MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WDHN) — Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth is calling Gov. Kay Ivey’s new mask mandate an overstep in government interference.
In a written statement, Ainsworth criticized the governor and State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris’s move, saying that the mandate “infringes on the property rights of business owners and the ability of individuals to make their own health decisions.”
While he said that wearing masks and following social distancing guidelines are the best way to prevent COVID-19 infection, he also said the mandate is forcing counties with low and moderate infections to comply when they don’t need to.
“Masks should be worn to combat further outbreaks, and while I admire Gov. Ivey’s leadership and her on-going efforts, I also believe a statewide order is the wrong way to go about encouraging their use,” Ainsworth said.
However, Alabama’s Hospital Association is grateful to Ivey and Harris in taking the step to prevent the spread of COVID-19, which has placed a record number of people into the hospital.
“We urge all Alabamians, young and old, to heed the new state directive and wear their masks,” added Dr. Don Williamson, president of the Alabama Hospital Association. “Coupled with social distancing and hand washing, wearing a mask is critical in preventing the virus from worsening.”