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Santa Barbara- S County

Protective face mask use increasing, not a requirement yet

SBSO fitting protective masks
Scott Sheahen / KEYT

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- The use of protective face masks during the COVID-19 health emergency is increasing. As of Thursday, Santa Barbara Public Health officials have not made wearing masks a requirement for those who go outside. But much of the public and public safety departments are shifting in that direction.

Santa Barbara Mayor Cathy Murillo said wearing protective face masks is, "Strongly encouraged by County Public Health and the Mayor. Our city council follows guidance put out by our county public health officials."

Thursday the Santa Barbara Sheriff's Office fitted and tested deputies' and staff's masks. Sgt. Chris Gotschall said the SBSO is encouraging their staff to wear masks when on calls as well as in the office when six feet of social distancing is not possible.

Gelson's staff on upper State Street said on Friday their grocery store will start requiring everyone, employees and shoppers, to wear a mask in order to enter the store.

Coronavirus / Health

Scott Sheahen

Scott Sheahen is a reporter at KEYT | KCOY | KKFX.