Gov. Tim Walz is urged to require Minnesotans to wear masks in COVID-19 fight
July 2, 2020
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz is being urged to require residents of the state to wear masks when out in public, as COVID-19 cases hit record highs nationally and health officials worry infections may regain dangerous momentum here.
Governors in states with rising COVID-19 numbers, including California, Kansas and Pennsylvania, have mandated mask use statewide in recent weeks, saying it's a simple and effective step to slow the spread of a virus that has killed more than 127,000 Americans, including 1,445 in Minnesota. Even President Donald Trump, who has resisted wearing a mask in public, said Wednesday he's "all for" wearing masks, adding that people should wear them "if they feel good about it."
Walz's potential step comes amid growing evidence for how masks can work in concert with other safety protocols health officials are pleading with people to adopt - if masks are worn properly and made with the right materials. Physician groups in Minnesota and the state Health Department are now fully backing a mandate.