City, Coronavirus

City of Columbia Mandatory Mask Ordinance

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Last night, Columbia City Council passed an emergency ordinance, which will require all residents (ages 10 and up) to wear a mask in public and when visiting businesses in order to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The ordinance will go into effect this Friday, June 26 at 6 a.m. and will last for 60 days.

The ordinance will affect those within the city limits. Unsure of where those lie? Check out this map.

So when will masks be required?

Inside a public building

Waiting to enter a public building

Interacting with others outdoors within six feet of each other

In public and private businesses

Public and private transportation

Walking in public when it isn’t possible to maintain six-foot distance from others

When do I not need to wear a mask?

In personal vehicles

In an enclosed space or when you’re only with members of your household

During outdoor physical activity not within six feet of others

While eating, drinking or smoking

Within religious establishments

When a mask causes or aggravates a health condition

When a mask would prevent the receipt of personal services

Acceptable face coverings include cloth face coverings, bandanas, N95 respirators, surgical masks + face shields. A system will be developed to provide masks to those who need them.

Violating the ordinance will be punishable as a civil infraction with a fine of up to $25

The ordinance also requires all grocery store, restaurant, pharmacy, retail store and salon employees to wear a mask at all times when interacting with the public. Violating this portion of the ordinance is punishable as a civil infraction with a fine of up to $100.

Those who are unable to wear a mask due to age, an underlying health condition or cannot remove the mask without assistance are exempt from the ordinance.

View the entire ordinance here.