By Sarah Moon, June 18 (CNN): Fully vaccinated Californians won’t have to wear masks in the workplace after state regulators voted Thursday to end mask requirements and the governor immediately signed an executive order to allow the changes to quickly take effect.
The new rule adopted by the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA), which passed 5-1, ended weeks of confusion and aligned workplace rules with the state Covid-19 guidelines, allowing fully vaccinated employees to be unmasked indoors. No face coverings will be required outdoors, regardless of vaccination status.
Cal/OSHA Deputy Chief Eric Berg has explained in the board meeting that masks could still be required during outbreaks. In addition, N95 respirator masks must be provided upon request for employees who work indoors or with other people.
While it is not required for employers to retain copies of vaccination cards, employers must document vaccination status. Self-attestation by employees will be allowed.
Physical distancing requirements were also eliminated under the new rule.
Just moments after Cal/OSHA voted to adopt the revised Covid-19 standards, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order so the rules could take effect more quickly than the standard 10-day review period.
“Cal/OSHA’s revisions align with the latest guidance from the California Department of Public Health – based on guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – on face coverings and eliminate physical distancing requirements, except for certain employees during outbreaks,” Newsom’s office said in a statement.