Masks have been recommended throughout the COVID-19 pandemic but, not necessarily required. As of Monday, that will change.

Many businesses in El Paso have been requiring their patrons, vendors, employees, etc to wear masks to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. It was at the businesses' discretion but, as of Monday, June 22nd, it will be mandatory for all businesses to require masks, and failure to do so can result in fines of up to $500 per violation.

According to epstrong.com, effective Monday:

  • All businesses must require employees, including volunteers, to have a face covering when either in an area or performing an activity where six (6) feet of separation from others is not feasible;
    • All businesses must require visitors, to include customers, contractors and vendors, to wear face coverings while on the business’s premises;
    • All businesses must post the Health and Safety Policy required by this Directive in a conspicuous location sufficient to provide notice to employees, volunteers and visitors; and
    • The Health and Safety Policy required to be developed and implemented by this Directive may also include additional measures such as temperature checks and health screenings.

People who are actually working out or engaging in exercise at gyms are exempt from the mask requirement. I would assume .. again, I assume ... that people will have to wear a mask to enter a restaurant or bar but, would be allowed to remove it while actually eating or drinking.

Like it or not, keep that mask handy.folks. Although we have begun to reopen El Paso, the state of Texas and the United States in general; we are clearly not out of the woods yet with regard to the pandemic and its associated health risks. For more info on COVID-19 related matters, click here.