These 4 States Made Face Masks Mandatory This Week

As coronavirus case numbers surge across the country, these states are now requiring face masks.

To help curb the spread of the coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that everyone don face masks while out in public. However, this recommendation hasn't necessarily been heeded by everyone. As more and more places have started to reopen, coronavirus cases have surged in many states where restrictions are lax and people are less likely to engage in safety practices, like wearing masks and social distancing. To help try to combat these rising case numbers, some states are now taking stricter measures. These are the states that made masks mandatory this week. And for more places that already had mask requirements, check out The 10 States With the Strictest Face Mask Laws.


The sun nearing the horizon over Long Beach, California lining up with one of the main streets in the city illuminating the pavement shot from about 1000 feet overhead.

Gov. Gavin Newsom decided to make masks mandatory in the state of California, announcing his new order on June 18. The governor said the statewide order was necessary because "we have many municipalities that require mandatory mask wearing, and people are simply not applying it." California had reached a high for new coronavirus cases on June 17 with 4,250 new cases, but then passed the 6,000 threshold on June 23, according to The New York Times.

North Carolina

Downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, USA Drone Skyline Aerial

North Carolina's new mask mandate goes into effect June 26 at 5 p.m. On June 24, Gov. Roy Cooper announced that the state would be requiring face masks to be worn in public spaces after recent record high numbers in North Carolina.

"I urge everyone to be a leader in wearing face coverings," Cooper said during his announcement. "I encourage businesses to be strong in enforcing it. Slowing the spread helps our economy, and these face coverings do that." And for more places requiring face masks, check out these 6 Popular Stores You Can't Enter Without a Face Mask.


Stock photograph of the downtown Spokane, Washington skyline and the Spokane River at sunrise.

Gov. Jay Inslee announced on June 23 that the state of Washington would now be requiring residents to wear face masks in all indoor public places and any outdoor spaces where social distancing cannot be maintained. The New York Times reports that Washington has had more than 31,000 coronavirus cases, with new cases steadily rising in the month of June.

"I think of these face coverings, in some sense, as a statement. It's a statement that when you wear it, it means you care about people, because it means you want to reduce the risk that you are going to infect another person," Inslee said during his announcement.


Reno at sunrise

Nevada is another state that has recently hammered down on its face mask guidelines. On June 24, Gov. Steve Sisolak announced that the state would be mandating the use of face masks while in any public spaces, with the order going into effect at midnight on June 25. This mandate comes following the steady increase in coronavirus cases across the state in the month of June. According to The New York Times, Nevada only had 73 new cases on June 1. But following reopening, that number has only risen, with the state seeing a record high of 483 new cases on June 23.

"For Nevada to stay safe and to stay open, we must make face coverings a routine part of our daily lives," Sisolak said during his announcement Wednesday. And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.

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