Palm Springs to still require masks for anyone indoors until California changes policy

By Ema Sasic | Desert Sun

The city of Palm Springs announced Friday it will continue to follow current face covering guidelines in place from the California Department of Public Health “until otherwise notified by the State.”

The current guidance in California states face coverings are not required outdoors for fully vaccinated people except during crowded outdoor events. Unvaccinated people are required to wear face coverings outdoors “any time physical distancing cannot be maintained, including when attending crowded outdoor events, such as live performances, parades, fairs, festivals, sports events, or other similar settings.”

Both vaccinated and unvaccinated people are required to wear face coverings in indoor settings, except in their homes.

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can largely ditch masks indoors

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eased mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people Thursday, allowing them to stop wearing masks outdoors in crowds and in most indoor settings. The new guidance still calls for wearing masks in crowded indoor settings like buses, airplanes, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters.

The city noted Friday that “face coverings are still required indoors, with few exceptions.”

Riverside County spokesperson Jose Arballo Jr. said Thursday that the county is “awaiting state guidelines on masks in (the) wake of CDC recommendations.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom says the state is on track to fully reopen its economy next month, signaling an end to most pandemic restrictions as infection rates stay at record lows and more people get vaccinated. On Thursday, the state began allowing children 12 to 15 to receive the vaccine. 

California ranked 49th among the states where coronavirus was spreading the fastest on a per-person basis, a USA TODAY Network analysis of Johns Hopkins University data showed earlier this week.

Riverside County has administered more than 1.6 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as of Monday, according to data from the California Department of Public Health. That’s up 5% from the previous week’s tally of 1,542,532 COVID-19 doses administered.

In Riverside County, 30% of people are fully vaccinated as of Monday.

USA Today contributed to this report.

Ema Sasic covers health in the Coachella Valley. Reach her at or on Twitter @ema_sasic.

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