Executive Order 20-37 Face Covering Requirement

Governor Eric J. Holcomb signed Executive Order 20-37 requiring Hoosiers to wear face coverings in most public settings beginning Monday, July 27th 2020 until August 26th 2020.

“As we continue to monitor the data, we’ve seen a concerning change in some of our key health indicators,” Gov. Holcomb said. “Hoosiers have worked hard to help re-open our state, and we want to remain open. By masking up, we can and will save lives and slow the spread of COVID-19.”

During this period, every individual within the State of Indiana shall wear a face covering over the nose & mouth when:       

  1. inside a business, public building or other indoor place open to the public.  Does not extend to private offices, private workspaces or meetings in which six feet of social distancing can be achieved and maintained between people not in the same household; or
  2. in an outdoor public space wherever it is not feasible to maintain six feet of social distancing from another person not in the same household; or
  3. using public transportation or while in a taxi, private car service or ride sharing in a vehicle.

unless an exemption outline below applies or when in a private residence.

The following people are exempt from this directive to wear a face covering but are strongly encouraged to do so if practicable and without undo risk, or alternatively, are strongly encouraged to swear a face shield.

  1. children under age 2 should not wear a face covering because of suffocation risk;
  2. children who are between the ages of 2 – 8 years of age unless required by directive in Ex. Order 20-37;
  3. any person with a medical condition, mental health condition or disability that prevents waring a face covering;
  4. any person who is deaf or hard of hearing or communication with a person who is deaf or hard of hearing, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communications;
  5. any person for who wearing a face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work as determined by local, state or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines;
  6. any person consuming food or drink, or seated in a restaurant or other retail food establishment to eat or drink;
  7. any person exercising or engaging in sports activities and who can maintain 6 feet of social distancing from other people not in their household;
  8. any person swimming in a pool, lake or similar body of water who can maintain 6 feet of social distancing from another person not in the same household;
  9. any person driving alone or with passengers who are part of the same household as the driver;
  10. any person obtaining a service which requires a temporary removal of face covering for security surveillance, screening or a need for specific access to the face – such as visiting a bank, or obtaining a health related or personal care service involving the face, however the removal of the face covering must be temporary and limited only to the extent necessary to obtain the service;
  11. any person, upon request of a law enforcement investigatory stop or investigation or court related proceeding;
  12. any person who is incarcerated;
  13. any person experiencing homelessness;
  14. any person giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience if the person can maintain six feet of social distancing from other people not in the same household;
  15. any person attending or engaged in a religious service as he or she must already maintain six feet of social distancing from another person not in the same household. 

Special Requirements for K-12 Educational Institutions:

  1. Buildings, Facilities and Grounds: All public and private K-12 educational institutions shall require all students in grades 3-12, faculty, vendors, contractors, volunteers and visitors to wear face a face mask or face shield at all times unless exempted by Ex. Order 20-37.
  2. must wear face masks or face shield on school buses or on school sponsored modes of transportation;
  3. exemptions include:

                                                 i.    eating or drinking;

                                                ii.    in faculty workspace if able to socially distance except while preparing food;

                                              iii.    children between 2-8 years of age except while on school buses or school sponsored transportation;

                                               iv.    in classroom setting configured so all students and instructors can maintain 6 feet of social distance at all times, face covering or face shields do not need to be worn during in-person educational instruction;

                                                v.    instructors may remove face mask if classroom is able to support social distancing from students at all times;

                                               vi.    recess;

                                             vii.    strenuous physical activity during extracurricular or co-curricular activities.

The state will approach enforcement of the face covering requirement with an emphasis on education.  Local governments may impose more restrictive guidelines.  Full details of Executive Order 20-37 will be found here: https://www.in.gov/gov/2384.htm