Vaccinated? California No Longer Requires You to Wear a Mask at Work

Fully vaccinated workers will no longer be required to wear a mask regardless of whether their co-workers are unvaccinated, following new guidance from the California's workplace safety agency.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health's Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board voted June 17 to adopt new workplace masking and safety rules for the second time in two weeks, allowing fully vaccinated workers to forego wearing a mask if they document their vaccination status.

All employees will also not be required to wear a mask when working outdoors regardless of their vaccination status.

After the board's vote, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order to make the new rules effective at 12:01 a.m. today rather than after 10 days normally required for workplace safety changes.

“We're turning the page,” Newsom said during a briefing Thursday about both Cal/OSHA's guidelines and the state's reopening in general. “No more capacity limits, no more modifications, no more issues around physical and social distancing and now we are aligning with (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines.”

The new rules will require unvaccinated workers to continue wearing a mask indoors as they've been required to do throughout the pandemic.

Fully vaccinated employees will also not be required by the state to get tested for COVID-19 or quarantine if they are asymptomatic.

Employers must continue documenting their virus prevention standards, provide unvaccinated workers with N95 respirators upon request and evaluate their business' ventilation system to maximize proper air flow.

Until two weeks ago, workers had been required to wear a mask or other face covering regardless of their vaccination status or whether they worked indoors or outside.

At the Cal/OSHA board's June 3 meeting, the agency considered an updated set of rules that would have allowed fully vaccinated workers to remove their masks only in rooms in which all workers were also fully vaccinated.

Those rules, which the board unanimously voted to rescind one week ago after backlash from some business groups and consultation with state health officials, would have gone into effect weeks after the state lifted its mask mandate in most situations for fully vaccinated people.

According to state vaccination data, more than 70 percent of adults across the state have received at least one vaccine dose.

More information on the state's new workplace safety rules for vaccinated people can be found here.




  1. What a difference a recall vote makes. The urgency to get things back to normal and for us to forget all the heartless, fruitless, and sometimes quite silly things like ordering us to wear leaky masks.

    Nice to see at least some of the absurdities slowly going away.

  2. The autocrat just declared another emergency due to heat and issued another executive order suspending the usual time for an administrative rule to take effect.

    He suspended the Brown Act (the open meetings law for local government) last year and we’ll never get it back. There’s no more public comment because oops, you have a bad connection or oops, you didn’t press buttons fast enough to raise your hand, too bad. Only insiders can even see who’s in attendance.

    We’re now a state of rock-star “men”, not laws, just like China.

  3. When can unvaxed take off the masks? How low do the infections rates and hospitalizations have to go? What are the criteria? If an individual already had Covid, there is no reason to take ever take the vaccine, others can’t take it due to other medical conditions or religious practices. Are they to wear masks forever?

  4. Yes, but sadly your employer needs you to confirm your vaccination status prior to taking off the mask. The most absurd part about that is they are uncomfortably asking workers for their vaccine status, and health information on a voluntary basis – so it’s an unnecessary and intrusive step, and I for one have no interest in my employer asking me about my health records and information.

    The government creates so many unnecessary barriers that make everyone’s life more difficult, and it’s just so unnecessary, and that is why CA is so far behind almost every other state in reopening.

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