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Proclamation to Require Face Coverings

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In an effort to curtail the spread of COVID-19, the City of Raleigh’s State of Emergency includes the required use of face coverings within the City. The declaration will take effect Friday, June 19 at 4 p.m.   

Emergency Proclamation

City of Raleigh, North Carolina 
June 17, 2020

WHEREAS, COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death by the SARS­Co V-2 virns, which is a new strain of coronavirus previously unidentified in humans and which can spread from person to person; and,

WHEREAS, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 is a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on January 30, 2020; and

WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (the "CDC") has warned of the high public health threat posed by COVID-19 globally and in the United States and has deemed it necessary to prohibit or restrict travel to areas designated by the CDC; and

WHEREAS, on January 31, 2020, the United States Department of Health and Human Services Secretary declared a public health emergency in the United States for COVID-19 under Section 391 of the Public Health Service Act; and

WHEREAS, on March 10, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper declared a State of Emergency for the State of North Carolina based on the public health emergency posed by COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, a State of Emergency was declared for the City of Raleigh under the authority granted to the City under Chapter 166A of the North Carolina General Statutes and Section 1-1051 of the City of Raleigh Code of Ordinances; and,

WHEREAS, health authorities, including the Centers for Disease Control, the Surgeon General of the United States, and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services have recommended the use of face coverings as a means of preventing the spread of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, on June 16, 2020, the City Council of the City of Raleigh, authorized the Mayor to impose restrictions on the activity and actions of persons who do not wear face coverings when the use of such face coverings may protect lives and public health; and  

WHEREAS, it is my desire to curtail the spread of COVID-19 within the City of Raleigh by requiring the use of face coverings by persons within the City of Raleigh, subject to the terms of this proclamation.

NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to the authority vested in me as the Mayor of the City of Raleigh, under Chapter 166A of the North Carolina General Statutes, Section 1-1051 of the City of Raleigh Code of Ordinances, and as authorized by the Raleigh City Council and in accordance with the Proclamation issued by me on March 13, 2020, I, Mary-Ann Baldwin, Mayor of the City of Raleigh, North Carolina, hereby proclaim and declare the following.

Section 1. Wearing of Face Coverings. All persons who are present within the jurisdiction of the City of Raleigh are required to wear a clean face covering any time they are, or will be, in contact with other people who are not household members in public or private spaces where it is not possible to maintain social distance or where recommended social distancing practices are not being followed. These spaces include grocery stores, pharmacies, business locations, parking lots, sidewalks, and public transit. While wearing the face covering, it is essential to still maintain social distance insofar as possible since social distancing is the best defense against the spread of the COVID-19.

A face covering is a material that covers the nose and mouth. It can be secured to the head with ties or straps or simply wrapped around the lower face. It can be made of a variety of materials, such as cotton, silk, or linen. A cloth face covering may be factory-made or sewn by hand or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, T-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels. Social distance, as referenced within this declaration, shall mean the current parameters established by the Governor by Executive Order and by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, including as such parameters may be amended in the future. 

Acceptable, reusable face covering options for the general public include: bandanas, neck gaiters, homemade face coverings, scarves, or tightly woven fabric such as cotton T-shirts and some types of towels. It is not required to wear face coverings during individual exercise outdoors, or while walking or exercising with other people from the same household, as long as social distance from others is maintained.

All restaurant, personal care, grooming, tattoo, and retail employees and staff shall wear a face covering while on duty. It is recommended that all businesses require customers to wear a face covering while inside the business Face coverings are not required:

  • For people whose religious beliefs prevent them from wearing a face covering.
  • For those who cannot wear a face covering due to a medical or behavioral condition.
  • For children under 12 years old.
  • For restaurant patrons while they are dining.
  • In private, individual offices.
  • When complying with directions of law enforcement officers.
  • In settings where it is not practical or feasible to wear a face covering, including when obtaining or rendering goods or services, such as the receipt of dental services or while swimming.
  • While with members of a family or the same household. 

Section 2. Applicability. The requirements established in this declaration shall supplement and be in addition to the other requirements associated with the COVID-19 State of Emergency within the City of Raleigh, including, but not limited to any requirements established by Wake County and the State of North Carolina. 

Section 3. Implementation. The intent of this declaration is to encourage voluntary compliance with the requirements established herein by businesses and persons within the City of Raleigh. Law enforcement and other public safety and emergency management personnel are strongly encouraged to educate and encourage voluntary compliance with this order. 

Section 4. Distribution. I hereby order this declaration: (a) to be distributed to the news media and other organizations calculated to  bring its contents to the attention of the general public; (b) to be filed with City Clerk and ( c) to be distributed to others as necessary to ensure proper implementation of this declaration.

Section 5. Effective Date and Time. This declaration shall take effect at 4:00 p.m., June 19, 2020 and shall remain in effect until modified or rescinded.

DECLARED this the 17th day of June, 2020, at 1 p.m.

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