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Masks: Recommended or Required? A State-by-State List

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Updated March 17, 2021

As of the date of this article, over 26.2 million Americans have been infected with COVID-19. Of those, 441,000 have died. Many states such as California, Texas, Florida, New York, and Illinois have upwards of 1 million cases. Variants of the virus have now made their presence in the United States. We are seeing trending topics such as #doublemask gloss the covers of social media platforms and various news outlets. In a recent interview, the nation’s top public health expert Dr. Anthony Fauci was asked whether wearing two masks or the #doublemask could help slow the transmission of COVID-19. Dr. Fauci replied: “It likely does because this is a physical covering to prevent droplets and virus to get in. If you have a physical covering with one layer and you put another layer on it, it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective.”

Due to rising numbers, the recent release of stronger OSHA guidelines, and the new Administration, States have become more stringent in their recommendations or requirements of the use of face coverings in public settings. Of the 50 states and Puerto Rico, only eight states recommend the use of facial coverings. All remaining states mandate their use. These recommendations and mandates are quickly evolving as businesses open/close, numbers rise/fall, dining is restricted to outdoor/delivery, or limited indoor seating and the like. Local rules and ordinances may have stricter requirements. Chartwell will continue to update this list as changes are made.