As was reported late Monday, due to continued increases in the various COVID-19 metrics being followed by state health officials, Governor Laura Kelly issued
Executive Order No. 20-52
this morning, which imposes a new statewide face covering requirement for all individuals effective tomorrow, Friday, July 3, 2020, at 12:01 am.
Although the Governor’s Order will require anyone in a public space where social distancing is not possible to wear a mask, individual counties have to ability to accept, alter or to not enforce the Order. Some counties have already scheduled commission meetings today ahead of the Independence Day weekend and already several counties have decided to not enforce the Order. The Kansas Chamber has provided a link to all
Under the Order any person in Kansas shall cover their mouth and nose with a mask or other face covering when they are in the following situations:
- Inside, or in line to enter, any indoor public space;
- While outdoors in public spaces and unable to maintain a 6-foot distance between individuals (not including individuals who reside together) with only infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity.
The Order also requires a Face Covering to be worn by all employees and riders on public or private transportation. As such, this provision likely covers dealership shuttle services or other transportation assistance in which a dealership employee is operating the vehicle.
Under the Order all businesses in Kansas must require all employees and customers to wear a mask or other face covering when:
- Employees are working in any space visited by customers or members of the public, regardless of whether anyone from the public is present at the time;
- Employees are working in any space where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution to others;
- Employees are working in or walking through common areas, such as hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities;
- Customers or members of the public are in a facility managed by the business or organization;
- Employees are in any room or enclosed area where other people (except for individuals who reside together) are present and are unable to maintain a 6-foot distance except for infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity.
The Order does not specifically address whether a business is required to refuse entry to a customer who asserts an exception to the Face Covering requirement.
The Order does not require Face Coverings for an employee, customer or patron who:
- Persons age five years or under—children age two years and under in particular should not wear a face covering because of the risk of suffocation;
- Persons with a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that prevents wearing a face covering—this includes persons with a medical condition for whom wearing a face covering could obstruct breathing or who are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove a face covering without assistance;
- Persons who are hearing impaired, or communicating with a person who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication;
- Persons for whom wearing a face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work, as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines;
- Persons who are obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service;
- Persons who are seated at a restaurant or other establishment that offers food or beverage service, while they are eating or drinking, provided they maintain a 6-foot distance between individuals (not including individuals who reside together or are seated together) with only infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity;
- Athletes who are engaged in an organized sports activity that allows athletes to maintain a 6-foot distance from others with only infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity;
- Persons who are engaged in an activity that a professional or recreational association, regulatory entity, medical association, or other public-health-oriented entity has determined cannot be safely conducted while wearing a mask or other face covering;
- Persons engaged in an activity or event held or managed by the Kansas Legislature;
- Persons engaged in a court-related proceeding held or managed by the Kansas Judiciary;
- Persons engaged in any lawful activity during which wearing a mask or other face covering is prohibited by law.
- "Mask or other face covering" means a covering of the nose and mouth that is secured to the head with ties, straps, or loops over the ears or is simply wrapped around the lower face. A mask or other face covering can be made of a variety of synthetic and natural fabrics, including cotton, silk, or linen. Ideally, a mask or other face covering has two or more layers. A mask or other face covering may be factory-made, sewn by hand, or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, bandanas, t-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels.
- “Public space” means any indoor or outdoor space or area that is open to the public; this does not include private residential property or private offices or workspaces that are not open to customers or public visitors.
While not required by the Order, KADA encourages dealerships to consider posting conspicuous signage in the dealership to inform customers and employees of the new Face Covering requirement. KADA has prepared a
KADA Sample Dealership Face Covering Requirement Sign
that dealerships may use for these purposes. Please note, the sample sign references a Face Covering requirement for anyone over five (5) years of age.
Violations of pandemic-related executive orders are no longer crimes due to a new law passed last month. However, prosecutors can pursue civil penalties of up to $2,500 for violations or seek restraining orders to compel someone to wear a mask.
KADA anticipates further clarification of the Face Covering Order in the days ahead and will provide updates as they are available.