Mass Gatherings FAQs

Mass Gatherings FAQs
Posted on 03/12/2020
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Mass gatherings public health order
The public health order issued Thursday by Department of Health Secretary Kathy Kunkeltemporarily prohibits mass gatherings to limit the spread of COVID 19 disease. Here is more information about that order:

Q: Why are mass gatherings a concern?
A: The Centers for Disease Control says the virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person when an infected person coughs or sneezes, producing respiratory droplets that can reach others who are within about 6 feet. Canceling or postponing large gatherings is a prudent public health measure to prevent spread of the virus.

Q: What is a mass gathering?
A: The order defines a mass gathering as any public or private gathering of 100 or more individuals in a single room or connected space where they would be in close proximity to one another. Examples include sporting events, concerts and conferences.

Q: What does that include?

A: That includes auditoriums, stadiums, arenas, large conference rooms or convention centers, meeting halls and theaters.

Q: Are there exemptions?

A: Yes. Exemptions from the order include shelters, retail and grocery stores, typical office environments, businesses, courthouses, restaurants and bars, correctional and detention facilities, all educational institutions, hospitals and other health care facilities and places of worship – as long as they are operating under normal business hours.

Q: Does this affect funerals and weddings?

A: Weddings and funerals are exempt. Individuals should determine for themselves

Q: Have other states done this in response to COVID-19?

A: Yes. As of March 12, Washington, Oregon and California all have similar measures.

Q: What if I’m unsure if an event falls under the order?
A: Start by reading the order, which is available here . If it’s still unclear, err on the side of caution.

Q: How long will this last?
A: The order is in effect for 29 days – through April 9. However, it could be extended based on need.

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