Disneyland & Disney World Will Once Again Require Masks Indoors
The decision to reinstate the mask mandates follows new guidance from the U.C. Centers for Disease and Prevention.
Families vacationing at either Disneyland or Disney World will need to mask up whenever they’re indoors beginning July 30. In light of revised guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Disney announced Wednesday it would be reinstating rules requiring guests wear face masks when indoors regardless of their vaccination status.
Under the newly reinstated policy, all guests 2 years of age and older will, as of July 30, be required to wear a face covering when indoors or when on any enclosed attraction or transportation vehicle, according to alerts on both the Disneyland and Disney World Resort websites. While face coverings will be required of all guests regardless of vaccination status when indoors, they will remain optional for guests in outdoor common areas. Park employees will also be expected to comply with the reinstated policy regardless of their vaccination status.
Disney’s decision to reinstate indoor mask mandates aligns with the latest recommendations to emerge from the CDC. On Tuesday, roughly two months after it had dropped its recommendation that fully vaccinated individuals wear masks indoors, the CDC announced it was once again revising its guidance. Amid a nationwide uptick of Covid-19 cases driven largely by the highly transmissible Delta variant, the CDC urged fully vaccinated individuals to wear face masks when indoors.
“We have new science related to the delta variant that requires us to update the guidance regarding what you can do when you are fully vaccinated,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky told reporters Tuesday. “In areas with substantial and high transmission, CDC recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks in public, indoor settings to help prevent the spread of the delta variant, and protect others.”
According to Walensky, new data revealed the Delta variant “behaved uniquely differently from past strains of the virus” in that it could be transmitted by vaccinated people. “In rare occasions, some vaccinated people infected with the Delta variant after vaccination may be contagious and spread the virus to others,” she said. “This new science is worrisome and unfortunately warrants an update to our recommendations.”
Florida’s Orange County, where Disney World is located, has struggled to curb rising numbers of infections. Recently, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings described the county as being “in crisis” as daily Covid-19 case numbers reached heights not seen since the peak of the pandemic last year. “These numbers are extraordinary,” Demings said at a press conference Monday. “We are seeing nearly 1,000 new cases in Orange County daily. Those are the numbers we saw at the highest peak last year. So a thousand a day is extraordinary. We are now in crisis mode."
Across the country, Covid-19 cases are also on the rise in Southern California, where Disneyland is located. What’s more, hospitalizations due to the virus are up 80.7% compared to two weeks ago, according to data from the Los Angeles Times.
In addition to reinstating an indoor mask mandate, Disneyland has also noted on its website that the state of California strongly recommends all park visitors be fully vaccinated and in possession of a recent negative Covid-19 test prior to entering the theme park.
If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. You can find all of Romper’s parents + coronavirus coverage here.