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City of Falls Church COVID-19 & Urgent Updates

Posted on: May 27, 2020

Mask and Face Covering Requirements and Complaints

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Report Concerns or Violations

  • Call 1-877-ASK-VDH3 (Virginia Department of Health)
  • Submit an Online Complaint (Virginia Department of Health)
  • Do NOT call the Fairfax Health Department or the City of Falls Church Police about compliance with the governor’s executive order for face coverings.

Face Coverings Required Inside Public Places at All Times, and Outside when Closer than 6 Feet from Others

This content appears courtesy of the Fairfax Health Department, the City’s health department, and Fairfax County.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam requires face coverings when people are inside public spaces. This includes all retail businesses like grocery stores and pharmacies, and entertainment and amusement businesses.

Everyone age 5 and up is required to wear a face mask indoors when not at their own home and outdoors when it’s not possible to social distance. “If you’re outdoors and you can’t stay six feet apart, you need to wear a mask,” Governor Northam said. “When you’re at work, wear a mask. When you’re watching your kid play soccer, wear a mask. That’s really simple and we can all do that.”

Face Covering Exceptions

There are exceptions to the requirement, however. Face coverings are not needed for:

  • Eating or drinking. 
  • Exercising. 
  • Children under the age of two. 
  • People with health conditions that keep them from wearing a covering. 
  • Communicating with people with hearing-impairments when the mouth needs to be visible. 
  • Getting medical treatment or government services when coverings can be removed temporarily. 
  • Participating in religious rituals. 

Face coverings also are not be required inside daycares, schools, or colleges and universities. 

Double Masks are Recommended by the CDC

  • Wear two masks when out of your home.
  • Make sure masks fit snugly against your face.
  • Choose masks with at least two layers.
  • Research based on a surgical mask worn under a cloth mask.

What Not to Do When Wearing Two Masks

  • Double-masking isn't recommended for all masks.
  • Don't combine two disposable masks, the CDC says: "Disposable masks are not designed to fit tightly and wearing more than one will not improve fit."
  • Don't layer another mask on top of a KN95, either. That mask should be used alone, the CDC says.

CDC's Mask Guidelines on Improving Mask Fit

  • Choosing a mask with a nose wire, which prevents air from leaking out along the top
  • Using a mask fitter or brace over a disposable or cloth mask, to prevent air from leaking out. These small, reusable devices cinch a cloth or medical mask to create a tighter fit and improve mask performance.
  • Make sure your mask fits snugly over your nose, mouth and chin: "If the mask has a good fit, you will feel warm air come through the front of the mask and may be able to see the mask material move in and out with each breath," the CDC says.
  • Add layers of material – either by using cloth mask with multiple layers of fabric or by wearing a disposable mask under a cloth mask.

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