Reaction mixed to West Virginia mask mandate

Published: Jul. 6, 2020 at 11:11 PM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Masks will be required in indoor public spaces in West Virginia starting at 12 a.m. Tuesday.

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice announced the executive order Monday mandating face coverings, as a response to the state seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases.

Justice did say at this point there’s no plan for how to enforce the new guideline and no consequences for people who ignore it.

“Right now, let’s hope what we’re going to do is everything on an honor system, and everybody participate, and everybody be willing to try to look after themselves and their neighbors and everything, but we’ll get to that if we have to.”

After Justice’s announcement, the Quicksilver Arcade Bar in Huntington made a Facebook post saying “Please stop messaging us asking obscure hypothetical questions regarding personal conditions, how to wear a mask while eating or drinking, and overall politicizing the act of mask wearing. Masks work. You aren’t wearing it for yourself, but for your friends, family, and neighbors.”

Huntington resident Alyssa Cline says she doubts many will adhere to the guideline.

"I completely understand it, but I don't think it's really going to go well," Cline said. "I don't think a lot of people are going to want to go around everywhere with a mask on."

A Roosters manager says customers will be asked to wear masks when they come into the restaurant but can take them off at their table.

“I know a lot of people think it’s taking away their personal rights and things like that,” Aisha Conway said. “It makes me feel more comfortable if other people have to wear them.”

A manager at Marquee Cinemas, which is currently showing mostly older films since no new releases are available, says they are waiting to hear from corporate on how the new guideline would affect them. She said they may start selling masks to customers.

Justice says the new mask requirement does not apply to anyone who has trouble breathing or can’t remove the face covering without help.

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