Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday ordered all Californians to wear face coverings while in public or high-risk settings, including when shopping, taking public transit or seeking medical care, following growing concerns that an increase in coronavirus cases has been caused by residents failing to voluntarily take that precaution.
Newsom's order comes a week after Orange County rescinded a requirement for residents to wear masks and as other counties across California are debating whether to join other local jurisdictions in mandating face coverings. The Newsom administration did not address how the new requirement will be enforced or if Californians who violate the order will be subject to citations or other penalties.
"Simply put, we are seeing too many people with faces uncovered — putting at risk the real progress we have made in fighting the disease," Newsom said in a statement. "California's strategy to restart the economy and get people back to work will only be successful if people act safely and follow health recommendations. That means wearing a face covering, washing your hands and practicing physical distancing."
See Friday's Union Democrat for more information on the mask order.