California Joins Other States Requiring Mask Regardless Of Vaccine Status
The State of California is reimposing an indoor mask mandate that will apply to everyone, regardless of vaccination status.
Due to an increase in COVID-19 cases in the state since Thanksgiving, California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly announced the policy would be reinstated.
“This is a critical time,” Ghaly said Monday. “We have a tool we know has worked and can work. We are proactively putting this tool of universal indoor masking in place to ensure we get through a time of joy and hope without a darker cloud of despair. Californians have done this before, and we believe we can do it again.”
The updated mask mandate is set to take effect on Wednesday will expire on Jan. 15. the mandate will apply to everyone, regardless of vaccination status.
The news comes as the omicron variant has officially hit the state, with California reporting 18 cases of the variant as of Friday.
Additional restrictions are being introduced for those who are unvaccinated, requiring unvaccinated individuals to provide proof of a negative antigen test within 24 hours or a negative PCR test within 48 hours of attending gatherings with more than 1,000 in attendance such including concerts or sporting events. Previously a negative test was required within the past 72 hours.
The mandate will include California as one of only nine states imposing an indoor masking requirement for both the vaccinated and unvaccinated, joining Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Hawaii, New Mexico, Illinois, New York, and Connecticut. Washington D.C. has a similar mask mandate in place as well.
Cases of COVID-19 in California have increased 47% since the Thanksgiving holiday increasing their average from 9.6 cases per 100,000 people per day to 14 cases per 100,000 people per day.
Currently, 64.8% of the state’s population is fully