Covid: Italy updates mask rules in workplace

Italy lifts mask mandate in private sector but companies must provide FFP2 masks.

The Italian government updated its mask rules in the workplace on Thursday 30 June, the day the existing protocols were due to expire, lifting the obligation for private sector workers to wear masks.

Under the measures, in place until 31 October, the government underlines that the use of FFP2 masks remains “an important defence for the protection of workers’ health for the purpose of preventing contagion in work contexts in closed environments shared by several workers or open to the public or where interpersonal distancing of one metre is not possible due to the specific nature of the work activities.”

Companies must ensure the availability of FFP2 masks for all employees, in particular those considered at most risk of infection based on their working environment or if they suffer from poor health.

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Employers must also ensure that shared areas such as canteens, smoking areas and changing rooms are adequately ventilated and sanitised.

The government says the new “streamlined” protocol is “an important simplification of the framework of rules but it is not a free-for-all, given the surge in infections in recent days”, reports Italian news agency ANSA.

The requirement to wear masks in public workplaces was dropped on 16 June however the wearing of FFP2 masks remains mandatory in certain sectors such as transport and health.

For official information about the covid-19 situation in Italy (in English) see the health ministry website.