Non-medical grade face masks now mandatory in Honolulu, Oahu

Non-medical grade face masks now mandatory in Honolulu, Oahu

Mayor Kirk Caldwell today announced that the City and County of Honolulu’s proposal to Governor David Ige has been approved to mandate non-medical grade face coverings on Oahu effective Friday, July 3. This directive is outlined in an amended Order 5: Non-Medical Grade Face Coverings of the Mayor’s Emergency Order No. 2020-18 (Amendment to Ho‘oulu i Honolulu 4.0).

The amended Order 5: Non-Medical Grade Face Coverings now requires everyone on Oahu to wear non-medical grade face coverings over their noses and mouths at indoor public spaces, like Essential Business and Designated Businesses and Operations, as well as outdoor areas where physical distancing is unlikely or difficult to maintain.
Face coverings under this Order may not be worn only under the following circumstances:

• Within banks, financial institutions, or using automated teller machines where the inability to verify the identity of the customer or visitor of the bank, financial institution or automated teller machine poses a security risk;
• By individuals with medical conditions or disabilities where the wearing of a face covering may pose a health or safety risk to the individual;
• By individuals engaging in physical activity outdoors where physical distancing can be maintained (e.g., walking, jogging, hiking, etc.)
• By children under the age of 5;
• By first responders (Honolulu Police Department, Honolulu Fire Department, Honolulu Emergency Services Department) to the extent that wearing nonmedical grade face coverings may impair or impede the safety of the first responder in the performance of his/her duty;
• By children in childcare, educational, and similar facilities consistent with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) for such facilities;
• As allowed by another provision of this Order. The wearing of face coverings under this Order is intended to complement, not serve as a substitute, for physical distancing and cleanliness.

Face coverings will not be required if an individual has no engagement or interaction with anyone else (e.g. working alone at an office desk). If you are unable to wear a non-medical grade face covering due to medical conditions or disabilities where the wearing of a face covering may pose a health or safety risk to the individual, a face shield should be worn instead.

“Face coverings are one of the easiest way to prevent the spread of COVID-19”, said Mayor Caldwell. “I know wearing a face covering can be a bit inconvenient and take some time getting used to, but think about who you’re trying to protect. Throughout the month of June we saw double-digit bumps in the daily new cases of the virus here on Oahu and unfortunately another coronavirus related death. Doing all we can to control the spread of COVID-19 now, is imperative.”

“Non-medical grade face covering” or “face covering” as used in this Order, means a tightly woven fabric without holes that is secured to the head with either ties or straps, or simply wrapped and tied around the wearer’s nose and mouth.

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