Nicola Zingaretti, governor of the central Lazio region around Rome, makes masks compulsory outdoors from 23rd December. The order lasts until 23rd January 2022.
Zingaretti signed an order on Monday night making the wearing of masks outdoors compulsory over Christmas and into the New Year.
It comes amid a surge of new covid infections in Italy. The Italian government is set to meet on Thursday (23rd December) to discuss possible further measures. All this as a result of the Omicron covid-19 virus variant.
City of Rome and Lazio region to wear masks
Masks were already compulsory outdoors in crowded central areas of Rome. This followed an order by the city’s mayor Roberto Gualtieri earlier this month. However, from 23rd December this rule will apply throughout the city and across the Lazio region.
The new measures are valid for every day until 23 January 2022. They will not apply to children under six, to those with disabilities or to people engaged in physical exercise such as jogging.
Zingaretti described the move as “a precautionary but essential measure for safeguarding our health and that of our loved ones at a time like this.”
Furthermore, the order also includes a requirement for healthcare workers to undergo covid testing every 10 days.
Wearing masks outdoors is compulsory in ‘yellow’ zones. As of Monday the yellow regions are: Alto Adige, Calabria, Fruili-Venezia Giulia, Liguria, Marche, Trentino and Veneto.
The rest of Italy is currently ‘white’ zone, although Lazio (Rome) and Lombardia (Milan) may well be yello zones come the New Year, unless their stats improve.
Italy’s health minister Roberto Speranza said on Sunday there is “an element of concern” within the government over the evolving covid situation. He urged people to “avoid gatherings as much as possible during the Christmas holidays.”
Information on all regions is available on the government’s health website.