Many outraged residents protest the decision on constitutional grounds
BY VIC CINE, Covert F.U.C.K member
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Xavier have announced that Fenwick Hall will be converted into a mass vaccination site. Vaccine distribution will begin next Tuesday, and Xavier students will not be able to receive the vaccine at this location.
Geoff Colemen, chair of the COVID-19 Task Force, explained the reasoning behind the program.
“The university is thrilled with the success of our current partnerships with Kroger, TriHealth and the City Health Center to distribute vaccines at Cintas. We figured we could build momentum by converting our next-largest building into another distribution site,” Colemen said.
The conversion of Fenwick suites to vaccine sites will begin on Friday. Each suite’s common area will be turned into an exam room, and one bedroom will be commandeered to house a doctor and nurse practitioner. While room layouts differ, the health care providers will always occupy the room closest to the common area.
During the medical professionals’ stays in the suites, students will be required to consolidate in the remaining bedrooms. In preparation, students are encouraged to move their belongings into a different bedroom and to clean out their mini-fridges to allow space for vaccine storage.
Physical Plant employees are preparing to distribute sleeping bags and mats to ensure the comfort of the displaced students.
The conversion of the suites will be staggered, with suites 222, 229, 304, 621 and 197 receiving their medical supplies and health care providers this week. Residents of the listed suites can expect a call from Physical Plant sometime today.
Sophomore business major Chris Holloway voiced his confusion with the decision.
“I understand that vaccinations are important, and I’m honestly glad that Xavier is helping with distribution, but I don’t understand why they had to use a residence hall as a distribution site. I mean, don’t we already have Cintas for that?” Holloway said.
Colemen also explained why the vaccines will not be administered to current residents of Fenwick Hall, noting that the COVID-19 Task Force’s ethicist determined that it would be unfair to the remainder of the student body.
“We didn’t want a situation where students in any of the other residence halls felt Fenwick residents were getting special treatment, so we made the decision to refuse vaccinations to all students at our Fenwick Hall clinic,” Colemen explained. Current students are still encouraged to receive the vaccine at the Cintas Center.
Sophomore economics major Allie Brown was enraged by the plan.
“This is outrageous. Not only are they kicking me out of my bedroom, but they’re also saying I’m not allowed to receive one of the vaccines that are being stored in my mini-fridge! Pick an injustice!” Brown lamented.
Some Fenwick residents have formed a group to protest the conversion.
The group, known as the Fenwick Unity Constitution Knights (F.U.C.K), has begun scheduling on-campus protests. The group argues that Fenwick’s conversion to a vaccination site and the subsequent refusal to administer vaccines to its residents is a violation of their constitutional rights.
Junior political science major and F.U.C.K founder, Domenico DePene, explained their position.
“What Xavier has done is a blatant violation of the Second Amendment. The United States Constitution says I have the right to bare arms. These doctors cannot prevent me from baring my shoulders, which are part of my arms, to receive this vaccine,” DePene said while pulling up the sleeves of his T-shirt.
Senior public relations major and F.U.C.K member Sophia Darmetza plans to invoke the Third Amendment.
“The Third Amendment to our glorious Constitution clearly states that soldiers cannot stay in my house without my consent in times of peace or war. Well, I don’t consent to these doctors and nurses sleeping in my dorm room,” Darmetza said, adding that she plans to sue.
Colemen was unfazed by the protests.
“Our COVID-19 Task Force actually considered the Third Amendment in our plans, which is why we specifically chose to use local health care providers rather than members of the National Guard,” he said. “These kids can protest all they want, it’s not like the administration cares what they have to say.”
Categories: Campus News