Low Contact Community Engagement


Critical planning, design, and development projects need to move forward, even under difficult circumstances. How can we create opportunities for people to weigh in on projects that affect their neighborhoods, while maintaining a safe distance and reducing the risk of illness?
A new publication, Guidelines for Low Contact Community Engagement, collects ideas and best practices that can be used now and as conditions begin to return to normal. The guidelines are organized into three phases:

  • Emerging from Lockdown: for use when physical distancing and stay-at-home recommendations are in place.
  • Living with COVID: for use when stay-at-home restrictions are lifted but physical distancing is still necessary.
  • A New Normal: for use as conditions gradually return to normal, recognizing that the challenges of COVID -19 may be with us for a long time and traditional community engagement practices will need to change to protect the health and safety of participants.




The guidelines were developed in partnership with Bike Cleveland and Clevelanders in Motion, with funding from Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through the Cuyahoga County Board of Health.

The guidelines are a work in progress, intended to help public agencies and nonprofit organizations navigate the community engagement process under unprecedented public health challenges. We welcome additional ideas for low-contact community engagement. We invite you to share what’s working for your community with our team at cudc@kent.edu.

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