Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey extended Alabama’s current Safer At Home state public health order, which includes the statewide mask ordinance, through Friday, Oct. 2.
Ivey said she hadn’t gotten a lot of pushback on the current mask mandate and said the numbers show the order is working.
“We’re making a lot of progress,” she said. “We don’t want to lose any of the ground we’ve made.”
PRAISE FOR TEACHERS AND SCHOOL OFFICIALS
Ivey praised the state’s teachers and administrators for their efforts in getting schools back in session but warned that high school and college athletic events must also follow the mask mandate to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“We should not be deceived that being diligent against COVID-19 during the day ends when the football game begins,” Ivey said, urging masks and social distancing at high school and college sports events.
Dr. Scott Harris, Alabama state health officer, said his office has worked closely with the Alabama High School Athletic Association “to keep everyone safe and healthy as they attend sporting events.”
The mask mandate has been the single most effective change in the state’s approach to preventing the spread of the coronavirus, Harris said, noting that Alabama has seen an overall decline in the average daily number of deaths, the number of hospitalizations and the number of positive COVID-19 tests since the 4th of July. The mask mandate went into effect July 16.
Harris said Alabama has confirmed 120,000 people have contracted COVID-19 since testing began.
“Those are not positive test results but Alabamians with confirmed cases,” Harris said.
Almost 2,000 confirmed and probable deaths are attributed to the disease, Harris said.
In addition to his warnings about sporting events, Harris cautioned about social events in conjunction with the upcoming Labor Day weekend holiday, which he said “has opportunity to cause a lot of spread (of the virus) if people aren’t careful.”
Article reprinted with permission from TAB Media (tabonline.org).