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July 21, 2020

California Masks and Face Coverings Guidance

Wearing a mask is now required statewide in California when in high-risk situations. Employers are required to provide face coverings for workers or reimburse them for the reasonable costs of obtaining them. The California Department of Public Health has released guidance for the use of face covering.

Who needs a mask?

  • Anyone going outside their home
  • Workers in customer-facing industries
  • Workers in offices, factories, or any group setting
  • Doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals
  • Other workers, as dictated by industry guidance

Who shouldn’t wear a mask?

  • Children under 2 years old
  • Anyone with respiratory issues where it would impede their breathing
  • Anyone unable to remove the mask without help
  • Anyone with a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that does not allow them to wear a mask

See a complete list of who should not wear a mask.

When should you wear a mask?

You should wear a mask or face covering whenever you’ll be around someone you don’t live with, including:

  • In any indoor public space
  • When waiting in line
  • When getting health care
  • On public transportation or when ride-sharing
  • At work, when near others or moving through common areas 
  • Outdoors, if you can’t stay 6 feet away from others

When can you take off your mask?

There are times when it’s okay to take your mask off when you’re away from home, such as:

  • When eating or drinking
  • If a hearing-impaired person needs to read your lips
  • If wearing a face covering imposes a risk to you at work – for example, if it could get caught in machinery
  • When you’re not sharing a common area, room or enclosed space with others
  • When you are getting a service to the nose or face
  • When outdoors in public and can stay six feet from others

You should replace the mask as soon as you can after these activities to reduce the risk of infection.

It is recommended that members post a copy of the new poster at the worksite and provide it to employees during safety meetings. It may also be included in the company’s Injury and Illness Prevention Program.

Click here for additional advice about masks and face coverings.

Click here for additional COVID-19 related resources.