Coronavirus impact: Bay Area counties now require people wear face coverings in public, here's how the 1st day went

ByCornell Barnard KGO logo
Sunday, April 19, 2020
5 Bay Area counties now require residents to wear face coverings
A majority of the Bay Area counties now mandate the public to wear a face covering in public to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus. Some cities will not be enforced right away, but officials hope some start wearing coverings right away.

MARIN, Calif. (KGO) -- Aries Jackson is working his food delivery job in San Francisco, where he's now required to wear a mask.

"Well it is what it is, at least the rate of the virus is going down," said Jackson.

RELATED: Here are the Bay Area counties now requiring residents to wear face masks during COVID-19 pandemic

San Francisco is now one of six Bay Area counties that have announced requirements for people to wear a face covering in public, including Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Marin and Sonoma counties.

"I think we have to protect the whole community, if we're going to be out let's do it," said Jen Miller.

The order means employees at essential businesses like grocery stores must mask up. Workers at Marina Supermarket on Chestnut Street were following the new rules but that includes customers too.

"If a customer comes into the store without a mask, we can refuse service, if we have a mask we can give them one," said store manager Darryl Sultan.

RELATED: How to make a mask, face covering in less than 2 minutes

Southern California resident Jennifer Ruvalcaba, known as Randomly Riley on Instagram, shows us how to make face masks at home.

We found most people were covering up, but not everybody.

"I thought it was mandatory, I'm alarmed people aren't listening," said Susan from San Francisco.

Mayor London Breed urges citizens to refrain from mask shaming or confrontations.

"If you're not a police officer, don't act like one. We don't want people to confront one another," said Mayor Breed.

RELATED: How close was California to having a New York-level coronavirus crisis?

Marin County's mask requirement doesn't take effect until Wednesday but many businesses are already on board.

"I feel like we gotta play the game, it's hard times but we gotta play the game," said Timothy Ippolito from San Rafael.

Santa Clara County wants people to wear face coverings but won't make it a requirement. San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo says if you've got one, wear it.

"Whether it's mandatory or not, we should all wear them," said Mayor Liccardo.

San Francisco won't start enforcing its new order until Wednesday, in Marin County, if you're caught without one it could mean a fine of $50 to $1,000, but officials are hoping residents will comply voluntarily.

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