Virus Outbreak Sean Penn California

Actor Sean Penn, left, founder of the nonprofit organization Community Organized Relief Effort, talks with board member Matt O'Connell outside a CORE coronavirus testing site at Malibu City Hall, Thursday, April 9, 2020, in Malibu, Calif.

(The Center Square) – California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday put in place a new statewide order requiring individuals to wear masks or other face coverings in most public places.

Newsom said he put the order in place to continue efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

“Simply put, we are seeing too many people with faces uncovered – putting at risk the real progress we have made in fighting the disease," Newsom said in a statement. "California’s strategy to restart the economy and get people back to work will only be successful if people act safely and follow health recommendations. That means wearing a face covering, washing your hands and practicing physical distancing.”

There are some exemptions, including children under 2, individuals with a condition that makes wearing a mask difficult, persons dining at a restaurant, and individuals engaged in outdoor recreation.

According to a news release, the mask rule applies when individuals are:

  • Inside of, or in line to enter any indoor public space;
  • Obtaining health care service;
  • Waiting for or riding on public transportation;
  • Working when interacting with another individual or individuals;
  • Working in any space visited by members of the public.

​Dan McCaleb is the executive editor of The Center Square. He welcomes your comments. Contact Dan at dmccaleb@thecentersquare.com.

Executive Editor

Dan McCaleb is a veteran editor and has worked in journalism for more than 25 years. Most recently, McCaleb served as editorial director of Shaw Media and the top editor of the award-winning Northwest Herald in suburban Chicago.