What you need to know about Wisconsin’s mask mandate


(WFRV) – On Thursday, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers declared an Emergency Order requiring individuals to wear masks or face coverings when indoors and not in a private residence, with some exceptions. The order goes into effect on Saturday, August 1 at 12:01 a.m., and will last until September 28, unless a new order is enacted.

Here’s what you need to know about this statewide mask mandate (slideshow):

Violators of the order could face a fine of up to $200, but many local law enforcement agencies say they may not enforce it.

According to Gov. Evers’ office, there are multiple examples of times when you may remove your face covering:

  • When you are eating or drinking.
  • When you are communicating with someone who is deaf or hard of hearing and you cannot communicate while wearing a mask.
  • While sleeping (e.g., firefighters sleeping at a fire station).
  • While swimming or being on duty as a lifeguard.
  • When you are giving a religious, political, media, educational, artistic, cultural, musical, or theatrical presentation for an audience, so long as you have at least 6 feet between you and other individuals.
  • When you are working if wearing a face-covering poses a safety risk, as determined by government safety guidelines or regulations.
  • When you need to temporarily remove your face covering to confirm your identity, such as entering a bank, credit union, or other financial institution or when having to show that you match your identification card when buying alcohol.
  • When engaging in activities where federal or state law or regulations prohibit wearing a face covering

If you have a medical condition that prevents you from wearing a face-covering then you are not required to do so, however, the Emergency Order states you do not need documentation to prove it.

Face shields cannot be worn instead of a face covering, according to the order,

“A face shield does not provide the same protections as a face covering. You are free to wear a face shield in addition to a face covering. But a face shield cannot be used in place of a face covering that would otherwise be required by this order.”

If you see someone not wearing a mask or face covering, the order says you should do “nothing.”

“Some people have conditions or circumstances that would make wearing a cloth face covering difficult or dangerous. Just wear your mask and stay six feet away,” the FAQ sheet included in the order reads.

Here’s a look at other frequently asked questions:

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