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Council Encourages Use of Face Coverings

City Council Passes Resolution Encouraging Use of Face Coverings in Public Spaces


June 30, 2020



Tanisha Jumper, Media and Communications, tjumper@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5152
Maria Lee, Media and Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054


City Council Passes Resolution Encouraging Use of Face Coverings in Public Spaces


TACOMA, Wash. – With cases of COVID‐19 in Pierce County once again on the rise, the City Council has passed Resolution 40620, encouraging the use of face coverings in public spaces. The resolution was sponsored by Mayor Victoria Woodards, At-Large Council Member Lillian Hunter, District 2 Council Member Robert Thoms, and District 4 Council Member Catherine Ushka. 

“Tonight’s resolution comes in direct support of Gov. Jay Inslee’s call for the use of face coverings across all of Washington,” said Mayor Woodards. “The success we saw during ‘Stay Home, Stay Healthy’ was largely due to the community members who looked out for one another by abiding by state guidance. To preserve the progress we’ve made now that we have entered Safe Start Phase 2 we, as a community, need to demonstrate that same commitment to following health directives.”

“We must not risk our hard-fought progress,” said District 4 Council Member Ushka, who spearheaded the development of the resolution. “Even with relaxed restrictions, we must maintain our commitment to preventing the spread of COVID-19 and wearing face coverings is one key way we can do that. The actions we take now are vital in our efforts to restore the health of both our community and our economy.” 

Effective June 8, 2020, Gov. Inslee had required all employees across Washington state to wear face coverings at work if they are not working alone or cannot maintain physical distance. The Tacoma-Pierce County Board of Health had passed a resolution on June 17, 2020 encouraging Pierce County residents to use face coverings when in public spaces. Following evidence of an uptick in COVID-19 cases statewide, Gov. Inslee had made face coverings mandatory when in a public space effective June 26, 2020.


According to Gov. Inslee’s statewide mandate, there are specific exemptions for those who may be adversely impacted by wearing face coverings, and these exemptions include those with certain medical conditions and children under the age of two. Children aged two, three and four are encouraged, but not required, to wear face coverings in public with the assistance and supervision of an adult. Individuals may remove face coverings under certain circumstances, including while eating or drinking at a restaurant; while communicating with a person who is deaf or hard of hearing; and while outdoors in public areas, provided that a distance of six feet is maintained from people who are not members of their household.   

Besides wearing face coverings in public spaces, the City Council also encourages Tacoma community members to continue practicing good hygiene and sanitation, limit travel, and follow public health recommendations to reduce the spread of COVID‐19.

Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control also recommend that individuals over the age of 60 as well as individuals with underlying medical conditions – like heart disease, lung disease or diabetes – stay home as much as possible and avoid crowds.  

As the situation evolves, information about the City’s response to COVID-19 will be posted on the “What’s Going On” section of the City’s website. Information about COVID-19 is available at TPCHD.org/coronavirus.