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Face Coverings Required FAQ

Keene COVID-19 Face Coverings Ordinance

The Keene City Council passed Ordinance O-2020-09-A (click link to read in full) on August 6, 2020, requiring the wearing of face coverings in certain circumstances.  A list of commonly asked questions and their answers is included below and may be updated periodically.  Please read the full ordinance to get a complete understanding of all of the requirements. Also, please refer to the State of NH Reopening Guidelines which apply to all businesses, organizations, and individual business operators for the operation of their business.

Thank you for helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and for helping to keep Keene open for business.

  1. If I’m just walking down the sidewalk, am I required to wear a mask?  Masks are required in outdoor places where business is being conducted.  If you are in an outdoor space that is not being used for business purposes, masks are not required specifically by this ordinance - however, in such a situation, masks continue to be recommended if a minimum of 6 feet of distance from others cannot be maintained.
  2. Is this just in downtown Keene? No – the ordinance applies to all of Keene.
  3. Do my children have to wear masks? Only children age 10 and up are included in this ordinance, however, it may be advisable for children over the age of 2 to wear appropriate face coverings subject to parental guidance and CDC guidelines.
  4. What if we can social distance 6 feet or more?  Do we still have to wear masks?  Yes, when interacting with the public at a place of business.  If you are at a business in a common area that is not open to the public, face coverings are required when social distancing of at least 6 feet cannot be maintained.
  5. What about outdoor seating at restaurants?  Restaurant customers are not required to wear masks when seated at a table, indoors or outdoors.
  6. How is this different from the Keene Safe pledge?  Businesses that take the Keene Safe pledge ( agree to more than enforcing the wearing of masks.  The pledge also includes social distancing, hand sanitizer, cleaning and disinfection, and on-site working requirements consistent with State of NH reopening guidelines.
  7. Who do I contact if I have a question about the requirement to wear masks? Email  Emails will be processed on business weekdays during business hours.
  8. What if someone refuses to wear a mask at my business and refuses to leave after being denied service? Call the Keene Police Department: (603) 357-9813.
  9. When does this requirement expire? The ordinance expires when the NH COVID-19 State of Emergency is terminated by the Governor of the State of NH.

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