In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, leadership from the Society of California Archivists (SCA), Conference of Inter-Mountain Archivists (CIMA), Northwest Archivists (NWA), and Society of Rocky Mountain Archivists (SRMA) met earlier this week to discuss the status of the upcoming 2020 Western Archivists Meeting (WAM) being held in San Francisco from April 22nd - 25th. At this point in time, WAM has not been cancelled. However, legal counsel is reviewing our hotel contract to determine if either cancellation or postponement are viable options. An update on this will be circulated by March 20th. The health and safety of our members is of the utmost importance, and we are following recommendations from scientific and health agencies to ensure the necessary precautions are in place for WAM. We have coordinated with the hotel on the need for enhanced food handling/service to reduce the risk of contamination and also on the availability of hand sanitizer stations/disinfectant wipes at the venue for attendees. WAM will also be a handshake/hug free conference where smiles, nods, and waves will be encouraged. Lastly, we are exploring the feasibility of providing options for remote presentations in the event a presenter is unable to attend the conference. Live streaming and recordings of the conference will not be made available, though, as the cost to do so is prohibitive. Given that WAM is still more than five weeks away, our WAM registration refund/cancellation policy remains in effect. Full refunds for cancellations are available until April 1st, with 50% refunds offered through April 14th. Unfortunately, given our contractual obligations with the hotel we are unable to offer full refunds for cancellations made on or after April 15th. In the event the conference is cancelled, full refunds will be issued to all registrants. The COVID-19 outbreak is a constantly changing and evolving public health situation that we’ll continue to closely monitor, including recommendations from government health agencies and recommendations/policies from western region agencies, colleges and universities. We appreciate your patience and understanding during these uncertain times, and we’ll be sure to provide status updates on WAM as new information becomes available. Please feel free to reach out to the Local Arrangements Committee, firstname.lastname@example.org, with any questions and/or concerns that you may have.
Eric Milenkiewicz (SCA President)
Erika Castaño (CIMA President)
Max Johnson (NWA President)
Heather Bowden (SRMA President)