El Paso County Officials Announce the Use of Face Coverings is Encouraged but No Longer Required at County Courthouse and Other County Buildings
El Paso County Officials Announce the Use of Face Coverings is Encouraged but No Longer Required at County Courthouse and Other County Buildings

El Paso County Officials Announce the Use of Face Coverings is Encouraged but No Longer Required at County Courthouse and Other County Buildings

Local Administrative Judge Linda Chew and El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego have consulted with the City of El Paso Department of Public Health throughout the pandemic to implement best practices in protecting the health of citizens, staff and officials.

Public Health officials have informed County officials that the risk and severity of COVID-19 has now been minimized through vaccination and exposure. Measures of community level exposure show a significant decline and the Centers for Disease Control recommendations are painting a similar picture.
Judges Chew and Samaniego would like to announce that:
  • The use of a face covering such as a mask or face shield is no longer required in public areas of the courthouse or other county buildings effective Wednesday, March 16th. Individual judges may require masks in their courtrooms and chambers at their discretion, or as set forth in jury trial procedures of the Council of Judges.
  • Use of face coverings is encouraged for persons who:
  • are not fully vaccinated,
  • persons who are at high risk due to a medical condition, or
  • have recently tested positive for COVID-19 or are exposed to someone with COVID-19
  • Anyone who feels more comfortable wearing a mask in the courthouse or other court building is encouraged to do so.
  • Courts are still encouraged to make reasonable efforts to hold proceedings remotely.
“Since the start of the pandemic, we have worked hard to keep a balance between the economy and public health when making decisions during very challenging times,” said County Judge Ricardo Samaniego. “As we continue to see a decline in cases and hospitalizations I ask that our community continues to move forward with the valuable lessons we have learned. El Paso has come so far within the past few years and we need to protect the progress we have made.”
The Council of Judges is considering other changes to the minimum health standards protocols and the pandemic jury trial procedures and will issue new guidance when the review is completed.
The County appreciates the efforts in our community to protect each other from COVID-19 through vaccinations, masks and social distancing. These changes are a testament to the public spirit of our community. Everyone is asked to respect each other’s choices to wear masks and social distance because the risk to some remains. Department of Public Health recommendations will continue to be monitored.
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