Vigilant Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law, HR, safety & workers' comp

Jul 22, 2021

CALIFORNIA: Keep an eye on local mask mandates for your area

COVID-19Safety and Health 

As local jurisdictions in California grapple with rising infection rates from COVID-19 (coronavirus), many are strongly recommending wearing masks indoors regardless of vaccination status, and at least two have made it mandatory. Los Angeles County issued an order requiring face coverings in businesses and public indoor spaces, even for those who are fully vaccinated against the virus, effective at 11:59 p.m. on July 17, 2021. Employees who cannot feasibly perform certain tasks while wearing a mask must be tested for COVID-19 at least twice a week unless they provide proof that they’re fully vaccinated or they recovered from laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 within the last 90 days. The City of Pasadena followed suit with a similar order, effective at 12:01 a.m. today, July 22, 2021.

Meanwhile, local jurisdictions that are strongly recommending (but not mandating) masks for everyone in indoor public spaces include Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Marin, Monterey, Napa, Sacramento, San Benito, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Sonoma, Ventura, and Yolo counties as well as the City of Berkeley.

Tips: Currently, California’s statewide mask guidance as well as Cal/OSHA's COVID-19 emergency temporary standards (ETS) generally require masks in indoor workplaces, but allow exceptions for fully vaccinated individuals. Local jurisdictions may impose more protective measures, however, so be sure to monitor the news in your local area in case you need to make adjustments to your workplace safety requirements. Contact your Vigilant safety professional with questions about the Cal/OSHA ETS and contact your Vigilant Law Group employment attorney for advice if an employee refuses to wear a mask when required to do so.

This website presents general information in nontechnical language. This information is not legal advice. Before applying this information to a specific management decision, consult legal counsel.