Throughout his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Mike Parson has stressed his belief that some decisions should be made at the local level. And as the state has reopened, mask mandates have fallen into that category.
“I do not plan to put an order in from the Governor’s Office,” Parson told reporters in early July. “Again, for people that live in those places that want to live under those guidelines, that’s their elected leaders’ decisions.”
As more than 287,000 Missourians having tested positive for coronavirus since March, multiple cities and counties have begun implementing or considering a mask mandate. And even if a municipality doesn’t require masks, many businesses and stores do. Here’s a look at where masks are required.
As of Nov. 25, Adair County has a mask mandate in public indoor and outdoor places. Exceptions are in place for when outdoor social distancing can be maintained or individuals are dining.
Due to an increase in hospitalizations, Boone County’s health director supported a mask mandate which went into effect from Nov. 25 until Dec. 8.
Branson began requiring individuals to wear a mask on July 31. The ordinance was kept in place in mid-October.
Cape Girardeau County
Cape Girardeau County has a mask ordinance in place — but it has stipulations for if the county’s positivity rate drops below a certain number or if a vaccine becomes “widely available to the public.”
An order from Clay County’s health department requires masks to be worn in all indoor public places. It was first enacted on July 14.
Under Columbia’s current public health order, face coverings must be worn at all gatherings and inside restaurants and entertainment venues while not seated.
Just before the Thanksgiving holiday, Franklin County issued a mask mandate for individuals due to “dire public health warnings.”
Jackson County’s health order mandates anyone over the age of 5 must wear a face covering while in a public indoor space or outside when social distancing cannot occur.
Jefferson County’s fask mask ordinance went into effect right after the Thanksgiving holiday. The latest ordinance came a few months after the board rescinded a similar mandate after the county sheriff said he would not enforce it and questions arose about whether the vote was properly handled.
Johnson County’s health order dictates individuals wear a face covering in public indoor places as well as outdoors when social distancing cannot be maintained.
After letting a previous mandate expire, Joplin instituted a new mask mandate in November that is in place until Feb. 28, 2021. The order covers indoor public places and businesses, public transportation, and outside spaces of groups of at least 10 people who are not family when social distancing cannot be maintained.
Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas announced a Safer at Home plan for his city on Nov. 16. Individuals are required to wear masks indoors when more than one person is present and outside whenever social distancing cannot occur.
North Kansas City
Residents and visitors to North Kansas City must wear a mask while inside when more than one person is present and outdoors when social distancing cannot be maintained. The order is in effect until mid-January 2021.
Rolla’s city council approved a mask ordinance that is in effect until February 2021.
With its original order extended, individuals in Springfield who are over the age of 11 must wear a mask in public spaces. The order is in place until January 2021.
In St. Louis County, individuals over the age of 5 must wear a mask while frequenting a business (either indoor or outdoor) or in any public space where people who are not in the same household are congregated. The order mandates students, athletes, and those working out in a gym must wear a mask.
The city of St. Louis also requires face masks to be worn.
This story has been updated.
Kaitlyn Schallhorn is the editor of The Missouri Times. She joined the newspaper in early 2019 after working as a reporter for Fox News in New York City.
Throughout her career, Kaitlyn has covered political campaigns across the U.S., including the 2016 presidential election, and humanitarian aid efforts in Africa and the Middle East.
She is a native of Missouri who studied journalism at Winthrop University in South Carolina. She is also an alumna of the National Journalism Center in Washington, D.C.
Contact Kaitlyn at firstname.lastname@example.org.