MADISON – Dane County’s new mask mandate went into effect at 8 a.m. Monday, requiring all over the age of 5 to wear a face-covering indoors in public settings.
However, Madison and Dane County’s public health department asked residents not to call the police if someone is violating the new requirement, as health conditions or disabilities can make the task difficult.
In a tweet, they asked the county not to judge others — and not to call 911.
“You have a role too,” the department said in a Sunday blog post. “Your job is to wear your mask and stay six feet away from others. It’s not to ask someone why they aren’t wearing a mask or to intervene if they aren’t.
“Some people have disabilities or health conditions where wearing a mask is difficult or dangerous, and sometimes their disabilities and health conditions may not always be visible.”
Instead, the public health department will determine the best way to provide education to individuals and businesses that are non-compliant case by case.
The emergency order is one of the first city/town/county mask requirements in the state. It was put in place after Dane County, home to the largest college town in the state, saw a massive spike in COVID-19 cases among individuals in their 20s.
Per the mandate, which is in effect until further notice, face masks are required indoors — except at your home and at restaurants — including in businesses, health care settings, waiting in lines and on public transportation.
Concerns and complaints about businesses, not individuals, can be emailed to email@example.com.
If a business or group of individuals continue to violate the mandate after a warning, a $376 citation can be issued within the city of Madison. Under the county ordinance, the ticket amount is $263.50.
Contact Allison Garfield at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @aligarfield_.