NATIONAL CITY, Calif. (KGTV) -- National City leaders voted unanimously Tuesday to require residents to wear face coverings in public amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The emergency order will require residents to wear face coverings "anytime they leave their home and are in public settings." The city's order goes into effect 12 a.m. Wednesday.
National City is the first San Diego County city to make face coverings required. City officials said it doesn’t have to be a mask; it can be as simple as using a scarf to cover your face.
RELATED: How to make a homemade face mask
National City Mayor Alejandra Sotelo-Solis said the city isn’t taking any chances with the spread of COVID-19. As of Monday, National City had 70 positive cases of the coronavirus and they want to keep that number from rising.
“This is one way and one tool in our belt to say it will not get the best of us,” the mayor said.
Sotelo-Solis said they are in the educational phase, meaning citations will not be issued if you are caught not covering up your face.
However, the mayor said that will change if people don’t abide by the rules.
“That’s the last resort, that’s the last thing that we want because we want people to do it because they see people like elders that they want to protect and continue to protect,” Sotelo-Solis said.
Currently, San Diego County's public health orders require employees of essential businesses (including gas stations, grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants and convenience stores) and public transportation, bank, and some childcare workers serving food to wear facial coverings. The county recommends face coverings for residents.
California leaders also strongly encourage residents to wear face coverings in public amid the pandemic. Though nearby Riverside and San Bernardino Counties have made face coverings mandatory, in addition to several other counties across the state.
- Some San Diego parks reopen Tuesday amid pandemic
- Advisory group to plan phased re-opening of San Diego's economy
- San Diego COVID-19 case tracker
Some grocery stores have also started to require customers wear face coverings while inside their business.
National City's Community Services Department has published a video showing viewers how to create a face covering without sewing here.