Los Angeles County and City COVID-19 Masking Orders Move Closer to California Department of Public Health – Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Los Angeles County and City COVID-19 Masking Orders Move Closer to California Department of Public Health – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Los Angeles County and City COVID-19 Masking Orders Move Closer to California Department of Public Health – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

February 23, 2022, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) issued an order, with effect from 25 February 2022, which slightly relaxed the rules for wearing COVID-19 masks in the county. One day after the LACDPH order on February 24, 2022, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti issued the Provisional “Public Order Under the City of Los Angeles Emergency Authority,” which reflected the new Los Angeles County Order. While these revisions make the orders from both the county and the city much more similar California State Masking Rules at present they are stricter than the current state rules.

The general rule in both the county and the city of Los Angeles is that persons must still wear masks, with certain exceptions for fully vaccinated persons. Anyone who is not fully vaccinated should continue to wear a mask in all indoor public places in the county and city of Los Angeles.

Who is required to wear a mask in the county and city of Los Angeles?

Everyone who is two years of age or older, regardless of vaccination status, must wear a mask in the following environment: at all public transport and transit hubs; in all health environments; in the penitentiary; in shelters and refrigeration centers; and indoors at youth service facilities, such as schools, childcare centers, and day camps (except for persons with certain medical conditions or disabilities and persons instructed by their physicians not to wear masks).

In addition, the orders contain specific masking rules for certain sectors, where a higher risk of infection requires additional risk reduction measures. These sectors include the following:

  • Day camps

  • Schools (K-12) and school districts

  • Mega events (outdoors [10,000 or more attendees] and indoors
    [1,000 or more attendees])

  • Organized youth sports activities

  • Bars, breweries, wineries and distilleries

  • Nightclubs and lounges

  • Restaurants

Employers in these companies may want to review county and city orders to ensure they comply with industry-specific rules.

Can Los Angeles area companies allow individuals who are not fully vaccinated to deworm indoors?

No. Persons who are not fully vaccinated should remain masked indoors.

Are fully vaccinated individuals exempt from wearing a mask indoors in the county and city of Los Angeles?

Yes, under some circumstances. Fully vaccinated persons do not have to wear masks indoors if the establishment or site verifies vaccination status or requires evidence of a negative test taken within forty-eight hours of all individuals entering the company or venue. If a company does not confirm vaccination status or requests a negative test result from
all indoor customers so
all must continue to wear mask.

This means that all customers who are fully vaccinated must provide proof of vaccination, and all customers who are not fully vaccinated must provide proof of a negative test to enter the facility before anyone is allowed to unmask. In addition, unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear a mask in all indoor environments, even if they give a negative test.

Do individuals need to have received a booster vaccine to qualify as fully vaccinated?

No. An individual is still considered “fully vaccinated” under these temporary orders two weeks after receiving the second dose in a two-dose series or two weeks or more after receiving a single-dose vaccine.

Should all companies allow customers, visitors, employees and / or workers who are fully vaccinated to disclose?

No. Businesses and other businesses may continue to require indoor masking for all customers, visitors and workers if they prefer to do so.

What options are available to companies that want to allow fully vaccinated customers / visitors and / or workers to disclose?

Businesses and businesses in the county and city of Los Angeles that want to allow customers, visitors, and / or workers to reveal have two options:

Option 1 – To give both fully vaccinated customers / visitors and fully vaccinated employees on site the opportunity to reveal while indoors, a business must:

  1. Confirm proof of either full vaccination against COVID-19 or a recent negative COVID-19 viral test result for all customers / visitors (aged five years or older) and all on-site staff prior to entry.

  2. A customer’s or visitor’s test results must have been from a test taken within two days of entry, if a PCR test or a day if an antigen test. On-site workers who are not fully vaccinated may submit a negative COVID-19 viral test result before work on-site, every three days. No cost tests may be made available to on-site staff. For this option, companies, businesses and venues must also offer, at no cost to all employees, a well-adapted respirator (eg N95 / KN95 / KF94) to maximize their protection in an unmasked indoor environment.

    1. Proof of full vaccination status before entry requires review of:

      1. both the individual image identification; and

      2. the person’s vaccination card (which includes the name of the vaccinated person, the type of COVID-19 vaccine given and the date of the last dose) OR a picture of a vaccination card as a separate document OR a picture of the participant’s vaccine card stored on a telephone or electronic device OR documentation of the person’s full vaccination against COVID-19 from a healthcare provider OR their COVID-19 digital vaccine record.


    2. Evidence of a recent negative COVID-19 viral test prior to entry requires review of:

      1. both the person’s photo identification (for persons aged 18 and over) and a printed document from the test provider or laboratory; or an email or text message displayed on a phone from the test provider or laboratory. The test result information must include the person’s name, date of test, type of test performed and negative test result.

      2. results from over-the-counter self-test kits (OTC) are not an acceptable form of proof for customers. Workplaces may accept a negative test result from the COVID-19 OTC Employee Self-Test Kit if used in accordance with requirements issued by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal / OSHA).

Option 2-To allow only fully vaccinated customers and visitors to unmask while indoors, while all workers on site, including contractors, remain masked, companies must:

  1. Confirm evidence of either full vaccination against COVID-19 or a recent negative COVID-19 viral test result for all clients / visitors (aged five years or older). All on-site staff must remain masked while indoors. A customer’s or visitor’s test results must be taken within two days of entry if a PCR test or a day if an antigen test.

  2. Adhere to the following requirements for customers and masking:

    1. only fully vaccinated customers and visitors may be detected while indoors;

    2. customers and guests who are not fully vaccinated must continue to wear a well-fitting mask while indoors (as required by the state), except when actively eating or drinking; and

    3. Workers in the workplace, regardless of their vaccination status, are required to remain masked while indoors.

Whether a company chooses one of the above options or not, individuals do not have to meet the requirements for verification of vaccination / negative viral testing to enter the indoor part of the facility as long as they wear a well-fitting mask for the following purposes:

  • as part of their employment to make a delivery or pick-up, provide a service or repair to the facility or in case of emergency or regulatory purposes;

  • to get to the outdoor part of the facility;

  • to use an indoor toilet; or

  • to order, pick up or pay for food or drink “to go”.

Should we expect the Los Angeles County and City COVID-19 masking rules to change again?

Yes. The county and city expect to revise their COVID-19 masking rules when the county drops to a moderate COVID-19 infection rate. Health authorities expect the county to reach a moderate transmission rate within the next few weeks.

In summary, the current rules of the county and the city of Los Angeles are:

  1. If a company or venue wants to allow fully vaccinated customers and visitors to reveal, all customers and visitors must provide proof of vaccination or a negative test before entering.

  2. If a company or meeting place wants to allow fully vaccinated workers to reveal, not only must all customers and visitors provide evidence of vaccination or a recent negative test, but all workers who are not fully vaccinated must provide evidence of a recent negative test (every three days) to enter.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject. Specialist advice should be sought on your specific conditions.

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