Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Local Face Covering Executive Order 2020-25
On June 18, 2020, Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings announced an Executive Order 2020-23 Requiring Face Coverings in public places. On June 24, 2020, Mayor Demings issued Executive Order 2020-25 Requiring Face Coverings (the “Order”) which superseded the prior order.
Executive Order 2020-25 requires every person working, living, visiting or doing business in Orange County to wear a facial covering consistent with CDC guidelines while in a place that is open to the public, whether indoors or outdoors.
When did the order go into effect and when will it expire?
The Order took effect on June 24, 2020 at 1:50 p.m. EDT. The Order will remain in effect until further notice.
To whom does this order apply?
The Order applies to every person working, living, visiting or doing business in Orange County while in a place that is open to the public, whether indoors or outdoors.
Why do I need to wear a mask?
There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that social distancing and wearing face coverings are effective ways to slow the spread of the virus. The CDC recommends wearing face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. The use of face coverings and social distancing are important public health approaches to slow the transmission of COVID-19.
How will this order be enforced?
The Order does not currently contain an enforcement provision, but instead relies on community cooperation and encourages businesses to ensure that their employees and customers are wearing face coverings in accordance with CDC guidelines.
However, Executive Order 2020-51 addresses penalties and fines against businesses that violate COVID-19 guidelines.
If I do not have a mask, how can I acquire one?
All residents who are tested for COVID-19 at an Orange County Health Services testing site will be given a free box of face masks and hand sanitizer. Free testing locations can be found at www.ocfl.net/covid19. Orange County has also offered free personal protective equipment (PPE) distribution for small businesses. Visit www.ocfl.net/ppe for more information.
If you are unable to visit an Orange County Health Services testing site, a proper face covering can also easily be made at home. Visit Orange County’s newsroom to follow a simple video teaching you how to make a face covering.
What is a “face covering” defined as?
A face covering is a uniform piece of material that securely covers a person’s nose and mouth and remains affixed in place without the use of one’s hands.
What are the exceptions in the mandate?
The following individuals are not required to wear a face covering under the Order:
- Children under the age of two years old or children unable to effectively comply with the face covering Order
- Persons for whom a face covering would cause impairment due to an existing health condition, including people with disabilities. This exception also includes individuals who cannot tolerate a face covering for medical, sensory or other conditions.
- Persons working in a profession who do not have any face-to-face interactions with the public.
- Persons working in a profession where use of a face covering will not be compatible with the duties of the profession.
- Persons exercising while maintaining social distancing.
- Persons who are developmentally unable to comply, including children who may not be able to effectively wear a face covering.
What do I need to present to businesses if I fall into an exception category for the Order?
The Order does not require anyone to present any health information. Whether a business permits someone to enter its business is a decision for that particular business to make.
Is there an exception in the Order for government entities?
No. There is no exception. Employees of governmental entities shall abide by their specific face covering protocols consistent with CDC guidelines.
What if I’m exercising? Do I need to wear a mask?
If you are exercising or doing some sort of physical activity (e.g., fishing, swimming, boating, walking a dog, playing golf, etc.) while also observing CDC social distancing guidelines, you are not required to wear a face covering.
What if I’m simply walking along the street to get to my destination or at a pool sunbathing?
All individuals in Orange County are required to wear a face covering consistent with CDC guidelines while in public – especially if you are not able to maintain social distancing guidelines. Know and follow the CDC guidelines and wear a face covering to protect yourself and others. Face coverings and social distancing are both important in reducing the spread of the virus.
How do I report a business not following the face covering mandate?
According to the Order, businesses are encouraged to prohibit entry of each person not wearing a face covering. Private businesses are also required to follow CDC guidelines and/or industry standards as they relate to face coverings.
According to Orange County’s Consumer Confidence Survey, which had more than 15,000 respondents, 69% of consumers are more comfortable patronizing businesses that take health and safety measures (e.g., mandate face coverings, temperature checks, etc.).
If you have an issue or concern about a business not following CDC guidelines, you should contact the management for that business directly to address those concerns. Ultimately, if you do not feel comfortable with the way a business is operating, you may not want to patronize that particular business.
However, Executive Order 2020-51 addresses penalties and fines against businesses that violate COVID-19 guidelines. You can report businesses to 311.
When do I have to wear a face covering at a restaurant? I can’t wear it when I’m eating.
If a business has employees and patrons within six feet of each other, then both the employee and patron must wear a face covering, unless the wearing of the patron’s face covering would impede the patron’s service, in which case only the service provider must wear a face covering. The face covering may be removed by patrons while seated to eat and drink.
All passengers on LYNX along with employees are required to wear a face covering. Please also public practice social distancing by keeping a space of at least six feet in between each commuter. SunRail highly encourages all passengers to wear face coverings.
Downloadable PDFs in English, Spanish and Creole.