Covidiots don’t comply with mask orders, leaving officials, public frustrated
New bill would strengthen face-covering rules
IT’S THE MOMENT where you’re not quite sure of what to do. Someone is standing in line outside of a restaurant, or walks into an elevator next to you, mask down around their chin, or, in some cases, it’s defiantly not present at all.
Some of these people don’t comply with Gov. Charlie Baker’s mask as a political statement, with the question of whether to mask or not becoming yet another front in the country’s partisan divide. Some dismiss scientific evidence of the face coverings’ proven effectiveness. Others just don’t care.
As Teitell writes, the mask rebellion is an issue at restaurants, where workers come in close contact with customers and owners are hoping to get in as much business in case of a second wave of COVID-19 shutdowns shuttering their doors.
“We again have had a nasty visit from a ‘refuse-to-wear-a-mask’ person,” Judy Herrell, the owner of Herrell’s Ice Cream & Sweet Bakery in Northampton, wrote on Facebook on July 4.
“His partner wore a 1/2 mask below her nose,” the post continued. “She was asked not to eat in the store. He wasn’t served and asked to put on a mask or leave.‘’ A string of swears followed.
The nation’s top retail and restaurant chains are saying enough is enough, and that government needs to step in to enforce a nationwide mask mandate. This comes as states like Texas, Florida, Arizona, and California see rapidly increasing rates of COVID-19.
Massachusetts currently has a low infection rate. But there are concerns that visitors or careless residents will cause that to spike again.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh warned against a second wave Tuesday, saying the US “is in the worst place it’s ever been in dealing with the pandemic.”
“The California governor yesterday had to shut down indoor businesses for the second time,” Walsh said during his coronavirus update. “It’s a tough blow to that state’s economy, but no doubt a necessary and important step. There’s even worse situations we’re seeing coming out of hospitals in Florida and Texas and Arizona and other places in the country, quite honestly.”
Elected officials are seeking to ensure measures are taken to prevent a resurgence of the virus in Massachusetts. A new bill filed by state Reps. Mindy Domb and Jon Santiago, (who is an emergency room physician), would make wearing face masks mandatory for most residents and ratchet up workplace safety standards at businesses.
Domb and Santiago’s bill would also require a two-week quarantine for most people traveling to Massachusetts from coronavirus hotspots, defined as a state with a continuous COVID-19 positivity rate of 5 percent or higher for seven days. Violators would be subject to a civil penalty of up to $1,000, to be enforced by local boards of health.