Can You Insist that Contractors Wear Masks While Working in Your Home?

Since its initial outbreak in late 2019, COVID-19 has upended the daily lives of millions of people across the world. In the new world of social distancing, surface disinfecting, and mask-wearing, it can be hard to know exactly what to expect on the rare occasions where social interaction becomes necessary.

a person wearing a helmet

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What happens, for example, if you need an emergency repair done in your home that’s beyond the expertise of an experienced DIYer? How far are you allowed to go to keep you and your family safe? And what safety measures can you require from the people coming into your home?


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Can You Ask Contractors to Wear a Mask?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you can (and should) ask any service provider entering your home to wear a mask. The best way to make that clear is to wear one yourself

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Kennedy: Ideas for repurposing those COVID-19 masks, from beard bibs to hamster hammocks

If your family is like mine, you probably have a stack of COVID-19 face masks.

We have a basket on a table near our back door that’s overflowing with throwaway paper masks, comfy cloth masks, super-safe KN95 masks.

There are masks with valves, masks made of fleece and masks with pleats. We have masks with filters that are not being used — too complicated. There are masks that anchor around your ears, and others with elastic straps that encircle your head.

At the bottom of our basket, I even found a seersucker mask — which would be perfect on days that I decide to dress like Atticus Finch.

Our mask stockpile is sufficient for the foreseeable future.

Which brings me to today’s topic: How will we repurpose all these masks once the pandemic is over? We shouldn’t just toss them out.

This repurposing occurred to me last Sunday driving home

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Dallas EMS crew sent home after not wearing masks while treating patient with COVID-19

Members of a Dallas Fire-Rescue crew were sent home this week after they did not wear masks while treating a patient who has COVID-19, a spokesman for the department said Friday.

a fire truck parked in front of a bus: Members of a Dallas EMS crew were sent home this week after treating a COVID-19 positive patient while not wearing masks.

© Irwin Thompson/The Dallas Morning News/The Dallas Morning News/TNS
Members of a Dallas EMS crew were sent home this week after treating a COVID-19 positive patient while not wearing masks.

The incident, which was first reported by KDFW-TV (Channel 4), occurred Sunday at Dallas Regional Medical Center in Mesquite.

The department did not say whether anyone sent home had since tested positive for the virus.

It is unclear how many members of the crew were sent home, whether they are quarantined or if they have worked since Sunday. Spokesman Jason Evans said the matter is under investigation, and that appropriate disciplinary actions would be determined.

“Due to HIPAA restrictions, we are unable to confirm or discuss specifics when

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