Denver mayor issues order requiring face masks in certain public settings

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DENVER — Mayor Michael Hancock on Friday issued a public health order requiring Denver residents to wear face masks in certain public settings, beginning May 6.

Residents and employees will be required to wear face coverings while inside of, or waiting in line to enter, certain businesses, facilities or locations, such as retail stores, bus stops or health care facilities, the order said.

“When we’re at the grocery store, work or any other business, my face covering protects you and your face covering protects me,” Hancock said in a news release. “The virus isn’t going away any time soon. By wearing a face covering, you’re doing your part to reduce the spread of infections and keep everyone safer.”

Read the full Denver order here.

The city news release said “multiple agencies” will be involved in enforcing the order, with the goal of compliance. Anyone violating the order could face a civil penalty of up to $999, per violation.

Hancock has said he was planning to issue an order requiring the wearing of face masks, though Denver’s stay-at-home order is expected to expire after May 8. Other cities in the state have issued similar orders over the last week.

The Denver order defines a face covering as a cloth, fabric or other soft permeable material that covers the nose and mouth. Mask can be made at home from household materials or purchased. Medical-grade masks such as surgical and N95 masks should be reserved for health care workers and first responders.