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COVID Surge: Mask Mandate Returns To Bay Area Businesses With No Limits On Capacity

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) - Hopefully you didn't toss out your mask because with spiking COVID-19 case rates, indoor mask mandates are back.

"It's unfortunate that we have to do this at this point in the pandemic, none of us wanted to be here but the virus has changed," said Dr. George Han of Santa Clara County Public Health.

The highly contagious Delta variant is ripping through the Bay Area's unvaccinated community and is causing some breakthrough cases amongst the fully vaccinated.

For many, masks were grudgingly pulled from drawers after Monday's announcement.

"I just think it completely sucks. Everybody's being affected, the businesses are all struggling as it is," said Liza Prieto, visiting from Los Angeles.

"Of course you want to protect our employees, protect our customers and everybody needs to be safe and it's a hard decision. I wish I had an answer and really, I don't know where we are going," said Dario Nicotra, owner of North Beach's Acquolina.

While the masks are back on, there will be no capacity limitation like earlier in the pandemic. The June 15 re-opening remains in place.

"We are bummed like everyone else that we are in this position, but if this can help us from sliding further back to more constraints - then this is what we have to do right now, but hopefully it's going to solve the problem of the continuing spread," said Laurie Thomas, executive director of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association.

They're asking that you wear your mask as you walk in to greet the hostess, walk to your table and every time your server approaches.

Thomas also has another request.

"I speak specifically to this 20 to 35 year age group - go out and get vaccinated. We need everybody to get vaccinated to help slow this spread"


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