Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) has called for a Florida statewide mask order in response to the skyrocketing cases of COVID-19 in the sunshine state.
Directing a statement to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R), Commissioner Fried argued that “with 31,299 new cases in the past week alone, Florida has emerged as a new hotspot for COVID-19.” She added that “while this pandemic threatens to spiral out of control, our leadership is rushing headlong into further re-opening the state.”
Commenting that “we must take basic protective measures immediately,” Friends called “on the Governor to issue a statewide order requiring masks to be work in public places.”
She said that “this is common sense, violates no one’s liberties, and follows the lead of 18 other states like North Carolina, Kentucky, and New York.”
“If we’re to beat this virus together, we must all act together, with all Floridians doing their part,” she concluded.
The call comes at a time when Florida added 5,508 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, which brings the statewide total to 114,018 overall cases. Currently, the state’s positivity rate is at 15.91%, which is up 2.3% from May 17’s numbers. And, the World Health Organization has signaled that a state should have a positivity rate of under 5% for 14 days if it is to continue reopening.
Fried and Democrats note that this is a concern because Governor DeSantis has moved to the next phase of reopening 64 of the sunshine state’s 67 counties.