'This surge is going faster': Mask mandate inevitable in SF, announcement to come next week

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- When it comes to mandating masks to protect from the Delta variant, it's not a matter of if, but when.

Friday afternoon both Mayor London Breed and Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax said action will likely be taken sometime next week.

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When San Francisco Mayor London Breed arrived at an outdoor event wearing a mask Friday, it was a clear sign of things to come.

"We are close to a mandate of wearing masks and I know people are tired of being told what to do but the facts is, this is where we are," said Breed.

Following that statement, the city's health director Dr. Grant Colfax said he will meet with other county health officials to take action as early as next week.

"Delta is causing the vast majority of our COVID cases. This surge is going faster than even the surge we saw in the fall or winter," explained Dr. Colfax.

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Carlos Miyahira owns Mi Lindo Peru in the Mission District. He says his staff never stopped wearing a mask.

"You wear your mask, sit down, we have had sanitizer to wash your hands, and us waiters wear our masks," said Miyahira.

While there are only a few cases, breakthrough infections are also being recorded. These are people fully vaccinated who are getting COVID. Colfax said we are here again because not enough people have gotten the vaccine.

The Bayview is the neighborhood with the highest number of people who have yet to be vaccinated, followed by Bernal Heights and Potrero Hill.

RELATED: Bay Area hospitals prepare for 4th COVID surge as cases projected to peak in few weeks

In the Mission, well-know activist Roberto Hernandez, who runs the Mission District Food Hub, said he knows a few who are still skeptical about getting the vaccine, despite the outreach.

"One of them, she was against getting the vaccine, she didn't have her children vaccinated and she had geared up, masked, followed all the procedures, she's in the hospital," revealed Hernandez.

"One specific person said, 'Roberto I know people that got the vaccine and got COVID after they got the vaccine, so how do you explain that?' I said, 'yeah well they're not dead, it's that simple,'" added Hernandez.

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