Mask Orders %26 Requirements Local governments are prohibited from requiring people to wear masks, with some exceptions. The state order that individuals must wear masks or face coverings in most public places is no longer in effect. Meanwhile, private companies remain free to demand masks, but a state law prohibits them from requiring proof of vaccination. However, cruise lines operating out of Galveston require documentation of vaccinations from passengers, saying they are exempt from that rule.
Regarding whether employers can continue to demand masks, the answer is clearly yes. In fact, just this morning, the wall street journal reported that some of the largest U.S. UU. Retail chains, theaters, hotels and restaurants operating in Texas announced that they will continue to require the use of masks.
Admittedly, it may be more difficult for companies to justify mask requirements to customers in the absence of government bans, but it seems that many companies will continue to require their employees and customers to wear masks anyway. Private companies, such as Kroger, H-E-B and CVS, may require you to wear a mask if you want to enter their business. So far, they haven't made any changes, except if you're vaccinated, you don't have to. Business owners will be able to decide for themselves if they are going to serve customers who do not wear masks.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued Travis and Austin County officials in March for imposing a local mask mandate despite Abbott's order banning such requirements at the time. Bell County Judge David Blackburn provided the following guidance for businesses and local governments:. We've received a lot of questions from people wondering why some companies continue to require masks if the statewide mask mandate ends, and we've created a legal FAQ section on the subject to help address this question. This confusing situation involves disputes over Texas law, the effectiveness of mask mandates, the appropriateness of requiring vaccines that have only been provisionally approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the conflict between Abbott's preferences and federal guidelines, and the meaning of freedom.
But a state law Abbott signed on June 16 goes further, saying that a company in this state may not require a customer to provide any documentation certifying the customer's COVID-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery upon entering, accessing, or receiving service from the company. While the governor “strongly encouraged people to wear masks when it is “not feasible to maintain six feet of social distance from another person,” he made it clear that no Texas government entity could require a face covering, except in counties where the number of people hospitalized for COVID-19 patients exceed 15% of the total capacity of the hospital. On March 2, while waiting in line in the parking lot at NRG Stadium in Houston to receive my first COVID injection, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced that, starting March 10, there would no longer be COVID-19 operating limits for Texas businesses. A Williamson County judge also requires visitors and employees entering the Williamson County Justice Center to wear masks, as the county recently entered its red COVID-19 risk level.
Regardless of what happens on the regulatory front, given the anxiety that many workers have felt, and continue to feel, about the obligation to return to work, requiring masks and taking other precautions to protect employees from exposure to COVID-19 is a good way for employers to show that they care about the well-being of your employees. The Texas Supreme Court seems to be inclined to side with Abbott in this dispute over legal interpretation. Following COVID protocols, including wearing masks, has been part of daily life in the pandemic until now. Greg Abbott announced that he would end the mask mandate across the state and lift restrictions on entrepreneurship.
Last week, Austin Mayor Steve Adler urged City Manager Spencer Cronk to enforce a vaccination requirement for city employees. Under the executive order issued by Abbott, companies will be able to require customers to wear masks in their facilities. . .