Englewood, Colorado, a suburb of Denver, is requiring all residents to wear face masks amid a spike in Covid19 cases. Failure to comply with the requirement can now result in large fines, jail time, or both.
An emergency order was issued by City Manager J. Shawn News and approved by the city council on Monday. It went into effect on Thursday. The order states that everyone over the age of 6 is now required to wear a mask while outside of their homes.
Face masks must be worn inside any retail or commercial business, government office or health care facility. They must also be worn when riding on public transportation as well as inside taxis or ride-sharing vehicles.
They will not be required inside offices as long as co-workers can maintain a distance of 6 ft. away from each other, and there are no clients or customers in the room.
First offenders will be fined $15. The fine for subsequent offenses increases to $25. But the order states that a maximum penalty of up to $2,650, 360 days behind bars or both, can be applied.
There have been conflicting messages from authorities over the last several months on the efficacy of face masks in battling Covid19. Authorities seem to have reached a consensus that they slow the spread of the virus, but some mask manufacturers dispute that claim.