Salt Lake City

Mayor's Office

Erin Mendenhall | (801) 535-7704 | mayor@slcgov.com

Mayor Mendenhall’s Statement on Masks In Salt Lake City Schools

August 20, 2021

Our school board is a locally elected governing body charged with making educational and safety decisions for our district’s children. 

Unfortunately, and despite all the evidence that masks protect children and the adults who care for them, this issue has become politicized to the point that elected bodies across the country, and in the State of Utah, worry about retribution if they take a public stand as an organization.   

I’ve heard personally from a majority of the Board’s members who’ve privately told me they want me to issue this order. While acting without an official position of the board is not my preferred path, hanging in the balance of this decision is the health of our children, our community, and our healthcare workers. 

As Mayor it is my responsibility to do everything I can to keep our City, and our school district, from going down the tragic and dangerous path many others are already on. 

Today I will use my emergency powers to order that masks be worn in K-12 schools in our City. 

I look forward to lifting this requirement when we reach safer levels of transmission and immunity. We will continue to work with health officials and rely on them to help us determine when the order can be lifted.

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