Safer community app faq

Last updated: 12/17/21

What is the Safer Community app?

An overview of the app can be found here. SHIELD CU COVID testing uses the Safer Community app, which can be downloaded on your smartphone. You are notified of your test results on the app. 

How do I get the Safer Community app?

Download the app here:

Apple Store

Google Play Store

Why do I need the Safer Community app?

This app is used by the college to confirm all student and employee access eligibility for all Parkland facilities. 

How do I make sure the app is set up to work at Parkland?

It is imperative that if you have a Parkland email address, you use it to register your Safer Community app. Follow these set up instructions carefully. 

What if I already have the app but I used a phone number or non-Parkland email to register?

If you are testing weekly, do not change your user ID. If you are vaccinated, please use these app ID change instructions to update your Safer Community app user ID. 

What if I am an employee or student that doesn't have a Parkland email address?

The Safer Community app will work for you if you follow directions for your situation in the Reporting of Vaccination Status FAQ. If you are fully vaccinated and plan on using your vaccination status as your entry access to Parkland facilities, you must make sure the email address you submitted to Parkland when submitting your vaccination card matches the email address you used to register for the Safer Community app. 

Can I use a different app to display my vaccination or testing status?

Parkland College has chosen the Safer Community app (and the Safer Illinois app or Illinois app for University of Illinois affiliates) to ensure compliance with the governor's Executive Order. We are currently unable to offer other technical options for displaying vaccination or testing statuses. 

What if I refuse to use the Safer Community app?

You will need to bring your negative test results from an IDPH or medical provider (including pharmacies) or your vaccine card to the COVID Help Desk to obtain a Parkland Buildings Day Pass every day you come to campus. The COVID Help Desk is located in room B124 with an exterior entrance located near the X2 entrance.

Do I have to download my vaccination status into the app?

No. Report your vaccination status to Parkland College in the manner indicated on the Reporting of Vaccination Status FAQ. Parkland will then determine if you will receive facility access using your vaccination status. 

What information does Parkland share with this app and vice versa?

The app does not share any COVID testing information with Parkland. Parkland does not share any medical information with the app either. It only provides a list of email addresses and names of those individuals that should have the building access feature turned on.

What is the building access feature within the app?

The door checkers will look for a yellow square that appears around the QR code within the app. The yellow square appears around this box because either a person has been granted building access permissions by the college based on their fully vaccinated status or because they have had a negative SHIELD CU COVID test in the last 7 days. This yellow square will remain around the QR code on the app unless you test positive for COVID while testing at a SHIELD CU testing site. In this case, your square on the app will become red during the isolation period mandated by CUPHD. It turns back to yellow when your mandated isolation period ends. 

How are my testing results communicated through the app if I am testing at a SHIELD CU testing site?

If a person has had a negative test within the last week, the square around the QR code within the app will be yellow. If a person has not tested in the last seven days or never tested at a SHIELD CU site, the box around the QR code within their app will be orange. If a person tests positive at a SHIELD CU site, their square would turn to red during the isolation period mandated by CUPHD before turning back to yellow. No other testing data is shared.

Will Parkland College know my vaccination/testing status if I use the app?

No, Parkland is not given any test results by OSF. The yellow square system, listed in the questions above, ensures that Parkland door checkers do not know whether a person has the appropriate access to the building because they have a negative test result or are fully vaccinated. Individuals with a red box around their QR code on the app, which indicates a positive COVID test, should not come to campus. 

My test came back "invalid". What does that mean?

Invalid results typically occur when non-optimal saliva samples are submitted. Before your next test, please be sure to refrain from eating, drinking, tooth brushing, mouth washing, or tobacco use for at least one hour prior to submitting your saliva sample. For best results, it is recommended to hydrate during the morning and get tested in the afternoon. 

What if I don't get a test result?

First, try logging out and back into the Safer Community App to see if your test result has shown up. If a result does not show up after 48 hours, send an email to to determine the issue.

What if I have problems downloading or setting up the Safer Community app?

Please visit the COVID Help Desk in room B124 using the exterior entrance located near the X2 door.