In the State of Illinois, face coverings are required to be worn by all individuals when in public places and when not able to maintain adequate social distancing, except for children under age two and when with members of the same household. Face coverings are required in public indoor spaces. This measure is being taken to help limit further spread of COVID-19 in Illinois.
In addition to practicing social distancing, cloth face coverings help slow the spread of COVID-19 and help those who may unknowingly have the virus from transmitting it to others. The most effective measures for preventing further spread of COVID-19, however, remain staying at home when sick, maintaining physical separation between other people while out in public (at least six feet) and frequently washing hands with either soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
Individuals should wear a mask or face covering when they must leave their home, and they either cannot or it is impractical to maintain six feet of physical distance between themselves and others:
- The covering can be a scarf, a bandana or a mask you make at home. Learn from the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Jerome Adams, how to make your own easy cloth face covering here.
- It should have multiple layers of fabric and should be opaque (not show light) when held up to a light source.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth when removing the mask. Make sure to wash your hands immediately after removing it. Clean the mask frequently by using a washing machine.
- Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age two, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Cloth face coverings should:
- fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- be secured with ties or ear loops
- include multiple layers of fabric
- allow for breathing without restriction
- be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape