On July 1, 2020, Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome announced a requirement that all commercial and non-profit entities in East Baton Rouge Parish, but outside the cities of Baker, Central, and Zachary, which provide goods or services directly to the public must implement a “No Mask – No Service” policy. The policies must go into effect by July 3, 2020 at 12:01 p.m., and require:
- All employees and visitors must wear face coverings that cover the nose and mouth while inside the commercial or non-profit premises and while performing any activity that will necessarily involve close contact or proximity to workers or the public;
- The policy must be posted conspicuously at or near all entrances in clear view of any employees or members of the public entering the premises; and,
- All persons over the age of two must participate in wearing the face covering at all times while inside all commercial or non-profit entity premises.
Exceptions to the policy include:
- When compliance poses a mental or physical health, safety, or security risk due to medical condition, mental health condition, or disability;
- When visibility of the mouth is necessary for communication with a person who is hearing impaired;
- When the person is eating or drinking at a restaurant, coffee shop, dining area, food court, bar, or nightclub;
- When the person is at a gym or fitness center (although the covering must be worn when entering and exiting the facility);
- When temporary removal of the cover is required to receive a service involving the area of the nose or mouth (i.e., dental services); or
- When the face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work, as determined by federal, state, or local workplace safety regulation or guidelines.
The Baton Rouge Police and Fire Departments have the authority to enforce the order with a tiered system of consequences:
- Report of a first violation results in a visit from BRPD or BRFD and a courtesy notification;
- Report of a second violation results in a visit from BRPD or BRFD and a documented warning; and,
- Report of a third violation will result in issuance of a summons.
Face coverings should also be worn in outdoor group settings, where social distancing is not feasible. Violations are misdemeanors and the summons will result in a judge deciding whether to issue a fine, and if so, for what amount.
BRAC will be joined by Mayor Broome and members of her staff for a Q&A webinar about the Order on Thursday July 2, 2020 at 1:30PM. Register to attend and submit questions here.
As BRAC’s senior vice president of economic competitiveness, Liz leads the organization’s public policy advocacy, strategy, research, and reform activities aimed at advancing the quality of life and economic competitiveness of the Baton Rouge Region.