Colorado Mask Mandate is Active. What Do You Need To Know?

On July 16, 2020, Colorado Governor Polis signed Executive Order D 2020 138 requiring people aged 11 or older in Colorado to wear a mask in public spaces.

Some things you should know:

  • The order went into effect at midnight and will remain in effect for 30 days, unless it is extended.
  • Who needs to wear a mask?
    • All individuals 11 years old or older must wear a face covering over their nose and mouth:
      • when entering or moving within any public indoor space,
      • or while using or waiting to use the services of any taxi, bus, light rail, train, car service, ride-sharing or similar service, or mass transportation operations.
  • A public indoor space is essentially any building that isn’t your residence or another’s residence.
    • A public indoor space is any enclosed indoor area that is publicly or privately owned, managed, or operated to which individuals have access by right or by invitation, expressed or implied, and that is accessible to the public, serves as a place of employment, or is an entity providing services. This includes, but is not limited to:
      • Government buildings
      • Nonprofits
      • Transportation
      • Houses of worship
      • Private country clubs or social clubs
      • Grocery stores
      • Hair salons
      • All offices, lobbies, elevators
      • Malls, retail stores
      • Indoor businesses, common areas
      • Medical facilities, nursing homes
      • Restaurants (if not seated)
      • Libraries
      • Museums
      • Theaters
      • Casinos
      • Gyms, including areas around indoor pools but not while swimming in the pool
      • If a business or entity provides services or goods both indoors and outdoors at a single location, a mask must be worn in the indoor portion of that business or entity
    • Public Indoor Space does not mean a person’s residence, including a room in a motel or hotel or a residential room for students at an educational facility.
  • Who is exempt from wearing masks in public indoor spaces?
    • People who are 10 years old and younger.
    • People who cannot medically tolerate a face covering.
      • Essentially, this means a person who has trouble breathing or anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face-covering without assistance, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Read more from the CDC about other reasons face coverings may not be possible in every situation or for some people.
      • Many cards that profess to medically excuse the holder from wearing a mask are fake, as outlined in this alert from the Department of Justice.
    • Children ages 2 and under should NOT wear masks or cloth face coverings.
    • Individuals performing the following activities are exempt from the requirements of the Executive Order while the activity is being performed (but must wear a mask otherwise):
      • Individuals who are hearing impaired or otherwise disabled or who are communicating with someone who is hearing impaired or otherwise disabled and where the ability to see the mouth is essential to communication;
      • Individuals who are seated at a food service establishment;
      • Individuals who are exercising alone or with others from the individual’s household and a face covering would interfere with the activity;
      • Individuals who are receiving a personal service where the temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service;
      • Individuals who enter a business or receive services and are asked to temporarily remove a face covering for identification purposes;
      • Individuals who are actively engaged in a public safety role such as law enforcement, firefighters, or emergency medical personnel;
      • Individuals who are officiating at a religious service; or
      • Individuals who are giving a speech for broadcast or an audience.
  • Does this mean my employees have to wear a mask while working in an office or a cube?
    • The order does not address this directly. In general:
      • If an employee is alone in a locked office or an office where others are not able to enter (invitation express or implied), they might not need a mask. If people can enter the office, they need to wear a mask. If they are entering, exiting, wandering around, meeting with others, or going into open or common areas, they need to mask up.
      • They should wear a mask while in a cube if it is not enclosed.
  • Businesses must post signs at entrances that instruct customers they must wear a mask when entering or moving around inside the business. You can find a sample poster, and a complete FAQ page here. The PDF version of the FAQ is here.
  • Any business that doesn’t comply is at risk of losing its license.

Employers Council can help. Please contact us with questions.