individual student sanctions since September 8th for violating temporary rules that restrict access in some buildings and prohibit gatherings.

Thirty-three students have been suspended from campus while their student conduct cases are going through due process.

“It’s just kind of shocking honestly. I mean you would think people would be a little more mindful with everything going on,” Justin Wilson expressed.

One unnamed student group faces suspension and three others received COVID-related sanctions. New rules were handed down on August 21st to slow the spread of coronavirus on and off-campus. UA warned that the hosts of gatherings faced heightened consequences even for a first offense. Serious and repeated violations would result in suspension.

“That’s a good thing. I think it might help a little bit. But once you kind of get into the bars it’s a different story. Once you go to some of these off-campus parties, a lot of these kids aren’t going to listen to this stuff,” Alex Leaf said.

Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox supports the penalties. “I think it speaks to seriousness of which we are all taking coronavirus. And certainly just three weeks ago were on the verge of having to shut down the University campus and go to virtual learning,” Maddox said.

A school spokeswoman also added that it’s too early to say if students suspended will get a refund.

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