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Ardmore residents disagree on mask mandate

Published: Nov. 12, 2020 at 7:19 PM CST
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ARDMORE, Oklahoma (KXII) - Ardmore’s mask mandate went into effect immediately after the city commission passed it just after noon Thursday, requiring a mask or other face covering to be worn in indoor, public places in Ardmore.

Mayor Douglas Pfau said he and the commissioners have gotten lots of feedback.

“Of all the things we’ve done since I’ve been on city commission, I’ve got more emails than ever on a singular issue,” Pfau said.

Many Ardmoreites disagreed with the mandate; some even created a petition against it on Change.org. That petition was taken down by the website, and Change.org has not yet gotten back to News 12′s requests about why.

Pfau said the mandate is going to be in effect for at least the next few weeks so the city can compare numbers of cases. He said petitions won’t affect when the mandate is lifted.

“We wanna look at the facts for that,” Pfau said.

Oklahoma State Department of Health District Eight Regional Director Mendy Spohn said now is the right time for a mandate.

“We are just now seeing what everyone else across the state has been seeing for several months,” Spohn said.

As of Thursday, there were two hundred and five active cases in Carter County. One hundred and sixty-one of those were in Ardmore.

Spohn said the data shows mask mandates have helped other cities level out their case increases.

It definitely shows a contrast between cities that do have them," Spohn said. “They do see the benefits as compared to those that do not.”

There aren’t consequences for not wearing a mask yet, but if a restaurant asks a patron to wear one and they don’t comply or leave, the patron could face trespassing charges.

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