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Despite the online backlash and a joke made by presenter Seth Rogen about the size of the indoor event, the 2021 Emmy Awards did not violate any COVID safety protocols, the Los Angeles Department of Health says.
LA County’s Health Officer order requires residents — whether vaccinated or unvaccinated — to wear a mask indoors, but “exceptions are made for film, television, and music productions,” the Department of Health said in a press statement, defending the maskless Emmys.
New: LA County Department of Public Health tells me that the mask-less Emmys were not in violation of the county's mask mandate because "exceptions are made for film, television, and music productions” since “additional safety modifications” are made for such events. pic.twitter.com/6S105zYjbJ— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) September 20, 2021
The health department said that “additional safety modifications are made for these controlled interactions.”
“The Emmy Award Show is a television production, and persons appearing on the show are considered performers,” the statement read. “All persons appearing on or in the audience of the Emmy Award Show were fully vaccinated against COVID-19.”
me: why are the emmys in such a small room without masks and no ventilation during a pandemic— lenika 🌱 (@lenikacruz) September 20, 2021
(30 seconds later)
seth rogen: why are we in such a small room without masks and no ventilation during a pandemic
Fox News reports that the department was told that all attendees tested negative for COVID-19 within 48 hours of the event, and production crews were required to be vaccinated or test negative for the virus twice per week.
“The Emmys reached out to Public Health in advance to share their safety protocols, which exceeded the baseline requirements for television and film productions,” the organization continued. “Careful planning before large events is essential to assure that all health and safety requirements are adequately addressed.”
While the health department says there is an exception for the Emmys, everyone else is expected to wear a mask — regardless of vaccination status — in all indoor public settings, venues, gatherings, and public and private businesses in Los Angeles County.
The county’s public health website states: “It is important for everyone to help slow the spread of the virus by wearing masks indoors.”
In a packed area, stars can be seen partying — fully vaccinated, of course.
The CDC’s website states that “since vaccines are not 100% effective at preventing infection, some people who are fully vaccinated will still get COVID-19.
“Full vaccination of all attendees is one of the most powerful ways to achieve a safe environment. Testing of event participants and crew and optimizing ventilation are additional powerful tools,” the Department of Health said. “Public Health will continue to review the protocols of future large television production events and prescribe additional safety modifications to mitigate risk of COVID-19 transmission.”