California will align with CDC mask guidance on June 15

Public health officials in California announced that the state will follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention mask guidance on June 15th.

"Fully vaccinated people can resume everyday activities without wearing a mask, except in a few limited settings that are required by federal and state rules," state Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said Wednesday during a briefing on the updated guidance.

In high-risk settings such as homeless shelters, nursing homes, prison and detention centers, public transportation, and indoor K-12 schools, face masks are required.

If vaccinated Californians still want to wear masks outside of those settings, they can do so.

Health officials said businesses must have signage indicating that unvaccinated people should wear face coverings, but they are not required to ask customers their vaccination status.

If a customer enters an establishment without a mask, the assumption is that they are vaccinated.

This week, business owners in San Francisco told KTVU they're concerned about having enough staff to handle the influx of patrons as the state fully reopens. 

What will California look like after June 15? 

The State will also have restrictions in place for mega events. These are defined as indoor events with greater than 5,000 people and outdoor events with more than 10,000 people. Attendees at indoor mega events will have to prove they are vaccinated or provide a negative COVID test in order to prevent the spread of disease that led to the pandemic and its lockdowns. 

The state health department is only recommending vaccine verification or a negative test for outdoor mega events starting on the 15th. 

At Wednesday's special California Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board meeting, State workplace regulators hastily reconsidered masking rules designed to protect employees from the novel coronavirus. 

Cal/OSHA withdrew mask rules they adopted last week that would only allow workers to go maskless if every employee in the room is fully vaccinated. 

Withdrawing that worksite rule allows the board to consider changes at its June 17 meeting and potentially have them go into effect by month's end.

While the vote could not happen yet without advance public notice, Cal/OSHA says it will come at their next meeting June 17. Whatever decision is made, business groups have said Governor Gavin Newsom can override the board. Newsom's office has said he hopes the board's decisions and any revisions will be based on the latest science available. 

State health officials remind that 15% of the population, children up to 11 years of age, are not yet eligible for the vaccine. They remain at risk to COVID-19 exposure and infection until full community immunity is reached. 

For now, it appears there will be mask requirements for this vulnerable population at K-12 schools, pending further review and guidance from the CDC.