On August 2nd, seven Bay Area counties and the city of Berkeley joined the ranks of Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Yolo counties in issuing local ordinances that reinstitute indoor masking mandates. The orders require all individuals, regardless of vaccination status, to wear face coverings when indoors in public settings, with limited exceptions, beginning on August 3rd.
The following counties are included in the joint mandate:
- Contra Costa
- San Francisco
- San Mateo
- Santa Clara
The City of Berkeley, which runs its own public health agency, also joined in the mandated mask orders.
Under the revised orders everyone, including fully vaccinated individuals are required to wear face coverings indoors in public settings, including but not limited to office settings. The mandates require businesses to implement the indoor face-covering order and encourage employers to make available face coverings to all individuals entering their businesses.
There are some exemptions in the orders, such as under the San Francisco order, which generally allows individuals to remove face coverings indoors for the following reasons:
- Indoor public settings while alone or with members of the same household
- When actively eating or drinking
- In a personal motor vehicle alone or with members of the same household
- Live or recorded performances or professional sports
- Religious gatherings
- Personal services such as facials only while actively receiving service
- Certain recreational sports such as swimming
While the California Department of Public Health, is currently only recommending universal masking indoors, employers should check the status of the local county and city health orders if they are uncertain about the requirements for masking in areas they operate. The state of California COVID-19 homepage provides links to all county and city public health departments.
Jackson Lewis will continue to track COVID-19 related statutes and ordinances around the state of California. If you have questions about masks in the workplace or related issues, contact a Jackson Lewis attorney to discuss.