© 2023 KALW 91.7 FM Bay Area
KALW Public Media / 91.7 FM Bay Area
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Santa Cruz County reimposes mask mandate

santa cruz masks ian abbott.jpg
Ian E. Abbott
Flickr / Creative Commons
A banner proclaiming Santa Cruz's County earlier indoor mask mandate.

The mask requirement went into effect today (Monday). It applies to everyone in the county, regardless of their vaccination status.

In addition to applying in public spaces like grocery stores and offices, the mandate will also apply in private settings like a person's home when members of another household are present, according to the county.

Businesses and governmental offices are required to post signage about the mask requirement, but the county did not state how masking in private gatherings will be enforced.

The reasons for re-implementing the mask mandate?

The county’s health officer said a potential winter surge appears to be a significant threat to the health and safety of the community.

Santa Cruz County issued an indoor mask requirement during the state's late-summer surge in COVID-19 cases spurred by the highly contagious Delta variant. That mandate was lifted two months ago as the county moved into the “moderate” tier, as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As of Friday, Santa Cruz County was in the "substantial" transmission tier, the second-highest.

The mask requirement will remain in place indefinitely, according to the county, until it is rescinded, superseded, or amended, according to the county health officer.