Amid trends of increased community transmission of COVID-19, at least 17 counties across California are now recommending residents wear face-coverings in indoor public spaces. However, only Los Angeles County has mandated the use of face-coverings indoors for everyone. Similarly, the City of Pasadena announced via Twitter that the Pasadena Public Health Department will be issuing an order requiring face masks indoors regardless of vaccination status in public settings and businesses. Details of the Pasadena order are expected to be published later this week.
L.A. County’s face-covering mandate went into effect over the weekend. Health officials attribute the recent spike in COVID-19 cases to the increasing presence of the more easily transmitted Delta variant.
The counties recommending individuals wear face coverings regardless of vaccination status while inside public spaces include: Santa Barbara, Monterey, Napa, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Ventura, Sacramento, Yolo, Stanislaus, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Sonoma. Notably, San Diego County has so far not revised its face mask guidance.
The Los Angeles County indoor mask mandate is expected to remain in place until community transmission levels of COVID-19 decline. Trying to predict exactly when that will happen may be a futile exercise. Employers should be prepared to follow prevailing public health protocols for the foreseeable future.