Mandatory Face Masks

The Government has announced face masks will be mandatory for people over the age of 12 when accessing essential services.

From 11.59pm on Wednesday staff and customers must wear masks at essential services, such as supermarkets, pharmacies, dairies and service stations. Masks must also now be worn at bus terminals and in taxis.

Ardern said they're asking people to comply with wearing a mask in the first instance, but police were asked to support enforcement. She added that wearing a mask was “an act of service for people around you.”

University of Otago's senior lecturer Lesley Gray said wearing a mask protects essential workers and reduces the risk of transmission from the virus.

The first case was a 58-year-old man from Devonport who tested positive for the virus on Tuesday. It was confirmed he had the Delta variant. Genome sequencing showed his infection is linked to the outbreak in NSW, Australia, but no link had been established to the border or MIQ yet.