MANHATTAN (KSNT) – Visitors to city-operated facilities in Manhattan will no longer be required to wear masks with some exceptions.

This announcement came in a press release from Jared Wasinger, Assistant to the City Manager, on Jan. 3 saying that visitors will not be required to mask up except when entering secure staff-only areas. City employees will still be required to wear masks while working inside of indoor city-operated facilities.

City Manager Ron Fehr made the decision to modify the mask policy.

“I made the decision to modify our mask policy primarily based on our ability to reasonably and adequately enforce mask requirement provisions, which can be very stressful and lead to confrontations,” City Manager Ron Fehr said.

Masks are still strongly recommended when visitors are seeking in-person services at City Hall, participating in a City Commission or Advisory Board meeting in the City Commission Room or accessing programs or gyms at the recreation centers, according to Fehr.

“However, if you’re meeting with City staff in any of our private office areas, masks will be required or an alternative engagement provision may be developed,” Fehr said. “Please refer to the signage at our facilities. We echo the recommendations of health officials on the use of medical type masks versus cloth masks. I also encourage community members to get vaccinated if they haven’t already, and also receive a booster if eligible.”  

The press release also states that there is no city-wide mask ordinance at the moment and none are being considered at this time. Signs will be posted at the entrances to each city-operated facility and at the entrances to secure, staff-only areas.

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