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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 26, 2020 7:05 PM
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: 517138

Reported Deaths: 10306
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison35086559
DeSoto33512432
Hinds32826644
Jackson24938392
Rankin22621405
Lee16564245
Madison14986283
Jones14195248
Forrest13865260
Lauderdale12343323
Lowndes11401193
Lamar10715140
Pearl River9762244
Lafayette8898143
Hancock7854132
Washington7562169
Oktibbeha7246138
Monroe7106179
Pontotoc7071110
Warren6915179
Panola6815136
Neshoba6762210
Marshall6751142
Bolivar6484151
Union647099
Alcorn5969108
Pike5953157
Lincoln5550136
George511380
Prentiss511086
Tippah498483
Itawamba4916107
Scott479599
Tate4790118
Adams4789125
Leflore4765144
Copiah458995
Simpson4587117
Yazoo458692
Wayne444372
Covington435895
Sunflower4338106
Marion4313112
Coahoma4263111
Leake414491
Newton396482
Tishomingo390294
Grenada3799109
Stone366466
Attala342290
Jasper341667
Chickasaw320867
Winston319092
Clay314378
Clarke302095
Calhoun289550
Holmes273789
Smith271452
Yalobusha246547
Tallahatchie233153
Greene225549
Walthall222266
Lawrence221142
Perry214656
Amite210657
Webster207248
Noxubee188943
Montgomery182857
Carroll176341
Jefferson Davis175043
Tunica164139
Benton153539
Kemper145641
Choctaw138027
Claiborne134939
Humphreys132639
Franklin127130
Quitman107928
Wilkinson106539
Jefferson97334
Sharkey65321
Issaquena1957
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 849409

Reported Deaths: 16199
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1165042004
Mobile744951384
Madison53605739
Shelby38474373
Baldwin38236590
Tuscaloosa36225644
Montgomery34599784
Lee25712264
Calhoun22652520
Morgan22569411
Etowah20084521
Marshall18878318
Houston17806426
St. Clair16987359
Limestone16220222
Cullman16183306
Elmore15967295
Lauderdale15126308
Talladega14275302
DeKalb13099271
Walker12202380
Blount10803193
Autauga10566157
Jackson10237196
Coffee9447192
Colbert9396210
Dale9052192
Tallapoosa7291202
Russell711965
Chilton7101171
Covington6985197
Escambia6972146
Franklin6379108
Chambers5815142
Marion5451132
Dallas5307210
Pike5135109
Clarke485986
Lawrence4857130
Winston4804111
Geneva4658137
Bibb436795
Barbour370880
Butler3446101
Marengo342593
Monroe338666
Randolph338567
Pickens335590
Fayette332785
Henry321566
Cherokee321264
Hale320289
Crenshaw262278
Washington256952
Cleburne255460
Lamar253755
Clay253169
Macon246667
Conecuh193962
Coosa186248
Lowndes178468
Wilcox178338
Bullock152845
Perry141940
Sumter139841
Greene130845
Choctaw94928
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Tupelo
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Columbus
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Temperatures return closer to normal for Wednesday with the shower staying south of us for the middle of the week, but rain chances start returning Thursday and could include thunderstorms, some possibly strong by Friday late in the day.
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