Gov. Charlie Baker, during his daily briefing on Friday afternoon, announced that he has signed an executive order requiring people to wear a face covering while in public when they are not able to physical distance from others. The order goes into place on Wednesday, May 6th and does not apply to children under the age of 2. 

Here is the full press release from the Governor’s office:

Baker-Polito Administration Orders Use of Mask or Face Covering in Public, Announces Increased Community Health Center COVID-19 Testing Capacity

BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration today issued an order requiring the use of masks or face coverings in public places where they cannot socially distance from others. The Administration also announced expanded community health center COVID-19 testing capacity at centers throughout the Commonwealth.

Mask and Face Covering Order: The Baker-Polito Administration has ordered all residents over the age of two to use a face covering or mask in public places where maintaining proper social distancing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are not possible. This statewide order goes into effect on May 6th and supersedes previously issued guidance relative to mask use. 

This order applies to all workers and customers of businesses and other organizations that are currently open to the public and permitted to operate as COVID-19 Essential Businesses, such as grocery stores, pharmacies and other retail stores. Residents are also required to wear a mask or face covering at all times when using any means of transportation service or public mass transit.

A face covering may include anything that covers your nose and mouth, including a mask, scarf or bandanna. Health care masks should not be used and should be preserved for health care workers and first responders. Cloth masks should not be worn by young children under the age of two, persons with difficulty breathing, or those who are unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. Instructions on how to make a cloth mask are available from the CDC here.

Read the Order here.

Community Health Care Center COVID-19 Testing: In continued partnership with Quest Diagnostics and the Mass League of Community Health Centers, the Baker-Polito Administration today announced further expansion of COVID-19 testing at additional centers throughout the Commonwealth.

This testing expansion builds upon the previously announced increased testing, bringing the total to 18 Community Health Centers. The new facilities that will begin or expand testing include:

  • Lynn Community Health Center
  • Holyoke Health Center
  • North Shore Community Health Center
  • South Boston Community Health Center
  • Community Health Center of Franklin County