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How Does the Governor's Statewide Face Mask Mandate Affect Kansans?


Kansas Governor Implements Face Mask Mandate

TOPEKA, Kan. (KPR/AP/KNS) - This week, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly implemented a second executive order mandating that residents, statewide, wear face masks.  Her order comes in response to a surge in coronavirus cases and COVID-19 hospitalizations across the state. Like the governor's first mask order, this new order requires the wearing of face coverings in public indoor spaces or when social distancing is not possible. However, counties have the ability to opt out, just like they did under the earlier order.

Who Does the Order Affect?

For those who live in counties that already opted into the governor’s first mask mandate, or for counties that created their own face mask requirement, nothing will change. But Kansans who live in a county with no mask order will need to stay aware of what action is taken by their own county commissioners. County commissions have until November 25 to formally meet and opt out of the governor's order again. If they don’t, the new order automatically goes into effect on that day.

Under the executive order, one must wear a mask when inside, or in line to enter, any indoor public space; when obtaining services from a healthcare provider; when waiting for - or riding on - public transportation, or while in a taxi or ride-sharing vehicle. Face coverings must also be worn when outdoors and unable to socially distance 6 feet.

Businesses must require all employees to wear a face mask if they are working in public spaces, working in spaces where food is prepared or packaged and working in common areas where social distancing is not possible. Members of the public visiting businesses must also wear masks, unless seated at a restaurant and socially distanced.

Those under five and those with certain medical conditions affected by wearing a mask are exempt.

The Hutchinson News has more on what the governor's mask order means to Kansans and how the order may be enforced.

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