PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - If it seems like the rules and recommendations for covering our faces have been a moving target, you are correct. Initially, only the sick needed to wear a mask to protect everyone else and now we're all being told to wear a face covering to protect each other.
This latest wave of rule changes in Pennsylvania go into effect Sunday night.
So come Monday, when you walk into a store there should be no face uncovered. (Unless someone can't cover their face due a medical condition.) That include both employees of the store and customers.
Julia Dykes from Beechview says it's about time: "From the very beginning we should have had our masks on, but it's all new, we didn't know."
What has been recommended but voluntary is now going to be mandatory.
Come Monday, if you plan on going anywhere where there are other people, you must wear a mask or face covering like a bandanna.
Kim Longwell lives in Moon Township and says, "It actually protects you as much as the other people. So I don't think it's a bad thing."
While a host of state agencies will be watching to enforce the rules, it's up to individual stores to control store entry.
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Anyone not wearing a mask into a grocery, pharmacy or other essential business will be turned away and directed to return home and get a mask or face covering. However, they are required to be offered an alternate pick up method.
Sounds right, says Jason Lamb of Robinson Township. "To be out with no protection, that's kind of reckless I think. Cause this virus is still not contained and I think you're putting the country at risk if you don't have some kind of protection out there."
The new rules also call on stores to restrict the number of people inside to half those allowed by their occupancy permit. So if you shop at a busy time, you could find yourself outside waiting to go in.
Linda Riemer of Upper St. Clair thinks that might be going a bit too far: "Personally I think that should be up to the private stores."
The order also calls on stores with multiple checkout lines to close every other register to provide more separation. It goes on to say every hour the stores should switch to the closed registers so the others can be disinfected.
Tim Troutman says it's a lot to ask but necessary, "I think it's good that we're protecting ourselves."
Some stores have already implemented some of the requirement, the rest will be catching up before the deadline.
While in New York City, the new masking rules are for everyone stepping outside their homes to be masked, Pennsylvania is not going that far.
If you are in your yard, or driving your car, or exercising alone you do not need to be wearing a face covering.
However, if you go for a walk or run with a friend it's recommended you wear a mask and stay socially distant. The same if you are going to a crowded park.
The new rules in Pennsylvania go into effect on Sunday night at 8 p.m. and multiple state agencies will be enforcing them, including the state police.
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