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Restaurant and Grocery Store Employees Now Required to Wear Facial Coverings

The new order is effective at midnight

Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The next phase of San Diego County’s public health order, which remains in effect until further notice, is a just-added addendum that gives new directives to essential businesses such as restaurants, grocery stores, and any establishments that serve food. Effective at 12 a.m. on Saturday, April 4, all employees who may have contact with the public will now be required to wear a cloth face covering.

A memorandum from the California Department of Public Health defines a cloth face covering as “a material that covers the nose and mouth. It can be secured to the head with ties or straps or simply wrapped around the lower face. It can be made of a variety of materials, such as cotton, silk, or linen. A cloth face covering may be factory-made or sewn by hand, or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, T-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels.” Medical-grade masks are to remain reserved for hospital and healthcare professionals.

The order does not mandate that face coverings be worn by the general public, but says that citizens may choose to wear a cloth face covering when out doing essential activities, such as going to a grocery store, though proper social distancing should still be observed.

By 12 a.m. Saturday, businesses must also post a “Social Distancing and Sanitation Protocol” with signage at public entrances to inform all employees and customers of required measures, including maintaining a minimum six-foot distance from one another and not shaking hands or engaging in any unnecessary physical contact.

According to NBC7, San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore says that anyone found to be in violation of the orders in effect will face up to a $1,000 fine or up to 6 months in jail.

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