Women’s March SLO initiates a campaign to promote wearing a face mask


San Luis Obispo County received the green light to continue through Stage 2 of California’s Resilience Roadmap, effectively allowing businesses to resume dine-in services and in-store shopping. As the local economy begins to reopen, Women’s March SLO County created a campaign to promote the continued use of face coverings in public spaces.

On May 23, the organization initiated the #WearAMaskSLOCounty campaign to educate the community about the impacts of wearing a mask and the goal of protecting the community at large.
TAKING ACTION Women’s March SLO promotes wearing face coverings with the campaign #WearAMaskSLOCounty. - PHOTO COURTESY OF WOMEN’S MARCH SLO
  • TAKING ACTION Women’s March SLO promotes wearing face coverings with the campaign #WearAMaskSLOCounty.

Organization spokesperson Andrea Chmelik said the campaign is about taking action.

“One of the things that can be disconcerting to people is the difference between taking action and being mandated to take action,” Chmelik said. “Women’s March SLO advocates for mask-wearing in situations where social distancing is not possible because we know that, with or without a mandate, being the change we want to see is one of the most important things we can do to help our community stay healthy.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), recent studies show that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (asymptomatic) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms. The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.

SLO County officials haven’t mandated the use of face coverings, however the county offers guidelines about it. Face masks should be worn by health care workers, some first responders, those who are sick, and people who can’t maintain a 6-foot distance. Face coverings should not take the place of staying home except for essential activities, washing your hands, and maintaining safe social-distancing.

“Women’s March SLO has shown that when people speak up, leaders change. That said, we cannot always wait for our leaders. We must be the change,” Chmelik said. “Health is not a partisan issue. We have lost 100,000 Americans to COVID-19 and we are nowhere near the end of this crisis. … We have the power over the outcome here in our county.”

Chmelik said the Women’s March urges the community to share this campaign with respect and kindness.

“As always we look to change behavior, not attack people,” she said. ∆

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