What will CDC's new indoor masking guidelines mean for SoCal residents?

As new COVID-19 cases continue to trend downward nationwide and more Americans take the vaccine, how much longer will we need to continue bringing our masks to public places and gatherings?

While the CDC announced a more relaxed stance on mask-wearing for fully-vaccinated Americans on Thursday, its updated guideline on face coverings brings more questions than answers. Will businesses be forced to take down their "masks required" signs on their front doors? Will all 50 states soon follow suit? Will we need to have a vaccine passport with us at all times? Will unmasked Americans need to show proof of vaccination while they're out in public areas?

As of Thursday, the updated CDC guideline still calls for wearing masks in crowded indoor settings like public transportation, plane rides, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: CDC says fully vaccinated can stop wearing masks indoors and outdoors in most settings

FOX 11 made calls to SoCal counties to hear how local health departments are approaching CDC's relaxed stance on mask-wearing for vaccinated Americans.


Los Angeles County says they won't change its current guidance until the state and the OSHA board update their state guidance. The board meets on May 20, so no changes before then, according to Los Angeles County's Public Health Director, Dr. Barbara Ferrer.

Can I toss my mask in Los Angeles County? 

No, definitely have them handy.


FOX 11 is awaiting a response from Orange County's health officials regarding its current and future stances on wearing masks. Check back for updates.


Riverside County officials tell FOX 11 they are reviewing CDC's new guidelines. Like Los Angeles County, Riverside County will follow the state's guidelines when they are announced.

Can I toss my mask in Riverside County?

No, definitely have them handy.


San Bernardino County doesn’t have a mask order to repeal or modify. The county falls under the jurisdiction of the state mask order, officials tell FOX 11.

Can I toss my mask in San Bernardino County?

No, definitely have them handy.


Ventura County follows the California Department of Public Health with regards to mask mandates. The county plans to align with the state once it announces changes, officials tell FOX 11.

Can I toss my mask in Ventura County?

No, definitely have them handy.


As of Thursday, fully vaccinated Californians are not required to wear face coverings outdoors except when attending crowded outdoor events, such as live performances, parades, fairs, festivals or sporting events. Those who have not elected to take the vaccine are required to wear face coverings outdoors any time social distancing can't be maintained, according to the California Department of Public Health.

Earlier in the week, Governor Gavin Newsom generated national headlines after he told FOX 11's Elex Michaelson California's mask mandate could be rolled back soon.

In his original comment Tuesday, Gov. Newsom said if the state does lift its tier restrictions on June 15, the date Newsom picked to fully reopen California's economy, the mask mandate also be eliminated, aside from large indoor gatherings.

However, Gov. Newsom did some backtracking Wednesday, adding clarification to the comment he made on the future of mask mandates in California:

"We will be updating our mask guidelines. Outdoor masking, if we reach that threshold, will be substantially — in fact, will be eliminated," Gov. Newsom said Wednesday. "Indoor activities, we will still likely have some mask guidelines and mandates but we hope sooner than later that those will be lifted as well."

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Newsom clarifies mask comments: Outdoor mask mandate will end after June 15

Below is the full guideline on mask-wearing in California: