Guide to Face Coverings

Where to Wear Face Coverings

In the following settings, masks are still required by the governor’s executive order, county government mandate, by federal requirements and guidelines, or by private entities:

  • Students, faculty, staff, and visitors (regardless of vaccination status) in public and private K-12 indoor school settings.
  • Public transit, including the Connector and Fastran.
  • All Fairfax County Government indoor locations.
  • Health care facilities including all clinic settings operated by the Health Department and the Community Services Board.
  • Congregate settings including jails, group homes and shelters.
  • Employees in other workplace settings, including childcare, will continue to follow CDC guidelines.
  • Mask requirements set by private entities, such as grocery stores and restaurants.

Guidance For Individuals

Based on updated guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Fairfax County Health Department recommends that everyone, including individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19, wear a mask in public indoor settings. As the number of COVID-19 cases has continued to increase with the spread of the Delta variant, this recommendation is based on the Fairfax Health District moving from moderate level of COVID-19 transmission to substantial transmission.  

If you are not fully vaccinated:

  • Continue to take preventative measures in more settings, including correctly wearing a mask, maintaining social distance, and choosing safer activities.
  • See how to get a vaccine. COVID-19 vaccine is readily available and free for everyone 12 years and older.

Guidance For Businesses

Although capacity limits, distancing, and other business requirements are fully lifted, businesses and other establishments are encouraged to follow Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and CDC recommendations and best practices for masking, distancing, handwashing, cleaning, symptom screening, ventilation, etc.

Dispose of Masks Properly

Help keep our community clean; throw your disposable masks in the trash instead of on the ground.

photo of mask on the ground

Report Concerns/Violations

Call 1-877-ASK-VDH3 (Virginia Department of Health)

Do NOT call the Fairfax County Health Department or the public safety non-emergency number about compliance with the governor’s executive order for face coverings.  

Masks for children

Although CDC and VDH recommend that all individuals aged 2 years or older wear a mask if not yet fully vaccinated, adults should use their best judgement in putting face masks on children ages 2-4 while inside public areas or when outdoors and within 6 feet of others who do not live with them. Masks should not be worn by children under the age of 2 years. For children aged 2 years or older, find a mask made for children, if possible. 

Masks with Exhalation Valves or Vents

The purpose of masks is to keep respiratory droplets from reaching others to aid with source control. Masks with one-way valves or vents allow exhaled air to be expelled out through holes in the material. This can allow exhaled respiratory droplets to reach others and potentially spread the COVID-19 virus. Therefore, CDC does not recommend using masks if they have an exhalation valve or vent.

Face Covering Tip Sheets

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Fairfax Virtual Assistant