Effective yesterday, all government employees were mandated to wear masks when entering or staying in any government buildings, offices, boards, authorities, and commissions, stated Presidential Directive No. 21-49 in response to the increasing number of positive cases of COVID-19 reported by the Ministry of Health and Human Services.

This means that schools are also mandated to wear masks.  Minister Dale Jenkins of the Ministry of Education said that the schools are prepared with resources to accommodate this mandate.  MOE received a donation from Japan government and build handwashing stations in all the schools and have masks at hand to fulfill the masking mandate.

The mandate covers the government only and does not extend to the private sector.  It encourages wearing masks and exercising health safety and preventive measures but leaves the decision to individuals and the general community.

The mandate will be lifted only when the “local transmission” of COVId-19 has been eliminated for a period of seven (7) consecutive days.  “Local transmission” is defined by the directive as “transmission from one person who has not traveled within the last 5 days to another who has not traveled within the last 5 days.”

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