(Courtesy of Mark Fawcett)
Minneapolis will require everyone over age 2 to wear a mask or face covering in indoor public spaces starting Tuesday in response to the city reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Mayor Jacob Frey signed an order Thursday afternoon requiring the covering of your nose and mouth at all “indoor spaces of public accommodation” until further notice. The order, believed to be the first in Minnesota, will affect stores, malls, businesses, skyways and any other places where everyday people are allowed to pass.
The point of such masks isn’t to protect the wearer, but rather everyone else who might come into contact with the wearer. Even relatively loose-fitting cloth face coverings, including scarves or bandanas, can block contaminated droplets from being projected from the wearer’s mouth and nose.
“Wearing a mask slows the spread of the virus,” Frey said in an afternoon conference call with reporters.
Because some people can be infected — and contagious — with the coronavirus and not know it, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the White House coronavirus task force have recommended the use of masks when people are out and about. In fact, the CDC recommendation reads But they aren’t required nationally.
Similarly, Gov. Tim Walz’s statewide orders in effect today encourage everyone to wear masks when outside their homes and in settings where keeping a 6-foot distance might be difficult. But it isn’t mandatory. New orders Walz announced Wednesday will require some professionals to wear masks in some settings.