HOLBROOK — Chief of Police and Emergency Management Director William J. Smith wishes to inform residents how the department is approaching the governor’s statewide order requiring face masks or cloth face coverings to be worn in public.
The Holbrook Police Department has not issued any fines for noncompliance with the governor’s order since the order went into effect Wednesday, May 6.
Holbrook officers have extra face coverings in department vehicles and will stop to distribute extra masks as needed for community members who are not wearing a mask where it is required, as well as advise those individuals of the importance of wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Per the state order, residents who continue the behavior of not wearing a mask in public as required may then face a civil fine of up to $300 per violation. As per Massachusetts General Laws Ch. 111 s.30, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), local boards of health and authorized agents are empowered to enforce this order, and if necessary, may do so with the assistance of state or municipal police departments. View the full order here.
“We want residents to understand the importance of covering their face in public in order to keep themselves and others safe, which is why our first step is to stop to remind residents who are not wearing masks about the importance of masks, as well as give them a mask if they need one,” Chief Smith said. “We also want residents to understand that though issuing fines is not our first priority, residents who continue to violate the order can be fined, as this is an essential public health mandate.”
Face masks or cloth face coverings must now be worn in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Anyone in public unable to remain socially distant, a minimum of six feet away from others, must wear a face covering. This order applies to both indoor and outdoor spaces.
Those under the age of 2 or with certain health conditions identified by the DPH are exempt from the requirement.
Masks should not be worn by young children under the age of 2, persons with difficulty breathing, or those who are unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Instructions for how to fashion a homemade face covering with no sewing required can be found here.
This order remains in effect until further notice. Further guidance from the DPH is available at mass.gov/coveryourface.