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.