Washington, North Carolina require masks statewide

Last night Washington Governor Jay Inslee said he was making masks a “legal requirement” starting this Friday. Though Seattle was the first U.S. outbreak region in February, the state had tamped down COVID-19 activity. But recent activity in Yakima County, home to Spokane, has left the region out of hospital beds.

Inslee said not wearing a mask in public, including in businesses, would be a misdemeanor charge. Children 5 years and younger, people who are deaf or have a medical condition preventing mask use, and people eating and drinking in public are exempt from using a mask.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced a statewide mask requirement and a halt in the state’s reopening plan of at least 3 weeks amid rising cases. North Carolina was expected to start phase 3 of its reopening this Friday, which would further loosen capacity restrictions on open businesses and open gyms. Phase 2 is now in effect until Jul 17.

Like Washington state, North Carolina’s mask mandate will be enforceable by law.

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