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Olszewski orders anyone age 2+ to wear masks indoors

Posted at 1:38 PM, Jul 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-21 17:15:38-04

TOWSON, Md. — Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski on Tuesday ordered everyone ages two and up to wear a mask inside all public places.

The new directive goes into effect on Thursday at 9 a.m.

There are only two exceptions where masks won't be required indoors. One is if you're eating inside a restaurant and the other is for those with a medical condition, that prevents them from wearing a face covering.

Governor Larry Hogan had already previously ordered everyone to wear a mask inside most indoor spaces including food stores, retailers, salons, spas, malls, parlors, doctors offices, pharmacies, airports, and public transportation.

While stopping short of ordering restaurants in the county to close down indoor dining, Olszewski called on Hogan to consider allowing only outdoor dining.

The new order urges everyone in Baltimore County to wear masks outdoors, but doesn't require them.

Olszewski also criticized Hogan for no longer holding weekly conference calls with the state's county executives, amid the recent rise in COVID-19 cases.

“Maryland’s increasing case numbers are troubling and public health officials have consistently warned us about how indoor dining and congregating in bars can play a significant role of increased COVID-19 case counts," said Olszewski. "We have also seen that patchwork approaches to determining which businesses should be opened don’t work. I urge Governor Hogan to reengage with local leaders so that we can work in partnership to take statewide action to protect public health and save lives.”

Over the last seven-days, Baltimore County has averaged 97 new COVID-19 cases a day, exceeding the previous peak of 94 in May. Meanwhile, the County’s positivity rate has increased since July 7 to 5.92 percent.