With the emergence of the more contagious Delta variant in California, which rapidly increased to over 80% of cases in California in the past weeks, the number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are rising again throughout the state. This is especially true amongst those that remain unvaccinated. Despite ongoing outreach and improving COVID-19 vaccine access, as of late July, a significant proportion of Humboldt County residents are not yet fully vaccinated.
It is with all this in mind that universal masking in indoor public settings is now recommended again by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Humboldt County Public Health. Universal masking in public adds an extra precautionary measure for all to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, especially in communities currently seeing the highest transmission rates, such as ours. Changes in recommendations like these are not taken lightly but are necessary to protect the public, stop spread of the disease among the unvaccinated, and keep our institutions fully functioning.
The recent surge in cases in Humboldt County poses a real threat not only to our community, but also to the county’s own ability to provide vital services.
As such, beginning tomorrow, Friday, July 30 the county will be requiring all employees and members of the public to wear a mask while inside county facilities, even those who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19. This is a mandatory requirement, not a recommendation.
While masks can be a big help immediately, getting vaccinated is the real key to getting our community fully reopened safely and back to enjoying all the things we love to do in Humboldt County. We are now in the midst of a pandemic of the unvaccinated.