Effective Thursday, Oct. 28 at 12:01 a.m., Montgomery County has suspended its mandate requiring masks or face coverings indoors in locations accessible to the public. Dr. James Bridgers, acting County health officer announced today that the County achieved seven consecutive days of moderate transmission of COVID-19. The guidelines for suspending the mandate are outlined in the Board of Health regulation 19-975 that was adopted on Aug. 5. If the County’s rate of transmission increases to substantial transmission, the indoor mask mandate will be reinstated.
Despite the mandate being lifted, businesses and other organizations can continue to require customers or visitors to wear a mask in their establishments. The County is strongly recommending that all staff and visitors in County Government offices and facilities continue to wear a mask/face covering in publicly accessible areas. The lifting of the indoor mandate from the Board of Health does not impact mask requirements in Montgomery County Public Schools. The Maryland State Department of Education sets policy for public schools.
“The lifting of our indoor mask mandate is a significant achievement for Montgomery County and its residents,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “We got here because the people and businesses of this County accepted and adhered to the guidance we provided. Even though the mandate has been lifted, I will continue to wear a mask indoors and while in crowded outdoor settings because wearing a mask, as well as being fully vaccinated, are the best ways to reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19.”
The CDC also recommends that individuals who are unvaccinated should continue to wear mask or face covering when indoors or in crowded areas to minimize the potential spread of the virus.