Gov. Andy Beshear

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Beginning Thursday, Kentucky state employees will once again be required to mask up.

In a video message to state employees posted Wednesday afternoon, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said all employees and visitors will be required to wear a mask inside state buildings, regardless of whether they've received a COVID-19 vaccination.

"Yesterday, the CDC put out a series of recommendations based on their finding that even if you're vaccinated, you can spread the Delta variant. And that changes a lot," he said. "It puts our workforce at risk, it puts your health at risk and it puts at risk our ability to provide services that are desperately needed in person to the people of the commonwealth.

"So starting tomorrow, we are going to have to mask up again. It is a requirement that all of our state employees — while indoors around other people at work — wear a mask to protect themselves and those they interact with. We’re also going to require all visitors to state buildings to wear one as well. That is to protect each and every one of you and to make sure we don’t have a cluster outbreak that shuts down different essential services that we provide here in the commonwealth."

Beshear likened the battle against COVID-19 to a war and added that, "we don't get to choose when the end of a war occurs."

"Listen, I didn't want to have to go back to this," he said. "Nobody wants to have to go back to this. But at the same time, we pledged to protect one another, to be there for the people of our commonwealth. And as the CEO for this state, I want to set the right example for other employers out there, to make sure they protect their people."

He said he believes the masking requirement will be temporary.

"Let's come in tomorrow doing the right thing for each other and for this state," he said.

Copyright 2021 by WDRB Media. All rights reserved.