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The original item was published from 6/24/2020 4:19:02 PM to 7/18/2020 12:00:04 AM.

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Posted on: June 24, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Latest executive order requires masks be worn in public, pauses statewide reopening

[RALEIGH, NC, JUNE 24, 2020] – Earlier today Governor Roy Cooper signed Executive Order 147 delaying the next phase of the state’s pandemic recovery and requiring face masks be worn in public. This action comes among concerning increases in lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases, COVID-19 hospitalizations, and COVID-related deaths throughout the state over the last few weeks. The increases are attributed to more residents being out in public, providing more opportunity for person-to-person transmission.

Executive Order 147 pauses the reopening, extending the current phase (Phase 2) through July 17. This extension gives public health authorities time to evaluate the impacts of protective measures.

The executive order also requires that masks be worn in most public settings, particularly those where it is likely individuals will be within six feet of one another. The EO lists ten specific public settings -including retail establishments, restaurants, child care, transportation, and health care- where masks are required of employees and customers, whether inside or outside.

The executive order outlines exceptions to this requirement, but it also affirms businesses’ rights to use alternative service delivery methods for customers who cannot wear a mask.

Masks have been scientifically proven to reduce the chance of transmission in two ways. First, they reduce the amount of virus-carrying aerosols that are exhaled by infected (and often asymptomatic) individuals from circulating in the air. Second, they provide some protection against inhaling the virus. This fact, and the fact that an individual might be carrying the virus without knowing it, make mask wearing important even if the wearer does not have symptoms of COVID-19.    

The full order may be viewed here:

FAQs for EO 147 can be read here:

Information on the details of Phase 2 requirements can be found here:

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