California, LA County align with new CDC guidance on mask-wearing


California will be relaxing its rules on mask-wearing to align with the CDC's latest guidance.

Governor Gavin Newsom calls them "common-sense updates."


They warn while the changes are appropriate and science-based - they can create a false sense of security for people who are not fully vaccinated, and stop wearing their masks in situations where they may become infected.

Masks are still recommended in indoor public places but the CDC now says people can skip facial coverings in some uncrowded outdoor settings.

In a statement, Newsom notes the state has made "incredible progress in controlling the spread of COVID-19" and more than half of eligible Californians have gotten at least one shot but many are still not vaccinated and the threat of variants remains.

"As we learn more, we are going to update the guidance. This is an evolving science," says UCLA epidemiology professor Anne Rimoin. "The guidance is really based on science and moving us in the right direction. The things that we know is that, for example, that the vast majority of transmission is happening indoors rather than outdoors."

Newsom says, "We need to remain vigilant and continue public health prevention measures...but the light at the end of this tunnel has never been brighter."