By Danielle Chavira

DENVER (CBS4) – A new public health order from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment will require vaccinations at all public, indoor, unseated events of 500 people or more in the Denver metro area. The order applies to Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver and Jefferson counties.

The new protocols will take effect Nov. 19, CDPHE said in a news release on Sunday.

(credit: Getty Images)

“I am grateful for the counties that are coordinating with the state to slow the spread of the virus. Large venues and local governments are part of the solution to ending the pandemic,” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director, CDPHE. “We also need all Coloradans to do their part by getting vaccinated if they haven’t already; getting a booster; and following basic public health precautions like masking, staying home when sick, and handwashing.”

The state says the goal is to prevent superspreader events as state health experts grapple with rising COVID-19 numbers and data. CDPHE says it hopes this order will help lessen the surge and avoid statewide closures or capacity restrictions.

CDPHE offered the following responses from respective counties involved:

Adams County Commissioner Eva Henry: 

“Since the beginning days of the pandemic, we have been doing our part in Adams County to protect our residents from this novel and deadly virus, from hosting one of the biggest testing sites at Water World to opening one of Colorado’s community vaccine locations at Dicks Sporting Goods, our priority has always been the safety of our community and in that effort, today we are proud to support this new action from the Polis Administration because it will help protect our public health by reducing the risk that an indoor event could lead to spread of COVID.”

Arapahoe County Commissioner Nancy Jackson: 

“The strained hospital system is evidence we all need to do our part to help slow the spread of the virus within our community,” Commissioner Nancy Jackson, Chair of the Arapahoe County Board of Commissioners. “Over the past 21 months, we’ve learned how good hygiene practices, the use of face coverings, testing, social distancing and vaccines can help keep our residents healthy. We really need everyone to keep it up and remain vigilant to provide our health care system some relief – especially as we head into the winter season.”

Boulder County Commissioner Claire Levy: 

“While Boulder is leading the way in protecting our community against this deadly virus with high vaccination rates, implementing a vaccine requirement for our workforce, and a mask mandate for indoor public spaces, we know that the delta variant is a formidable foe since it’s many times more contagious than previous strains of COVID and not all our children have had a chance to get the life-saving vaccine. Our communities are all connected, and we are grateful for the Governor and the state taking this common-sense step to slow the spread of COVID.”

Broomfield Mayor Guyleen Castriotta: 

“With close borders and cross-county mobility, the City and County of Broomfield has and will continue to take a regional approach to best protect the health and safety of our community,” said Broomfield Mayor Guyleen Castriotta. “We are grateful to our residents, and neighbors, for their continued resiliency and stepping up together, united to do their part for the greater good throughout this pandemic.”

Jefferson County Commissioner Lesley Dahlkemper:

“Making large indoor gatherings safer and preventing potential superspreader events will help keep JeffCO kids in the classroom and slow the spread of COVID and the delta variant. We applaud this action today from the state and Governor.”

Danielle Chavira