State of Michigan employees must mask up in their offices

Posted at 8:23 PM, Aug 24, 2021

LANSING, Mich. — State of Michigan employees must wear face masks, regardless of their vaccination status.

The new policy, which went into effect Monday, applies to the 47,000 state employees who work in an office or indoor setting. Kurt Weiss, the public information officer in the State Budget Office explained that the move is an effort to protect state employees as COVID-19 cases rise.

“As the employer of state employees, we have a responsibility to keep the workplace safe," Weiss said. "We manage all the state buildings and several of these facilities where we have state employees. And so we really need to do our best to keep everyone safe. And so the thinking behind the mask policy is this was the best step to take to make sure we ensure everyone's safety.”

The Office of the State Employer told workers in a statement that masks must be worn in all cubicles and common areas but may be removed if an employee is in an enclosed space where no other person from outside their household is present.

"Overall, I think the reaction has been good. I think people understand that we're doing this to try to keep everyone safe," Weiss said.

Officials won't be able to please everyone, he said, “but I think people understand that we have a responsibility to put rules into the workplace, to keep people safe. And that's exactly why we're doing this."

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