Wyandotte County residents prepare for mask mandate

Posted at 9:26 PM, Jun 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-27 23:16:19-04

WYANDOTTE COUNTY, Kan. — Wyandotte County, Kansas, residents are preparing for a mask mandate.

On Saturday, county officials issued a health order requiring masks in public places to slow and contain the spread of COVID-19.

Many residents told 41 Action News the new requirement won’t be much of a hassle.

“I’m a big advocate for it," said Faith Rivera, Wyandotte County resident. "I’ve been wearing my mask everywhere."

The new mask requirement would go into effect at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, June 30.

County officials said the move came in response to an increase in cases.

“We put ourselves in that position because we’re not listening to health professionals," Rivera said. "We’re not listening to people. We’re believing that, 'Oh, we don’t know anybody who’s sick.'"

Business owners, like Adrian Jasper, of Elevate Bar & Grill, told 41 Action News the requirements did not come as a surprise.

“We were already planning on having our staff start our masks on Tuesday," Jasper said. "We’re closed on Monday, and it just seemed like perfecting timing when we found out yesterday that both cities were going to go to mandatory masks."

At Elevate Bar & Grill, tables are properly social distanced, employees have masks and to-go services have been established.

“Our guests, we’ll kind of let them go with the flow," Jasper said. "We’ve kind of already got that space, you know, that they should be comfortable with and, you know, we even have a second dining room, if we need to open up and spread out more."

Tuesday, masks will be required indoors and at all outdoor public gathering spaces. People can take them off to eat or drink, but must be socially distanced.

With the new policy, county officials said people with medical conditions can wear a full face shield as an alternative to the face mask.

Business owners like Jasper said the most difficult part about the mandate will be policing it.

“When it comes to cracking down and policing, it’s even tougher with a bar because people are drinking, people are eating," Jasper said. "So, you know, there’s going to be some limitations with policing."