Strengthened Mask Order In Effect For Vermont Starting Today

Announced on July 24th by Vermont Governor Phil Scott, strengthened mask requirements in public places and congregate settings go into effect today, August 1st.

“Based on national and regional data on how the virus is spreading – and rather than waiting like other states have – I feel we need to act now to protect our gains, which have allowed us to reopen much of our economy,” said Governor Scott. “That’s why today I signed an Order, which will strengthen our current mask mandates so that we do not take steps backward and we can stay open into the fall as people move more of their interactions indoors,” Governor Scott added.

This new order will require all Vermonters to wear masks or cloth facial coverings anytime physical distancing in public is not possible. 

Those who are not required to use masks include those exercising outdoors, those under the age of 2, those with a medical or developmental condition that is complicated by a facial covering, and those with difficulty breathing. Businesses and other entities may require customers to wear masks, including signage explaining mask requirements and denial of entry or service to those who decline to wear masks.

“Unfortunately, this issue has become polarized and, I’m still worried that a mandate will create unnecessary conflict and resistance,” Governor Scott said. “Attacking, shaming, and judging isn’t going to help; but understanding, educating, leading by example, meeting people where they are, and maybe a little kindness and understanding will,” Governor Scott encouraged.

Developed in consultation with the Vermont Department of Health (VDH), this amendment is critical to the state’s strategy to limit the spread of COVID-19 in anticipation of K-12 and college students returning to school, as well as the fall and winter recreation seasons.

Currently, ski mountains and resorts across the state have already begun requiring masks for visitors during summertime operations. Those mask requirements will likely be in effect for the 2020/2021 ski season, especially with the indefinite time period of this new amendment to the executive mask order.


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