Cal/OSHA encourages indoor masking for all

Cloth and paper masks on August 23, 2021. Masks are mandatory in many cities due to the COVID 19 pandemic. (Ray Saint Germain/Bay City News)

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health encouraged employers and workers Wednesday to follow the state’s public health recommendation to wear a mask when indoors regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status.

While the state has not issued a new indoor face covering mandate that would also apply to fully vaccinated people, the California Department of Public Health still requires face coverings in certain settings like health care facilities and on public transit.

Cal/OSHA guidelines also do not require the use of a mask indoors for fully vaccinated workers, but encouraged workers to do so in an effort to prevent the spread of the highly contagious delta variant.

As reported by CalMatters on Thursday, “Cal/OSHA said last week it likely won’t formally update its workplace pandemic standards until December — potentially to avoid another confusing back-and-forth that saw the agency in June change its mind on mask rules four times in the space of two weeks.”

Unvaccinated workers are still required to wear a face covering at all times when indoors under the workplace safety guidelines Cal/OSHA approved in June.

Workers are encouraged to contact Cal/OSHA at (833) 579-0927 or visit https://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/Complaint.htm for information about COVID-19 hazards in the workplace and how to report them.

Employers can also contact Cal/OSHA at (800) 963-9424 for information or assistance with developing a COVID-10 prevention and safety program.

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