The NGS Board recently approved a change to the COVID-19 policy regarding the vaccination admission option and has added additional information about the daily negative test admission option. The updated language is below, but to summarize: proof of vaccination only requires the initial primary series from your vaccine manufacturer.
We have also included information on how to get free COVID-19 tests.
COVID-19 Policies and Liability Waiver
Effective 12 December 2022. Amended 27 March 2023, in blue below.
Please be advised that NGS policy requires all registrants to affirm the following.
By registering for and attending the National Genealogical Society’s (NGS) Family History Conference, I agree to abide by:
1. NGS policy requires either of the two following options for admission.
(a) Upon initial check-in, I provide identification and proof of completing the primary COVID-19 vaccine series (which varies by manufacturer). The requirement for booster shots has been lifted.
(b) Daily, I provide identification and proof of a negative COVID-19 rapid-result test (commonly called an “at home” test) taken within twenty-four hours of entering that day’s convention. Proof of a daily negative test includes (a) bringing a cell phone photograph of a negative test taken within 24-hours of admission; such photographs may be examined for metadata information; OR (b) bringing a negative test sample (the plastic or cardboard test cartridge) for a test taken within the previous 24-hours with you to the convention center, where upon review, it will be thrown away.
Information on how to receive free COVID-19 tests is available at https://consumer.ftc.gov/consumer-alerts/2022/12/heres-where-get-free-covid-tests. Please be aware the federal Public Health Emergency for COVID-19 is expected to expire at the end of the day on May 11, 2023. This may affect the free availability of tests. NGS may have limited test kits available on a first-come, first-served basis.
2. Masks are recommended but not required except for lecture rooms for specific speakers who require masks. Information about sessions requiring masks will be inserted in the program and on the doors of those sessions.
3. All health and safety guidelines and recommendations promulgated by federal, state, and local government agencies and officials, NGS, and the event venue. This includes but is not limited to submitting to restrictions set in place during the event that consist of providing identification and proof of primary vaccination series and OR a daily test, and wearing a mask when required in indoor public areas, and may include engaging in appropriate physical distancing, and restrictions on certain activities that carry higher COVID-19-related risk, such as congregating in large private gatherings or attending off-site events in crowded facilities.
I further agree, pursuant to the rules of the Greater Richmond Convention Center, that I will not attend the Family History Conference in person if I feel sick or am experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms (including fever, cough, and shortness of breath); have been diagnosed with, or believe to have contracted, COVID-19 unless I have had no fever for 72 hours (without use of medicine) and 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared; or if I have not been fully vaccinated and have been in known contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 within the past 14 days.
Additionally, I understand that travel to and participation in events may increase the risk of exposure to communicable diseases or other unforeseen dangers. I HEREBY RELEASE, WAIVE AND FOREVER DISCHARGE ANY AND ALL LIABILITY, CLAIMS, AND DEMANDS OF WHATEVER KIND OR NATURE AGAINST NGS AND ITS AFFILIATED PARTNERS AND SPONSORS, INCLUDING IN EACH CASE, WITHOUT LIMITATION, THEIR DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, VOLUNTEERS, AND AGENTS (THE “RELEASED PARTIES”), EITHER IN LAW OR IN EQUITY, TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMISSIBLE BY LAW, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO DAMAGES OR LOSSES CAUSED BY THE NEGLIGENCE, FAULT OR CONDUCT OF ANY KIND ON THE PART OF THE RELEASED PARTIES, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO DEATH, BODILY INJURY, ILLNESS, ECONOMIC LOSS OR OUT OF POCKET EXPENSES, OR LOSS OR DAMAGE TO PROPERTY, WHICH I, MY HEIRS, ASSIGNEES, NEXT OF KIN AND/OR LEGALLY APPOINTED OR DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVES, MAY HAVE OR WHICH MAY HEREINAFTER ACCRUE ON MY BEHALF, WHICH ARISE OR MAY HEREAFTER ARISE FROM MY PARTICIPATION WITH THE NGS FAMILY HISTORY CONFERENCE.
NGS will continue to monitor the changing guidelines for the COVID-19 pandemic and will update policies as needed.