Starting Monday, July 6, people will be required to wear a face mask inside public spaces in Edina.
That's according to an executive order Edina Mayor Jim Hovland signed on July 1, a news release says. The Edina City Council held a meeting June 29 to discuss a masking policy, during which council members agreed requiring a mask is a reasonable step to protect public health during the coronavirus pandemic.
Under the city's policy, people in Edina must cover their nose and mouth with a mask or cloth face covering at retail establishments and city-owned public facilities. However, masks don't need to be worn inside city recreation facilities, such as Braemar Arena and Edinborough Park, when social distancing can be maintained.
People who are eating or drinking, who are under the age of 5, who have medical conditions that make it hard to breathe, who are deaf/hard of hearing or work with those who are, and who can't remove a mask without help are exempt from the mask requirement.
The mayor's emergency order is enacted for three days. The City Council will hold a special meeting on July 8 to consider extending the policy.
A mask helps the spread of COVID-19
Health experts say masks play a role in protecting others from the wearer's germs, which could help slow the spread of COVID-19 at a time when cases are on the rise again in the U.S.
Since the virus spreads by respiratory droplets that travel when we talk, cough, sneeze, breathe, etc., face masks – even the homemade ones – can help contain some of those droplets, limiting the potential spread of the virus to others, especially from those who may not know they have the coronavirus. Here's how to wear one correctly.
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend people wear cloth face coverings in public, especially in places where it can be difficult to maintain a distance of six feet between you and others.
This guidance has prompted other cities like Minneapolis and St. Paul to issue orders requiring people to wear face masks when inside public spaces. And some businesses, such as Menards and Costco, have required shoppers and employees to wear masks, while places like the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport are strongly encouraging people to don a mask when in public spaces.
Last week, the Minnesota Medical Association urged state leaders to make face masks mandatory statewide in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19. Thirteen states already have mandatory mask policies.