Update: On July 1, Mayor Giménez signed an order requiring every person in Miami-Dade County to wear a mask both indoors and outdoors while in public spaces.
Face masks have been a requirement for months, but now you’ll have to wear them more than just indoors.
On Monday afternoon, several representatives from the Miami-Dade County League of Cities Mayors Coalition held a live press conference to announce the new requirements around masks: Effectively immediately, face coverings must be worn while in public. Formerly mandatory only inside establishments, having your nose and mouth covered is a requirement when walking to and from your car, in parking lots, in parks and while engaging in passive outdoor activities, among other open-air situations. The penalty for not following the guidelines will be the same as what’s currently in place for other emergency orders: punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a fine up to $500.
“Enforcement is no doubt going to be a challenge but just as we implemented the stay-at-home order, we’ll enforce this,” said City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez. The decision follows a troubling upward trend in positive Covid-19 cases that hover around the 10-percent benchmark the CDC points to as worrisome. There’s been a large increase in the volume of people between the ages of 18 and 35 testing positive. In the City of Miami, these spikes are being observed in area codes 33142, 33125 and 33126. But the problem persists beyond cities’ limits. “Our residents and our businesses come in and out of all of our cities. We’re all on the same page and we ask you to follow the rules,” said Pinecrest Mayor Joseph Corradino, who was also present at the conference.
While Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Giménez has yet to issue a countywide order regarding the use of masks (he did issue an order for businesses), the league of cities is taking precautions to mitigate the swell before resorting to another shutdown. “We can enforce wearing face coverings indoors and explore other things before we do the big prophylactic we did earlier that had such an effect on our economy,” added Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber. “It would not be responsible to rely on irrational optimism for this thing to go away; the only way we’re gonna beat this is by following the rules.”
Editor's note: According to the Miami Herald, only Key Biscayne, North Miami Beach, Aventura, City of Miami and Miami Shores will require the mask, though mayors from other municipalities were present at the conference. Ultimately, without a written order, it is unclear "exactly which cities were agreeing to follow Miami’s lead on mask rules."
On Monday afternoon, Miami-Dade Mayor Giménez released the following statement: "Wearing masks outdoors in congested cities like Miami, North Miami Beach, Aventura, Hialeah and Miami Gardens is a good idea. I commend the mayors of those cities for making that a requirement."
June 30: The City of Miami Beach is now requiring the use of face masks in public.
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