UREC emphasizes dress code with new signage

Director wants first few weeks to be a “learning period”



The WSU-UREC sees thousands of patrons every day and maintains specific dress code policies for hygiene reasons.

CARMEN JARAMILLO, Evergreen reporter

The Student Recreation Center posted new signage over the summer about their dress code after student concerns arose.

Two students spoke to the Evergreen in April about being asked to change because of their outfits. One said she felt the policy was unfair towards women.

Jeff Elbracht, director of facilities at University Recreation (UREC) said the policy exists to protect patrons from diseases that are communicable through sweat and bodily fluids. He said wearing specific types of clothing reduces the spread of disease.

“It’s really a hygiene policy is what it is,” Elbracht said.

UREC policy has not changed, he said, but the UREC has updated the policy’s language to define expectations and educate patrons.

”We really tried to clarify and help people understand why the policy exists,” Elbracht said.

Before the update, the policy just read that all patrons “must wear shirts.” Today, the policy, found on the UREC website, specifically lists the type of shirts that can be worn and what body parts they must cover.

“Covering the lower back, navel, and chest reduces the chance of disease transmission and helps keep equipment and facilities clean and functional,” the policy states.

New signage around the UREC shows examples of what types of clothing may create more direct contact between skin and equipment and what types of clothing would protect patrons.

Elbracht said although it is still early in the semester, the signage and response has been good so far.

“We want this first couple of weeks to be a learning period,” he said. “We’re not going to ask someone to leave on the first day, we want to educate people on the policy.”

UREC policies are based on industry standards Elbracht said, as well as communication with other PAC 12 recreation centers and their practices. UREC also draws from the Center for Disease Control for its recommendations on stopping the spread of disease.