eUpdate - June 20, 2020 
New State Mandatory Guidelines For Face Coverings 
All residents asked to follow state rules, as essential to safely reopening 
In Contra Costa County, as across the state, reopening our communities  successfully depends on continuing our efforts to stop COVID-19 spread.

While we've made a lot of progress due to our collective efforts, we are seeing an increase in new cases and hospitalizations. We should feel good about our work, but we can't let our guard down.
Data shows the virus is still spreading, though more slowly. And of deep concern, COVID-19 rates are highest in communities of color. San Pablo, Richmond, and El Sobrante have the highest rates per capita in the County, with the addition of Bay Point. 
We all need to take this seriously and continue to do all we can to prevent the spread of the virus, especially as we open up after months of staying home.

Research shows that one of the most impactful ways we can do this is by wearing face coverings in public settings. Social distancing, hand-washing, staying home and getting tested if having symptoms are other key preventative steps.

Yesterday (June 18), the state issued new mandatory guidelines for face coverings which takes precedence over County requirements. 

I support this move as a critical step in opening, and encourage us to take these guidelines seriously.

Under the new guidelines, people must wear masks in higher-risk situations including:
  • Inside of, or in line to enter, any indoor public space.
  • Obtaining services in a healthcare facility such as a hospital, pharmacy, clinic, or lab. 
  • Waiting for or riding on public transportation or para-transit or while in a taxi, private car service, or ride-sharing vehicle.
  • Engaged in work, whether at the workplace or performing work off-site, when: 
    • Interacting in-person with any member of the public.
    • Working in any space visited by members of the public, regardless of whether anyone from the public is present at the time. 
    • Working in any space where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution to others.
    • Working in or walking through common areas, such as hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities.
    • In any room or enclosed area where other people (except for members of the person's own household or residence) are present when unable to physically distance
  • Driving or operating any public transportation or paratransit vehicle, taxi, or private car service or ride-sharing vehicle when passengers are present. When no passengers are present, face coverings are strongly recommended.
  • While outdoors in public spaces when you cannot maintain a physical distance of at least 6 feet from people who aren't in your household. 
Under these guidelines, the following individuals are exempt from wearing a face covering: 
  • Persons age two years or under, due to the risk of suffocation.
  • Persons with a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that prevents wearing a face covering, such as when wearing a face covering could obstruct breathing.
  • 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 that they are able to maintain a distance of at least six feet away from persons who are not members of the same household or residence.
  • Persons who are engaged in outdoor work or recreation such as swimming, walking, hiking, bicycling, or running, when alone or with household members, and when they are able to maintain a distance of at least six feet from others. 
  • Persons who are incarcerated. Prisons and jails, as part of their mitigation plans, will have specific guidance on the wearing of face coverings or masks for both inmates and staff.
Let's keep up the work together! It will take all of us to keep our communities healthy. Thank you. 

John Gioia
Supervisor, District One 
Contra Costa County 
11780 San Pablo Avenue, Suite D 
El Cerrito, CA  94530 
510-231-8686 Phone