California will lift its requirement for students and staff to wear masks indoors in schools at 11:59 p.m. March 11, making face masks “recommended” but not mandatory, Governor Gavin Newsom announced on Monday.
From Tuesday, meanwhile, the state will also lift its requirement for unvaccinated people to wear masks in most indoor areas, but masks will be “highly recommended” indoors. Masks will also continue to be required for everyone in places such as healthcare facilities, transit centers, airports, public transport, penitentiaries and homeless shelters and long-term care facilities.
“California continues to adapt our policies based on the latest data and science, applying what we have learned over the past two years to guide our response to the pandemic,” Newsom said in a statement. “Masks are an effective tool for minimizing the spread of the virus and future variants, especially when transmission rates are high. “We can not predict the future of the virus, but we are better prepared for it and will continue to take science-based measures to keep California moving forward.”
According to the schedule announced on Monday, the state will no longer impose the use of masks indoors on school campuses from March 12. However, individual school districts or counties will have the option of retaining local requirements if they deem it necessary.
It was not immediately clear whether Los Angeles County – which has taken a conservative approach throughout the pandemic to easing public health rules – would align with the state and lift the school coverage requirement. The county has already abolished the rule of using the mask outdoors in schools and childcare centers.
The governors of Oregon and Washington joined Newsom in Monday’s announcement, with these states also announcing the lifting of indoor mask requirements from 11:59 p.m. March 11 – effectively ending face-covering rules for the entire West Coast.
The announcement comes after Friday’s change of direction from US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which adopted new standards that rely heavily on COVID hospital numbers to determine whether masks should be worn. These new standards – while removing mask recommendations for much of the country – continue to classify Los Angeles and San Diego counties as “high” virus activity and encourage people to continue wearing masks. .
According to the new CDC guidance, both Orange and Riverside counties belong to the “middle” category, so federal guidance does not require the use of a mask.
Despite California lifting the mask requirement indoors, Los Angeles County continues to require face masks in most indoor settings. However, the county allows vaccinated individuals to remove their masks indoors where all attendees are screened for either COVID vaccination or a recent negative test.
–City News Service, Inc.
CA Mask Mandate Ending for Indoor Schools March 11; Everywhere Else on Tuesday Source link CA Mask Mandate Ending for Indoor Schools March 11; Everywhere Else on Tuesday