King County requires masks for outdoor events regardless of vaccination status

King County requires masks for outdoor events regardless of vaccination status

Seattle – King County Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchen released an update Thursday to a King County mask order that requires masks at any outdoor event with 500 or more attendees.

The question comes amid the recent surge in COVID-19 cases due to variable delta and growing pressures on the health care system, according to a press release from King County Executive Dow Constantine.

The order applies to all people 5 years of age and older, whether vaccinated or not, and will go into effect on Tuesday, September 7.

The press release urges anyone 5 years of age or older who cannot stay 6 feet away from non-relatives to wear a mask.

“King County is committed to prioritizing people, and today’s order fully recognizes the risks to communities and our health care system if we do not take action now to prevent further spread of COVID-19,” Constantine said.

King County has one of the highest vaccination rates of any major metropolitan area in the United States. However, there are still an estimated 750,000 people in King County who have not been vaccinated, including children under the age of 12 who do not have the opportunity to get vaccinated.

There are approximately 320,000 King County residents who are eligible for vaccination and have not yet been vaccinated.

“We will continue to adapt our response measures to the reality of the evolving COVID-19 outbreak. The delta variant is more contagious through the air and causes more severe disease in adults and we have a high level of transmission in the community in King County and Washington State,” Duchenne said.

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Masks remain mandatory in King County for all indoor environments for everyone 5 years of age and older.

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