California reimposing indoor mask mandate as COVID cases rise

With COVID-19 cases rising anew in the state, California is reimposing a statewide mask mandate on indoor settings, state officials announced Monday.

The mandate will take effect from Dec. 15 to Jan. 15, 2022, according to Dr. Mark Ghaly, secretary of the state Health & Human Services Agency.

Many counties across California, including Los Angeles, already have such mask mandates in place, Ghaly noted. The state rule will cover those counties that do not – representing about 50% of the state’s population.

The new rules require the wearing of masks in all indoor public settings.

“Even a 10% increase in indoor masking can reduce case transmission significantly,” Ghaly noted.

Ghaly said the state has seen a 47% increase in COVID-19 case rates across California since Thanksgiving, jumping from 9.6 cases per 100,000 Californians to now more than 14 per 100,000.