Phoenix – In light of the rapid growth in positive COVID-19 cases, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved regulations related to wearing masks in an effort to slow the spread the disease.
The regulations create consistent minimum mask-wearing requirements across all jurisdictions while allowing cities and towns to set their own policies and regulations related to face coverings.
“We know thousands of people move through different cities and towns in Maricopa County every day,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Clint Hickman. “The regulations are based on the recommendations of our Public Health Department and they give residents an understanding of the rules no matter where they are within the County.”
Some cities and towns have already passed proclamations and emergency orders. This County regulation does not interfere with those local decisions. Board members hope other governments will take advantage of the expertise from Public Health and create consistent rules in their communities. Some highlights from the regulations include:
- People older than six must wear masks in enclosed public spaces
- Adults with children 2 to 5 years old must make reasonable effort to make them wear masks inside enclosed public spaces
- All riders and operators on public transportation must wear a mask
- Staff working in public spaces (such as restaurants or stores) must wear masks
“We are hoping residents and cities and towns will partner with us during the pandemic,” added Hickman. “We have seen more than 60% of total cases in the past three weeks. This will not stop unless the public consistently takes action to prevent the spread.”
The regulations include exemptions from wearing masks that include:
- The regulations do not apply to people in homes
- Children under 2 years old
- Restaurant patrons while they are eating and drinking
- People walking or exercising outdoors (while maintaining six feet of distance)
- When in a personal vehicle, office or other personal space
Enforcement is the responsibility of law enforcement and per the governor’s executive order 2020-40, it should focus on educating the public about the dangers of community spread. An officer should promote best public health practices and provide a warning, but if a person refuses to put on a face covering again, they can face a fine of not more than $50.
This regulation goes into effect at midnight on Saturday, June 20, 2020.
Read the regulations requiring face coverings in Maricopa County >