Details Released On Michigan’s New Mask Directive
Governor Whitmer announced Friday that Michigan would follow new CDC directives on masks, but the details weren’t out until a little later. You can view the official language for the updated order from the State of Michigan here.
The new directive requires all unvaccinated Michiganders to wear a face mask when gathering indoors but includes exceptions for children younger than 2 and for people who cannot medically tolerate a mask. Other exceptions include instances when people are:
- Eating or drinking while seated in a designated area or at a private residence.
- Receiving a medical or personal care service for which removal of the face mask is necessary.
- Asked to temporarily remove a face mask for identification purposes.
- Communicating with someone who is deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing and whose ability to see the mouth is essential to communication.
- Actively engaged in a public safety role, including but not limited to law enforcement, firefighters, or emergency medical personnel, and where wearing a face mask would seriously interfere in the performance of their public safety responsibilities.
- Engaging in a religious service.
- Giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience as long as the audience is at least 12 feet away from the speaker.
- Engaging in an activity that requires removal of a mask not listed in another part of this section, and is in a facility that provides ventilation that meets or exceeds 60ft³/min of outdoor airflow per person.
- The new mandate requires businesses, offices, schools, organized events "or other operation(s)" to prohibit indoor gatherings unless there is a "good faith effort" to ensure everyone, including employees, comply with the mandate. The order remains in effect through 11:59 p.m. on May 31.
Do masks need to be worn while playing sports?
- Starting 9 a.m. Saturday, no masks will be required for outdoor sports — regardless of a person's vaccination status.
- For indoor sports, those who are not fully vaccinated or meet other exceptions listed above will be required to wear a mask.
- COVID-19 testing requirements still apply to athletes ages 13-19.
How will people know who's been vaccinated and who hasn't?
For the most part, you won't, which has many legal and medical experts worried.
Can businesses still enforce mask-wearing?
Private businesses can still decide if they want to keep the mask requirements in place.
What about other public places? Can they still require masks for vaccinated people?
Yes. Every state court in Michigan is still mandating masks for employees and visitors. Every court has different rules about exceptions to the mask rule. Check this list for more information on your local court.
Can business owners require employees to disclose their vaccination status?
Employers can ask about vaccination status and ask for proof of vaccination to ensure that the employer is properly following CDC guidelines and to protect other employees and the general public.
Can businesses require workers to get COVID-19 vaccines?
Yes, they can. But if a company does require workers to be vaccinated, it could be sued.
Consult your lawyer before making any of these decisions.