NewsLocal News


Cal/OSHA now recommends universal indoor mask wearing for workers

Workplace Mask
Posted at 3:57 PM, Aug 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-25 18:59:43-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — California's workplace safety agency is now recommending workers mask up indoors, regardless of vaccination status, citing the state's increase in COVID-19 cases.

Cal/OSHA announced Wednesday that it's now recommending that, "all individuals wear face coverings while indoors regardless of vaccination status."

The agency's previous guidance allowed workers who are fully vaccinated to go without face coverings in the workplace, unless in certain situations.

Cal/OSHA said the change in recommendation is "due to the recent increase of COVID-19 infections in the workplace." Employers were also advised to make face masks available upon request, as required by the state.

RELATED: Group of doctors urges San Diego County to require masks indoors, vaccines for bars and indoor dining

Wednesday's move brings Cal/OSHA in alignment with the CDC's recommendation that everyone mask up at indoor public spaces. California has followed that guidance since it was announced in July.

The move also comes as more counties and businesses around the state institute mandates to curb the rise in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Last week, Los Angeles County became the first California county to reinstate a mask mandate at major outdoor events. California recently announced that starting on Sept. 20, anyone attending an indoor event with more than 1,000 people must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test within 72 hours of the event to attend.

California already requires universal masking at schools and all health care workers in the state to be vaccinated.

According to the agency's guidance, fully vaccinated individuals don't need to be tested for COVID-19 or quarantine after close contact with a case unless they show symptoms, and employers must make COVID-19 testing available to unvaccinated employees who have symptoms and vaccinated workers after close contact to a positive COVID-19 case.

California shed most of its masking rules and businesses restrictions in June.