Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-TX) took even more action against mask mandates on Tuesday, when he signed an executive order prohibiting local governments from implementing mask mandates. Schools are also forbidden from mandating that students wear masks starting on June 4.
"No governmental entity, including a county, city, school district, and public health authority, and no governmental official may require any person to wear a face covering or to mandate that another person wear a face covering," the order reads, adding exceptions for state supported living centers, hospitals, and county and municipal jails.
TX is prohibiting mask mandates by gov’t entities.— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) May 18, 2021
Starting May 21, local govts attempting to impose mask mandates can be fined up to $1K.
We're also prohibiting public schools from mandating masks after June 4.
Texans, not gov’t, should decide their best health practices. pic.twitter.com/M7iN4sLBJV
He emphasized that the choice to “mask up” should be left up to the individual.
"The Lone Star State continues to defeat COVID-19 through the use of widely-available vaccines, antibody therapeutic drugs, and safe practices utilized by Texans in our communities," Abbott said of the order. "Texans, not government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities. We can continue to mitigate COVID-19 while defending Texans' liberty to choose whether or not they mask up."
Abbott recently boasted that Texas' COVID numbers are some of the lowest nationwide, compared to other states that stayed locked down.
Today Texas reported:— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) May 18, 2021
* A new 13 month low in the number of Covid positive cases
* A new all-time low for the 7-day Covid positivity rate--now showing 3.74%
* A new 11 month low in Covid hospitalizations.
Great job, Texans!