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Morning Brief: Indoor Mask Requirements, Section 8 Vouchers, And The Snowy Plover

Four young men stand on an escalator going up, with several feet of distance between one another. They all wear face masks.
People wear face coverings as they ride an escalator in Union Station on July 19, 2021.
(Mario Tama
Getty Images North America)
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Feb. 25.

COVID-19 case numbers are returning to pre-omicron surge levels, and in response, L.A. County is easing some mask requirements. Starting today, some businesses and other public spaces will have the option of allowing fully vaccinated people to come indoors without a face covering. 

Local health officials made the announcement on Wednesday, noting that they expect the county to hit the “moderate rate” of transmission (10 to 50 cases per 100,000 people, or a positivity rate between 5% and 8%) by the middle of March, at which point nearly all indoor masking requirements will be lifted for fully vaccinated folks.

In the meantime, officials have outlined some alternative options to get us through the next few weeks, and we’re not going to lie; they’re kind of confusing. Nevertheless…

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The main takeaway is that, if you’re fully vaccinated and show proof of it (a vaccination card, printed or digital), you can unmask indoors in places like bars, restaurants and movie theaters, as long as the venue has decided to adhere to the guidelines laid out by the county. 

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If you’re not vaccinated, you’ll still have to wear a mask regardless of whether the business is allowing vaccinated customers to unmask or not. Additionally, if you’re unvaccinated and the business is allowing vaccinated customers to unmask, you’ll have to show proof of a negative test in order to enter.

Got it? Great.

As far as employees go, businesses have the option of requiring them to stay masked, or allowing them to unmask if they’re vaccinated.

And of course, some indoor spots — like subways, schools, health care facilities and homeless shelters — will have to keep indoor masking requirements in place.

We’ll keep you posted as the requirements continue to change. In the meantime, keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A., and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know Today

Before You Go ... This Week's Outdoor Pick: Snowy Plover Beach Walk 2022

Picture of a small, mostly white bird standing on sand.
Participate in the Annenberg Beach House's guided walk to learn about Snowy Plovers.
(Courtesy of USFWS/Southeast, licensed under CC BY 2.0)
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The Annenberg Community Beach House, in partnership with the Santa Monica and L.A. Audubon societies, presents a guided walk on Sunday, Feb. 27 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. The walk explores the habitat and life cycle of the Snowy Plover, the small white birds who make this stretch of beach in Santa Monica their winter home.

Or, you could: Dance to the music of the '90s, '00s, and '10s. Front a band for punk rock karaoke. Catch screenings of queer cinema pioneers. Attend a few festivals. And don't forget to watch a conversation between Fresh Air's Terry Gross and KPCC's Josie Huang. And more.

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