St. Pete mayor announces mask mandate for city employees inside common areas


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla (WFLA) — While the delta variant is spreading quickly, causing a rise in COVID cases and hospitalizations, mask mandates are starting to make a comeback.

St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman announced Wednesday on social media that a mask mandate was returning for city employees.

“Given the rise of COVID-19 in our community, our city government is again mandating face masks for all employees inside city facility common areas and within six feet of others. We are continuing to think through all other mitigation efforts,” Kriseman said on Twitter.

The move comes after Hillsborough County started requiring its employees to wear masks inside all county facilities. The mandate went into effect on Monday.

“New guidelines will require face coverings in County facilities at all times regardless of vaccination status. This directive applies both to County employees and visitors to County facilities like libraries, parks, and Frederick B. Karl County Center,” the county’s website says.

At today’s city council meeting, members will get an update on the COVID-19 pandemic and how the City of St. Petersburg plans to address the recent surge in cases.

Hillsborough County leaders received an update yesterday during their commission meeting and learned COVID numbers have dramatically increased over the last four weeks.  

“It’s dangerous when we let community spread stay high because it increases the likelihood we could see other variants emerge,” said Dr. Jason Salemi, Epidemiologist USF Health.

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