New mask requirement announced by Colorado Governor Jared Polis
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Colorado’s governor announced new mask requirements on Thursday. These requirements come after the state’s positive COVID-19 cases have been on the rise- although he says Colorado is still not considered a hot spot.
This new requirement goes into effect on Friday for the entire state and applies to “public indoor space.”
“Wearing a mask is an easy and highly effective way to significantly reduce the spread of COVID-19. The more we wear masks, the safer we will be and the stronger our economy will grow,” said Governor Jared Polis. “Unfortunately, this pandemic is far from over, cases are up, and we have to find a way to live sustainably while protecting ourselves and those around us. Masks are the ticket to the Colorado we love and a critical part of supporting Colorado’s economy and prosperity. The best way to support Colorado workers and businesses right now is to wear a mask. I’ve said this from the beginning, and it’s still true today: together, we will get through this.”
The order requires people in Colorado who are 11 years and older to wear a covering over their noses and mouths:
-When entering or moving within any public indoor space.
-While using or waiting to use public (buses, light-rail) or non-personal (taxis, car services, ride-shares) transportation services.
People who do not have to wear a mask include:
-People who are 10 years old and younger.
-People who cannot medically tolerate a face covering.
-Children ages 2 and under should NOT wear masks or cloth face coverings.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Is this a law?
Yes, executive orders and public health orders have the force of law. People who do not comply with the executive order may be subject to civil or criminal penalties.
What if I refuse to wear a mask?
- If you refuse to wear a mask as required in the executive order, you are violating a Colorado law and are subject to civil or criminal penalties.
- If you try to enter a store without a mask, you may be prosecuted for trespassing.
What if a business doesn’t comply?
A licensed business is at risk of losing its license.
For the mask order, “public indoor space” means a publicly or privately owned, managed or operated, enclosed indoor area that is accessible to the public, is a place of employment, or is an entity that provides services. Public indoor space does not mean a person’s residence, including a room in a motel or hotel or a residential room for students at an educational facility. Public indoor spaces include but are not limited to:
- Government buildings
- Houses of worship
- Private country clubs or social clubs
- Grocery stores
- Hair salons
- All offices, lobbies, elevators
- Malls, retail stores
- Indoor businesses, common areas
- Medical facilities, nursing homes
- Restaurants (if not seated)
- Gyms, including areas around indoor pools but not while swimming in the pool
- If a business or entity provides services or goods both indoors and outdoors at a single location, a mask must be worn in the indoor portion of that business or entity
- All enclosed indoor areas, whether publicly or privately owned or managed, except an individual’s residence
Gov. Polis also adds the state has masks ready to send to school districts if they resume in-person classes.
The announcement came during an afternoon press conference as Gov. Jared Polis provided an update on the COVID-19 response in Colorado. Exact details on the new requirement will be added to this article as that information becomes available.
As this is a developing story, we will have live updates on 11 News at 4 and 5:30 p.m. on Thursday.
The governor’s announcement comes a day after major retailer Walmart announced face coverings would be required in their stores nationwide. King Soopers also announced on Wednesday that masks would be required in their grocery stores starting July 22.
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