Nurses union urges adoption of statewide mask mandate
From the Minneapolis Labor Review, July 24, 2020
By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor
SAINT PAUL — To combat the spread of COVID-19, the Minnesota Nurses Association announced its support July 2 for a statewide policy to mandate people to wear masks and face coverings.
“The Minnesota Nurses Association firmly supports policies of mandatory masks and face coverings as a necessary measure to protect the public and stave off a resurgence of the vicious COVID-19 virus that has ravaged this state,” a MNA statement read.
“The Board of Directors voted to support this policy and urge lawmakers at every level to enact mandatory mask orders and ordinances statewide.”
ABC news reported July 17 that 28 states had enacted mask mandates.
As of July 19, Governor Tim Walz was reported to be considering implementing a statewide mask mandate in Minnesota.
[Update: Walz announced Emergency Executive Order 20-81 July 22 to mandate that Minnesotans must wear masks “ in indoor businesses and indoor public settings.” The order continued: “Workers must also wear face coverings outdoors when it is not possible to maintain social distancing. When leaving home, Minnesotans are strongly encouraged to have a face covering with them at all times to be prepared to comply with the requirements of this Executive Order.”]
“We are not defenseless against COVID-19,” said Dr. Robert R. Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control. “Cloth face coverings are one of the most powerful weapons we have to slow and stop the spread of the virus — particularly when used universally within a community setting. All Americans have a responsibility to protect themselves, their families, and their communities.”
As of July 19, the CDC website reported 139,659 deaths in the U.S. due to COVID-19.