By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Jackson shoppers are now required by law to wear a face covering inside all town businesses.
The Jackson Town Council passed an ordinance on Friday that requires people to wear a face covering in all businesses to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The mask must cover the nose, mouth and surrounding areas of the lower face and can be factory-made or improvised from scarves, ski masks or other household materials.
The ordinance requires everyone in the town of Jackson to wear a face covering when they are inside or waiting to enter any place of business, when they are obtaining healthcare services and when riding on public transportation or for-hire transportation services.
Places of business included in the ordinance are “grocery stores, retail stores, office buildings, restaurants and bars (including outdoor seating for such facilities), hotels and motels (excluding the rented room or suite), gyms and similar facilities.”
The ordinance only applies to outdoor spaces when waiting in a line to enter any place of business.
This ordinance comes days after the council passed a resolution in support of a request by Teton County’s public health officer for the state to issue an order requiring the use of face masks in the county.
As of Sunday, Teton County had seen 108 lab-confirmed cases of the coronavirus, as well as 32 probable cases, since the pandemic began in mid-March. There has been one death related to the virus in the county.
“This ordinance is part of the town supporting our economy and businesses while living with the COVID virus,” Jackson Councilman Arne Jorgensen said.
Exceptions will be made for people who can’t wear a face covering because of a medical or mental health condition, developmental disability, those claiming a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act or those who fall under the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance for not covering one’s face.
People aren’t required to provide documentation proving they can’t medically tolerate wearing a mask, though.
Children under six, people in their own office space, those seated at a table or bar in restaurants and on-duty public safety or emergency responders aren’t required to wear face coverings.
The council unanimously approved the ordinance during its special meeting on Friday “to keep the community and visitors safe, prevent the necessity for stronger measures and prevent our healthcare system from being overwhelmed.”