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California health officials announce changes to mask-wearing guidelines

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - California State health officials announced major changes Wednesday to their mask wearing guidelines.

Those changes take effect when the state fully reopens next Tuesday. California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said the state will follow federal mask guidance.

Those fully vaccinated will be allowed to do almost everything they did before the pandemic without wearing a mask like grocery shopping, drinking at a bar, and going to the gym. Unvaccinated people will be required to wear a mask in most indoor settings, and everyone will need to wear a mask – regardless of vaccination status – in hospitals, K-12 schools, and on public transportation.

The announcement comes ahead of a scheduled CAL OSHA meeting.

State workplace regulators were meeting to reconsider controversial mask rules for employees. Last week they voted to allow workers to go maskless only if every employee in a room is fully vaccinated.

That meeting began at 5 p.m.

The board could withdraw those new rules but that could put older, stricter rules back in place.

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