Home Main Category Announcements Don’t Toss Those Masks Away, Yet, Folks…

Don’t Toss Those Masks Away, Yet, Folks…

Photo: File

As of July 14, Contra Costa’s reported new cases are averaging 93 per day and the daily case rate is now 5.7 per 100,000 and rising.

With cases of COVID-19 rising locally and increased circulation of the highly transmissible Delta variant, the Counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Sonoma, and the City of Berkeley recommend that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear masks indoors in public places to ensure easy verification that all unvaccinated people are masked in those settings and as an extra precautionary measure for all. In June, the Delta variants comprised 43 percent of all specimens sequenced in California. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) noted that Delta variants are now responsible for 58 percent of new infections across the country.

Fully vaccinated people are well-protected from infections and serious illness due to known COVID-19 variants including Delta variants, and vaccinating as many people as possible, as soon as possible, continues to be our best defense against severe COVID-19 infection, and the harm it can do to our region. Vaccines are safe, effective, free, and widely available to everyone 12 and older.

Out of an abundance of caution, people are recommended to wear masks indoors in settings like grocery or retail stores, theaters, and family entertainment centers, even if they are fully vaccinated as an added layer of protection for unvaccinated residents.

Businesses are urged to adopt universal masking requirements for customers entering indoor areas of their businesses to provide better protection to their employees and customers. Workplaces must comply with Cal/OSHA requirements and fully vaccinated employees are encouraged to wear masks indoors if their employer has not confirmed the vaccination status of those around them.

“The Delta variant is spreading quickly, and everyone should take action to protect themselves and others against this potentially deadly virus,” said Alameda County Health Officer Dr. Nicholas Moss. For masks to work properly, they need to completely cover your nose and mouth and fit snugly against the sides of your face and around your nose.

Bay Area Health Officers will revisit this recommendation in the coming weeks as they continue to monitor transmission rates, hospitalizations, deaths, and increasing vaccination rates throughout the region. Contra Costa County data can be monitored here.

“The highly infectious Delta variant is now the predominant strain in Contra Costa County,” said Contra Costa County Health Officer Dr. Chris Farnitano. “While vaccines remain our best tool against COVID-19, masking in indoor and crowded outdoor settings will help us curb the spread of this latest wave of infection.”

People are considered fully vaccinated 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. People with only one vaccine dose of Pfizer or Moderna are not fully protected.

Completion of the vaccine series is necessary to provide full protection. 
Visit our website to learn where you can find a vaccination site near you or call 833-829-2626. If you missed your second dose, please find a vaccination clinic near you.


  1. Demanding that vaccinated people don masks to protect the anti vaxxers is akin to imposing a 20 mph speed limit on I-680 to protect the geniuses who won’t buckle up. We have no duty to accommodate others’ maladaptive choices.

    Indeed, doing so thwarts Darwinian selection.

    • The fully vaccinated can still become infected with Covid 19 when in contact with idiots or nihilists, often with no symptoms. Personally, I don’t want to bring that home to an immune-compromised brother or a sassy grandmama.

      • @david – What’s the probability of an mRNA- vaccinated senior citizens getting seriously ill even if infected?

        Once you get examine that data, you will see that mask mandates at this juncture are the quintessential policy solution — which imposes a burden, albeit a minor burden in isolation — in search of a policy problem.

        • You didn’t respond to the issue I raised.
          The Immune-compromised or children under 12 have not chosen to be unprotected and you could bring it home to them or some stranger on BART even if fully vaccinated

      • @David – Myriad infectious pathogens threaten immuno-compromised individuals who cannot safely be inoculated. This was true long before SARS-Cov-2. Such vulnerably is frightening and unfortunate to be sure. We have never previously, however, imposed universal mask mandates on the entire population to protect such a small, vulnerable minority.

        What changed since 2020 such that millions of Americans are willing to accept significant burdens and infringements on personal liberty for SARS-Cov-2 but no other pathogen, especially since the VAST majority of people vulnerable to serious Covid-19 illness may opt for inoculation?

        Children under 12 rarely suffer serious illness from Covid-19. Young children have long been far more prone to serious illness from other pathogens. Children die far more frequently from vehicle accidents, yet we allow people to drive. Imposing burdens and restricting commerce and freedom of association on the basis that young children cannot be vaccinated while allowing the use of motor vehicles confounds logic.

        Separately, the healthcare system does NOT thwart Darwinian selection for those who refuse to use it, as is the case with almost every unvaccinated adult.

        • You reply with more misdirection. I wrote: “Personally, I don’t want to bring that home to an immune-compromised brother or a sassy grandmama.” How do you honestly get “universal mask mandates” out of my comment on personal responsibility vis a vis the people I care about. Mask wearing protects more than anti-vaxxers, which was my original point. That is missing from your post.

          Also, you pretend to know how Covid 19 affects the health of children under 12 as though that is settled science. I suggest you not do that, and you might want to consider that children under 12 do not raise themselves. There are consequences when caretakers fall ill and lose work or worse. If only there were something I could do to reduce the risk of that happening for my family and others. Hmm. I could wear a mask in crowds, I guess. I think my freedom allows me that.

  2. I’m fully vaccinated, and refuse to wear a mask. I had no problem wearing one prior to vaccination, but I got vaccinated for a reason.

  3. Curious why vaccinated people should care about the adult population that is unvaccinated? The unvaccinated made their bet. It’s a disgrace that govt officials are bringing back mask mandates to protect the unvaccinated population. That’s protecting the wrong group of people.

    • Children under 12 are unvaccinated, and not by choice. I care about them. Those who are immune-compromised might also need our collective (voluntary) assistance during a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic. Know anyone like that?

      • Yeah, thanks for repeating yourself. My children are under 12 and wear masks. They, like most kids, do a much better job of following rules than unvaccinated adults. I’ve also read enough of the science to know kids under 12 have a very low probability of a severe C19 reaction. Sounds like your best option is to wear a mask or stay home, limit your people contact, and protect yourself. Good luck. You do you. In the meantime, I will continue to test drive my vaccine and trust the science.

    • I believe it was Dr. Fauci who speculated that Polio would not have been eradicated had the vaccination campaign occurred in a time of mass disinformation and fear mongering such as today. Right now we are confronted with massive disinformation in social media and a breeding pool for Covid 19 variants among the unvaccinated. That is one very real reason to care about the willfully unvaccinated ignoramuses here and the invisible peoples in the poorest reaches of the planet where this virus will continue to spread and mutate and spread and mutate.

  4. Not everyone is a coronaphobe. Take a chill pill. Some people are in excellent health. Unless you have underlying health problems, you have nothing to fear. Relax. The kids that are dying are obese. Focusing on losing the weight is a better option.

    • So, the 600 thousand (and counting) Americans who died from Covid19 were all in poor health? WHAT have you been reading? A viral pandemic is just nature’s way of telling us Americans to lose the extra pounds? Uhhh, no!

      • Here’s what I’m reading:

        “Nearly all Covid-19 patients who have died in the United States (94%) and the vast majority of those admitted to intensive care (78%) had at least one underlying health condition, such as hypertension, diabetes, pulmonary disease or obesity, according to CDC data.”

        I’m not old, I have NO underlying health conditions, and I’ve never been overweight or obese. 99% survival rate, and most cases are mild or moderate.

        So, yes most people who are dying are in poor health. And if you’re obese, your lessen your chances of survival. Most of the people who end up on ventilators are obese men under 60. And every picture I’ve seen of kids under 18 who have died are obese.

        Statistically, you probably have a higher chance of getting hit and killed on the way to somewhere than you do of dying of Covid. Quit fear mongering. Turn OFF the news. It’s fear porn.

Leave a Reply