Yesterday, Governor Tony Evers announced a statewide order requiring Wisconsinites to wear masks beginning Saturday, Aug. 1. 

Emergency Order #1 requires Wisconsin residents ages five and older to wear a face covering when they are indoors or in an enclosed space with anyone outside their household or living unit. Face coverings are strongly recommended if you are outdoors and maintaining physical distancing is not possible.

The order also enumerates exceptions to the requirement, listing activities such as when an individual is eating, drinking, or swimming. Individuals with health conditions or disabilities that would preclude the wearing of a face covering safely are also exempt from the requirement. A frequently asked questions (FAQ) document is available here.

Banks should review the details of the executive order and revise their guidelines and guidelines accordingly. Read the full order here. WBA is looking into creating a model policy regarding masks in branches. 

The order comes as Wisconsin officials report a growing number of COVID-19 cases and the state is classified as a “red zone” by federal officials, based on the state having 110 cases per 100,000 residents for the week ending in July 24. The state’s new cases are up 11.3% from the previous week but remain lower than the nationwide rate. 

The governor’s order brings uniformity to what had been a patchwork of county and local ordinances ranging from strong recommendations to wear masks to orders with civil penalties to no guidelines at all. 

Recently, the American Bankers Association announced its public support for mandatory mask-wearing in branches.

If your bank has not already acquired masks for employees and/or customers, FIPCO has masks and other PPE available for bank staff and customers. Learn more at www.fipco.com/news/masks.