At a regular WeHo City Council meeting, on Monday, May 17, 2021, City Manager Paul Arevalo clarified some confusion regarding the current mask mandate in LA County. He pointed to a recent CDC mask mandate that does not align with Los Angeles mask requirements.
“It’s been somewhat of a roller coaster that the CDC went from being conservative to maybe too liberal with their information and everybody kind of got a little bit whipsawed,” he said. “Right now the county is maintaining the standards that we’ve been working with and it’s not going to change in the county until June 15th. That’s when they plan to align with the CDC guidelines. Masks are required for large events, public transportation, businesses in work places. They are required for unvaccinated people outdoors, even when distancing can be maintained. Face coverings are not required for fully vaccinated people who are outdoors, unless they’re in a crowded area. The standards haven’t changed. Again, the announcement by the CDC took a lot of people by surprise. I think it’s good news. I think it’s good reason to get vaccinated. We can be mask free indoor and out, but for now the County is continuing with the guidelines.”
The city manager also reiterated what was discussed at the previous meeting regarding the next in-person city council meeting. “Our goal is the meeting in July, that we will be in-person at the council chamber. As of now, it is limited to in-person,” he said. “It will be the council and key staff. We will continue to take public comment and use remote tools such as ZOOM. If we are to occupy the building in any manner, it will still likely be at limited capacity. We will maintain a hybrid system for that meeting maybe going forward. I think that there is a desire to be more flexible for community input. People being able to chime in via ZOOM is much easier than getting them in their car and get them to a council meeting.”
There was also a question about mixed messaging regarding the mask mandate at grocery stores. Some stores in WeHo are saying they no longer require masks indoors if you are vaccinated.
“I think Trader Joe’s, Target and other stores have said that people can come in maskless, but we’re under the county order,” Arevalo added. “Also what’s really a challenge is that it becomes the honor system. I don’t know for a fact who on this ZOOM call got vaccinated. It’s just an honor system, so people are going to be going in and you’re hoping people are doing the right thing. The short answer is the county order is still in effect at least until June 15th, so yes if you are indoors, you should be wearing a mask.”
On Monday, May 3, 2021, the West Hollywood City Council approved a Resolution terminating and superseding the City’s face covering requirements in public spaces to align the City’s policies with updated mask mandate issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and CDC guidelines.
Details of the revised Health Officer Order regarding face covering requirements and more are available on the LA County Public Health website: http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus.
Health officials urge all people to get vaccinated. Residents ages 12 to 16 years and older with internet access are urged to use www.VaccinateLACounty.com to sign up for a vaccination appointment. LA County call center is open daily from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. to help schedule appointments at (833) 540-0473.