State mandates face masks for most public settings

Effective Friday, June 26
OLYMPIA – Effective Friday, June 26, Washington state residents and visitors are required to wear face coverings in most indoor and outdoor public settings to guard against the spread of the coronavirus per an order signed by state Secretary of Health John Wiesman.
The order applies to those:
• Inside of or in line to enter any indoor public space.
• Seeking health care services.
• Waiting for or riding public transportation.
• Outdoors and unable to remain six feet distant from others not in their household.
Exceptions to the above order include children under five years of age and people with medical or mental health conditions or disabilities that prevent the wearing a face covering.
Earlier in June state officials launched a program to make reusable cloth face coverings available for all low-income Washington residents. The state Emergency Management Division partnered with the Department of Enterprise Services to purchase 3.6 million cloth masks. The goal is to distribute two masks to every Washingtonian with an income below 200 percent of the federal poverty level ($52,400 for a family of four)
“In just two weeks, the state distributed nearly 2.8 million masks and is working on filling the remaining orders from local emergency management offices,” a state Department of Health media release said.
The state delivers the masks to local emergency management offices which in turn allocates them to community and service organizations for distribution to individuals. As of June 22, Okanogan County has received or will receive 36,900 masks and Douglas County 28,150. To inquire locally about picking up a mask contact:
Okanogan County Emergency Management
123 5th Ave. N., Room 200
Okanogan, WA 98840
Phone: 509-422-7206
Fax: 509-422-7217

 

Douglas County Emergency Management
110 N.E. 2nd Street Suite 200
East Wenatchee, WA 98802
Phone: 509-884-0941
Fax: 509-886-1045

 

Those interested in making face coverings can join the Lt. Governor’s Mask Challenge at lt.gov.wa.gov/mask-challenge
More information about the face cover order is available online at coronavirus.wa.gov/masks.
Okanogan County Sheriff Tony Hawley and Douglas County Sheriff Kevin Morris, both appointees to the North Central Washington Law Enforcement Leadership Group organized by Congressman Dan Newhouse, issued statements concerning the latest developments:
“In response to many inquiries on the Governor’s recent proclamation regarding face coverings, we want to communicate we will continue to focus on crimes and criminals which impact public safety. The statewide face covering order is a public health and safety measure, it is not a mandate for local law enforcement response. We encourage our community to take the necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of all.”
 

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