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Face masks now required in Tupelo

Updated - Tupelo Mayor Jason Shelton has signed an executive order mandating that all people wear masks when in businesses within the city limits. This comes after coronavirus cases in the city nearly doubled in a single week.

Posted: Jun 27, 2020 12:09 AM
Updated: Jun 29, 2020 9:56 AM

TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- Face masks are now mandatory in the city of Tupelo.

Mayor Jason Shelton signed an executive order on Friday that mandates masks in businesses inside the city limits.

The order went into effect Monday at 6 a.m.

According to the order, the purpose is to encourage voluntary compliance in wearing masks in businesses and indoor public places.

The order requires businesses to post signs requiring masks.

It also asks business owners to ask people to leave if they aren't wearing a face covering.

Shelton said the city’s coronavirus cases nearly doubled in number from about 600 last week to over 1,000 now.

He said it is time to take more action.

“It would be prudent to issue an executive order to mandate the wearing of masks here in the city of Tupelo,” said Shelton.

“Now if he says we have to have it, I’ll wear it because that is what has to be done to get the numbers down, because every day our numbers are going higher and higher and higher, because common sense is not being used,” said citizen Torrie Robertson.

There are some exceptions to the mandate. They include medical conditions, religious reasons and children under the age of twelve.

As with any executive order, there are people who are for it and people who don't exactly see eye to eye with it. Like Nutrishop owner, Adam Richardson.

"First reaction was, I get it. I understand there’s a virus going on, but I think that people should have a chance to choose for themselves what they want to do," Richardson said.

Richardson is especially against turning paying customers away if they come in without a mask on.

"It would be very hard to turn someone away because they’re not wearing a mask," Richardson said. "If it makes them feel safer, for sure wear a mask, but to turn someone away because it’s their choice not to wear a mask? No, I wouldn’t do that."

On the flipside is Reed's. When president and CEO Jack Reed heard about the order his reaction was:

"Delighted, we’ve continued to require for both customers and our staff 100 percent of the time," Reed said. "We have them available at our front door, if someone doesn’t have one we’ve got one for them."

Reed said they haven’t had too many problems with the mask requirements, he recalled maybe two patrons that wouldn’t wear the masks they provided. However, to him, it’s about protecting his staff and his employees. 

"It’s just a matter of mutual respect and say look this is an unusual year, it’s not going to be forever," Reed said. "But until we get the cases to go down, this is just how we have to treat each other. We’re called the 'Hospitality State' this is part of being hospitable to each other and respecting each other."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 331863

Reported Deaths: 7494
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22855279
Hinds22625437
Harrison19462326
Rankin14765286
Jackson14233251
Madison10658227
Lee10398178
Jones8713169
Forrest8164157
Lauderdale7528243
Lowndes6761150
Lamar665988
Lafayette6446124
Washington5497139
Bolivar4907134
Pearl River4889149
Oktibbeha476898
Panola4719112
Marshall4648106
Warren4612125
Pontotoc438873
Monroe4243137
Union424379
Neshoba4179180
Lincoln4088115
Hancock402788
Leflore3562125
Pike3511111
Tate348988
Alcorn343174
Sunflower342293
Adams331987
Yazoo330573
Scott330175
Simpson313690
Copiah311467
Itawamba309580
Coahoma308285
Tippah298368
Prentiss292563
Covington280183
Marion278980
Leake277975
Wayne269942
Grenada265688
George259851
Newton256064
Tishomingo235769
Winston235084
Jasper225748
Attala220373
Chickasaw215960
Stone209137
Holmes194974
Clay191554
Tallahatchie181542
Clarke181480
Calhoun177332
Smith175334
Yalobusha169240
Walthall140448
Lawrence137026
Greene134934
Amite131843
Noxubee131135
Perry130838
Montgomery130644
Carroll124531
Webster116732
Jefferson Davis112934
Tunica110827
Benton104425
Claiborne104231
Kemper100329
Humphreys99033
Franklin85923
Quitman83519
Choctaw80919
Wilkinson73232
Jefferson69028
Sharkey51518
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 565510

Reported Deaths: 11468
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson828061584
Mobile44938853
Madison36534532
Tuscaloosa26589465
Shelby26409255
Montgomery25598623
Baldwin23319324
Lee16691179
Calhoun15030332
Morgan14877288
Etowah14563368
Marshall12723235
Houston11302292
Elmore10576217
St. Clair10449251
Limestone10420158
Cullman10198204
Lauderdale9883253
DeKalb9226191
Talladega8705187
Walker7545286
Autauga7388113
Jackson7216117
Blount7147139
Colbert6522142
Coffee5962131
Dale5224117
Russell463942
Chilton4603117
Covington4502125
Franklin439781
Tallapoosa4343156
Escambia414782
Chambers3813124
Dallas3674163
Clarke361562
Marion3354106
Pike323179
Lawrence3176101
Winston289672
Bibb276165
Geneva267383
Marengo257367
Barbour241860
Pickens238862
Butler233571
Hale230578
Fayette223863
Henry203345
Cherokee192347
Randolph192244
Monroe190241
Washington174539
Macon167252
Crenshaw163457
Clay161859
Cleburne158445
Lamar149138
Lowndes143854
Wilcox128431
Bullock125342
Conecuh117730
Coosa115229
Perry109628
Sumter107532
Greene95935
Choctaw63125
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High pressure gradually builds into our area over the next several days. This will gradually dwindle away chances for some showers and thunderstorms. As the chances for rainfall dwindle, chances for greater heat and heat index values will increase.
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