WAKEFIELD – In a joint meeting held Monday, August 30th, 2021, Wakefield’s Board of Health and Town Council voted to require that masks be worn by staff and visitors of Wakefield’s municipal buildings. These properties include the Albion Cultural Exchange, Americal Civic Center, Beebe Library, Greenwood Fire Station, McCarthy Senior Center, Public Safety Building, Public Works Garage, and Town Hall.
Interim Health director Elaine Silva advised the Boards that local COVID-19 cases have started to increase, and that using strategies like masking, keeping distance, avoiding crowds, and vaccination can lead to control of the Delta variant. The State’s weekly vaccination report, released August 26, indicates that 68 percent of Wakefield’s eligible residents (12 years and older) are fully vaccinated and 73 percent have at least one dose. She noted that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises wearing a mask indoors in public if one is in an area of substantial or high transmission. Middlesex County, as of the August 28th, 2021, reporting period, is classified as having a high-risk level of community transmission. An indoor mask mandate in municipal buildings will increase the protection of Town staff and guests of the facilities.
The mandate becomes effective September 2, 2021. Disposable masks will be available in each location for those that need one. Residents who wish to conduct Town business virtually can visit www.wakefield.ma.us. Via the “Online Payment” menu, residents can make excise tax payments, property and real estate tax payments, refuse bags purchases, white goods CRT/TV sticker purchases, yard-waste permit purchases, and more. A secure drop box is located to the left of the entrance of Town Hall and can be used for payments, form submissions, and employee communications. The Beebe Library also offers a tremendous array of online and digital content. View more at https://www.wakefieldlibrary.org/online-resources.
Following is the Board of Health regulation:
Effective September 2, 2021, and until further order of the Board, all persons over the age of 3 years are required to wear a mask or other face covering that covers their mouth and nose at all times while indoors in any building owned or controlled by the Town of Wakefield, including the School Department of the Town. This order applies to all persons, including Town and School Department employees, students and members of the public, without regard to an individual’s COVID-19 vaccination status, but shall not apply to persons who have a disability that prevents them from wearing a face mask or covering or who depend on supplemental oxygen to breathe, nor to any employee occupying a private office by himself. Violators shall be required to leave the building immediately on penalty of trespass.