Orange County Orders Face Masks In Public Spaces Beginning Saturday - WUSF Public Media | Tampa NPR, Local News Coverage

Orange County Orders Face Masks In Public Spaces Beginning Saturday

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings signs and executive order mandating the wearing of face masks in public. Orange County

Every person working, visiting or doing business in Orange County will have to wear a face covering in any public space starting Saturday at midnight.

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings says requiring face masks is in the best interests of all businesses amid a recent state increase in coronavirus cases. 

He says he does not want to experience another shutdown, and doing nothing is not a good option as cases continue to climb. 

Demings says he realizes Gov. Ron DeSantis is committed to reopening Florida, but in order to do that the county needs to reduce its new cases. 

“If the trend continues where we continue to see increased triple-digit numbers, if you will on a day-to-day basis, if we see where we have a significant increase in the numbers of people in our hospitals, those two things will trigger something else,” Demings says. 

Demings says most of the recent positive test results are in people between the ages of 20 and 39, with the average age around 29.

He says that hospitals have not reached their capacity, but they have seen an increase in patients.

“We’re going to have to put an increased emphasis on making certain that that demographic begins to wear a mask in greater numbers, etc.,” he says.

Demings says the county will pass out PPE kits to small businesses next week to make sure their employees have face masks. In order to qualify, businesses must have 40 or fewer workers.

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