Spring, Texas – Governor Abbott signed an executive order today prohibiting government entities in the state of Texas from requiring masks to be worn on their properties starting May 21.
According to the executive order “No governmental entity, including a county, city, school district, and public health authority, and no governmental official may require any person to wear a face covering or to mandate that another person wear a face covering” Failure to comply with this executive order will result in a fine of up to $1,000 minus a few exceptions.
Government run or funded hospitals and living facilities may still mandate that masks be worn inside their facilities at their own discretion. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice and other related departments or facilities such as government funded jails may also continue to require the wearing of face coverings as they see fit. Privately funded and run entities may continue to choose their own policy regarding face coverings as well without fear of penalty. Public schools may also continue to enforce a mask mandate but only until June 4, the last day for most students this semester. After June 4, the Texas Education Agency will no longer be able to enforce a mask mandate on its students or staff without penalty.
In a press release justifying this order Governor Abbott stated “The Lone Star State continues to defeat COVID-19 through the use of widely-available vaccines, antibody therapeutic drugs, and safe practices utilized by Texans in our communities,” he then went on to say “Texans, not government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities. We can continue to mitigate COVID-19 while defending Texans’ liberty to choose whether or not they mask up.”
This executive order by Governor Abbott most likely comes in the wake of the winding down CVOID-19 pandemic and the recent recommendation by the Center for Disease Control that vaccinated individuals do not have to wear masks. For more information on the announcement visit https://gov.texas.gov/news/post/governor-abbott-issues-executive-order-prohibiting-government-entities-from-mandating-masks to see the press release and official order