Daily Beast: North Dakota’s Republican governor issued a statewide mask mandate Saturday as coronavirus cases in his state and around the country surge to new levels.
After months of resisting, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum has ordered a statewide mask mandate to stem a coronavirus surge that is among the worst in the U.S. As of Saturday, there were only 18 free ICU beds in North Dakota hospitals. https://t.co/i2oGyFgCv0
— The Associated Press (@AP) November 14, 2020
Residents will be required to wear a face covering in all public indoor settings and outdoors when social distancing becomes unfeasible, effective Monday.
Option A: wear a mask.
Option B: https://t.co/AEaEaTshnV
— Andy Slavitt @ 🏡🇺🇸 (@ASlavitt) November 11, 2020
Doug Burgum wrote, “Our situation has changed, and we must change with it.” The governor’s order also limits restaurant and bar capacity to 50 percent, event venue capacity to 25 percent, and suspends extracurricular activities at schools.
North Dakota won’t close bars but nurses with testing positive for covid can still work in hospitals and nursing homes because there is such a shortage of healthcare workers. I’m at a loss for words. https://t.co/fSzqkAvREA
— Colleen Farrell, MD (@colleenmfarrell) November 11, 2020
His previous approach had been to leave mask-wearing to individuals: “Masks work and you don’t need a mandate to wear one.” The order comes after a newly elected member of the state legislature died of COVID-19 and Burgum sued to fill the empty seat.
Quite the development tonight in North Dakota:
Gov. Doug Burgum, who has for weeks resisted a mask mandate while case numbers have surged to worst-in-the-nation levels, just issued a mandate at 10 p.m. on a Friday night. Plus dining restrictions + more.https://t.co/7Nvrbr7MsQ pic.twitter.com/rylLmwvGMT
— Mike Baker (@ByMikeBaker) November 14, 2020
North Dakota had the lowest mask-wearing rate in the country in October, according to survey data.
The state also has the highest per capita rate of Covid-19 any state in the county, according to the CDC as of November 6. https://t.co/jjG8VpBh4q
— Vox (@voxdotcom) November 10, 2020