COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH)– Governor Mike DeWine has issued a mask mandate for all Ohio counties starting Thursday at 6 p.m.

The face covering mandate is for everyone in the state 10 years and older when they are in indoor spaces that are not a private residence and outside when social distancing is not possible.

The following are exempt from the mask mandate:

  • People who have a medical reason, a disability, or are trying to communicate with a person who has a disability
  • People actively exercising or playing sports
  • People speaking at a religious service
  • People actively involved in public safety
  • People actively eating or drinking

“We have to get this virus under control,” DeWine stated. “Wearing a mask is going to make a difference in what our fall looks like.”

The governor made the announcement Wednesday after stating that counties where masks have already been mandated have seen their COVID-19 case growth numbers slow.

Prior to this mandate, only people in Ohio counties that were classified at at level 3 or above on the Ohio Public Health Advisory System were required by the state to wear a mask.