Masks mandatory in all public spaces in Pennsylvania, Gov. Wolf says

Governor Tom Wolf announced Wednesday that masks are now mandatory whenever you leave your home in Pennsylvania. The expanded order takes effect immediately.

“This mask-wearing order is essential to stopping the recent increase in COVID-19 cases we have seen in Pennsylvania,” Gov. Wolf said. “Those hot spots can be traced to situations where Pennsylvanians were not wearing masks or practicing social distancing – two practices that must be adhered to if we want to maintain the freedoms we have in place under our reopening."

The order outlines the situations when a mask must be worn and includes limited exceptions to the face covering requirement. 

Section 2: Face Coverings Required

Except as provided in Section 3, individuals are required to wear face coverings if they are:

  1. outdoors and unable to consistently maintain a distance of six feet from individuals who are not members of their household;
  2. in any indoor location where members of the public are generally permitted;
  3. waiting for, riding on, driving, or operating public transportation or paratransit or while in a taxi or private car service or ride-sharing vehicle.
  4. obtaining services from healthcare sector in setting including, but not limited to, a hospital, pharmacy, medical clinic, laboratory, physician or dental office, veterinary clinic, or blood bank; or
  5. engaged in work, whether at the workplace of performing work off-site, when interacting in-person with any member of the public, working in any space visited by members of the public, working in space where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution to others, working in or walking through common areas, or in any room or enclosed area where other people, except for members of the person’s household or residence, are present when unable to physically distance.

Section 3:  Exceptions to face covering requirement

A: The following are exceptions to the face covering requirement in Section 2:

  1. Individuals who cannot wear a mask due to a medical condition, including those with respiratory issues that impede breathing, mental health conditions, or disability;
  2. Individuals for whom wearing a mask while working would create an unsafe condition in which to operate equipment or execute a task as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines;
  3. Individuals who would be unable to remove a mask without assistance;
  4. Individuals  who are under two years of age;
  5. Individuals who are communicating or seeking to communicate with someone who is hear-impaired or has another disability, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication;
  6. Individuals are not required to show documentation that an exception applies.

Mobile users can view the order here.

“It is essential that Pennsylvanians wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “While cases increase in some areas, we cannot become complacent. My mask protects you, and your mask protects me. Wearing a mask shows that you care about others, and that you are committed to protecting the lives of those around you.” 

Statewide, 636 new cases surpassed 87,000 total, while 38 new deaths pushed the state’s total to 6,687, the health department said.

Last week, the City of Philadelphia issued a mandatory order on masks and face coverings requiring residents to wear them in public places after a spike in cases.




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