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CalGreen Calls for Greater Transit Agency and Interregional Adherence to Face-Covering Mandates

Consistent, strong, and enforced mandates protect the safety of essential workers, low-income and transit-dependent riders, and those serving on the pandemic’s front line.

SACRAMENTO, Calif.–Because of its mission to advance systems thinking and the Triple Bottom Line, the California Green Academy (“CalGreen”) has authored a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom, calling for greater uniformity in face-covering mandates at the interregional level, in addition to, transit agencies abiding by their county’s mandates.

As of this release, and displayed below, there are several major transit systems spanning multiple counties, with face coverings not mandated systemwide, creating inconsistency and confusion for transit riders.  In the Bay Area and Sacramento, face coverings are mandated for use in 3/7 counties on the Capitol Corridor’s route (Alameda, Contra Costa, and Yolo–50% of stations), and 2/3 counties have implemented such mandates on Caltrain’s route (San Mateo and San Francisco–50% of stations). In  Southern California, only 3/6 counties mandate face coverings on the Metrolink system (L.A., Riverside, and San Bernardino–73% of stations), and only 1/4 counties on the Pacific Surfliner’s shared-station route (L.A., 28%).

Further, in Los Angeles County, face coverings are mandated while in public, and when using essential infrastructure–inclusive of all public transit systems, yet L.A. Metro–the regional transportation authority–states transit face coverings as “recommended,” and a “best practice.”

“Amidst a global pandemic not seen in our lifetime, the irregularity of regional mandates and mandates lacking adherence within counties, is detrimental to state and local efforts to fight the pandemic. Through our letter to the Governor, CalGreen is encouraging further adherence to county health orders by all respective transit systems, and the regional cohesion of mandates, so that regional approaches are strong, uniform, and easily remembered/understood, by transit riders and all residents,” remarked Greg Justice, CalGreen’s Chief Sustainability Officer (ED).

Besides the Governor’s letter, CalGreen created the California Transit Mask Information webpage on the 20th, allowing viewers to check if their county mandates a face covering in public, and hence, on county transit systems.  Updated daily, please contact the CTMI webpage, via email.

 A PDF of this release can be downloaded here.

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