Rising COVID-19 Cases Force Return of Mask Mandate At Whiteman
Everyone on Whiteman Air Force Base must now wear a mask indoors, and outdoors when six feet of social distance cannot be maintained. This applies to military personnel, civilian employees, contractors, family members, and anyone visiting the military base.
Public health officials at Whiteman have observed increases in Missouri's COVID-19 cases, as well as increases in local counties, and updated the policy "to improve installation protective measures against the growing risk of community spread." This is according to a news item on the Whiteman Air Force Base website.
The news item quotes Col. Daniel Diehl, 509th Bomb Wing commander:
Every adjustment to our public health measures is carefully considered and not taken lightly. We take this step with the best interest of our personnel and our mission readiness in mind. All members of our teams are vital to our success and task of providing the nation with persistent strategic deterrence and lethal global strike capability. Everyone’s continued commitment to fighting the spread of COVID-19 is critical.
Whiteman personnel are being asked to continue to follow the base's strict health protocols which include social distancing, and disciplined personal hygiene such as hand washing and frequent disinfection of commonly touched surfaces.
There are a couple of exceptions to the mask rule. While masks are required to be worn in Whiteman pool areas, they are not required while actually swimming. And masks are not required while engaging in cardio exercises in the fitness center. Although, fitness center users are asked to keep their masks on at all other times. Additionally, accompanied minors with a medical condition or special needs that make wearing a mask or face covering hazardous are exempt.