Rochester leaders looking at city wide mask mandate | KAALTV.com

Rochester leaders looking at city wide mask mandate

Jennie Hinz
Updated: July 02, 2020 07:13 PM
Created: July 02, 2020 07:10 PM

(ABC 6 NEWS) - The conversation on requiring masks in Rochester has continued over the past week. 

"We want to get ahead of this.  We don't want the economy shut down again. We do not want more people infected, so we are having that discussion is it time to just tell people you have to wear a mask in our community if you are going to be in buildings," said Mayor Kim Norton.

Wednesday, Rochester Mayor Norton thanked Mayo Clinic for standing behind the city council if a mask requirement is set for Rochester. 

In a statement to ABC 6 News, Mayo Clinic wrote, "We are proud to partner with organizations in the communities we serve and support efforts to increase the use of facemasks as an effective public health measure." 

Olmsted Public Health is also recommending masks be worn, but said there's not a lot they can do with enforcement. 

"We can see more and more clearly wearing a cloth mask is going to protect the community. Once we provide that information to the elected officials. That conversation changes a little bit into things we don't really have the ability to do, like how do you look at enforcement," Director of Public Health, Graham Briggs said.

As far as enforcement within city buildings Mayor Norton said, "People will come in and we will have signage. They will be asked to wear a mask. They can be refused service if they do not. Hopefully we will have some masks as well. So that you are not just sent home without one. You're given a mask so you can actually come in and do your business because the idea is not to be punitive it is to provide a healthy and safe environment."

Rochester City Council Member, Michael Wojcik shared his thoughts on Facebook writing that the council needs one more vote to have this policy. 

"We are having those discussions and we will continue to have them in the coming week or two. And we want to get ahead of it so we are not in that red area," said Mayor Norton. 


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