ST. LOUIS – The leaders of the counties of Saint-Louis and Saint-Louis announced on Friday that they would reinstate a mask requirement, in response to the increased spread of the delta variant of the coronavirus.
Masks will be compulsory from Monday in indoor public places and on public transport. The rule will apply to people five years of age and older, including those who are vaccinated.
Masks will be strongly encouraged outdoors, especially in groups, but not mandatory.
“We have lost more than 500 residents of Saint-Louis to COVID-19, and if our region does not work together to protect each other, we could see peaks overwhelm our hospital and public health systems,” Dr Fredrick Echols, the interim health director for the city of St. Louis, said in a statement.
St. Louis Mayor Tishaura O. Jones and St. Louis County Executive Sam Page will hold a press conference on the new requirement Monday morning.
There will be exceptions for people who eat or drink in a restaurant or bar, and for people with disabilities who prevent them from putting on or taking off face coverings.
Missouri reported 2,865 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, pushing the seven-day average to similar levels at the end of January, according to a post-shipment analysis. Missouri has also reported 15 more deaths from the virus.