Coronavirus: Here’s who has to wear a mask in California and when

Exceptions include kids under 2 and those exercising outdoors

Vallejo Times-Herald, by Fiona Kelliher, June 19, 2020

Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a new order Thursday mandating that Californians wear masks in most public settings as the state sees an uptick in new coronavirus cases and businesses reopen.

The mandate calls for Californians to cover up while waiting in lines or indoors in public places, in various work settings and while in healthcare facilities. Here are the details:

You must wear a mask when …

  • You’re inside any public space or waiting in line to enter one
  • You’re in any healthcare setting, like a hospital, pharmacy, medical clinic, laboratory, physician or dental office, veterinary clinic or blood bank
  • You’re waiting for or riding on public transportation or while in a taxi or ride-sharing vehicle
  • You’re interacting with a member of the public at work, or working in any space visited by the public, even if you’re alone inside the workplace
  • You’re working in a setting where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution
  • You’re working in — or walking through — common areas like hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking lots
  • You’re in any room or enclosed area where other people, except for members of your own household, are present — and physical distancing is difficult
  • You’re driving or operating any public transportation or paratransit vehicle, taxi, private car service or ride-sharing vehicle and other passengers are present
  • You’re outside in a public space and physical distancing isn’t possible

 You don’t have to wear a mask if …

  • You’re a child under the age of 2
  • You have a medical, mental health, or developmental disability that prevents wearing a mask
  • You’re hard of hearing or communicating with someone hard of hearing who needs to see your face
  • Wearing a face covering would create a risk related to your work — as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines
  • You’re obtaining a service involving the nose or face and need to take off the mask to do so
  • You’re eating at a restaurant, provided you’re at least six feet away from the nearest table
  • You’re swimming, walking, hiking, bicycling, or running outside and able to maintain social distance
  • You’re incarcerated. Prisons and jails will have their own specific guidance on face masks, according to the state