TAMPA, Fla. – The Florida Democratic Congressional Delegation has sent a letter to Governor Ron DeSantis demanding that he implement a state-wide mask assignment.
The governor has pushed back on a state-wide injunction, but has allowed local governments to implement their own ordinances based on local Coronavirus numbers.
Democrats, led by Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, said in the letter to the governor, “We are sounding the alarm for the governor to end this parade of mistakes and to order all residents to wear masks in public.” The letter goes on to say, “The governor should end his ‘nothing to see here’ approach and put public health before political admission at its base.”
Governor Desantis has argued that Florida rural areas do not see spikes in cases such as urban population centers, so it would be unfair to order a statewide mask because the area is not affected by the virus.
The governor also says that numerous Florida cities and counties that see a spike in positive cases of the Coronavirus have implemented mask regulations that the state will not block.
“We advised from the beginning of May, we advised whether you can wear the mask at a social distance and whether you are face to face with business,” said Governor Ron Desantis. “So that message was very clear and consistent. But in the end, we have to trust people to make good decisions.”
As the political struggle for mask ordinances continues, local authorities in the Tampa Bay Area that have enacted mask laws are handing out free masks to the public.
Here’s the list:
EG Simmons Park, 2401 19th Ave. NW in Ruskin
Upper Tampa Bay Park, 8001 Double Branch Road in Tampa
Lake Park, 17302 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Lutz
Lithia Springs Park, Lithia Springs Road 3932 in Lithia
The sites are open while supplies last:
Thursday June 25 and Friday June 26 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday, June 27 from 9am to 1pm
Monday, June 29 to Thursday, July 2 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Clearwater Main Library100 N. Osceola Ave .; (727) 562-4970
Monday to Thursday: 10 am to 2 pm; 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Friday – Sunday: noon to 2 PM, 3 PM to 5 PM
• Palm Harbor Library2330 Nebraska Ave .; (727) 784-3332
Monday to Thursday: 10am to 8pm
Friday – Saturday: 10 AM – 5 PM
• Lealman Exchange 5157 45th St.N., St. Petersburg; (727) 464-5404
Monday to Friday: 8am – 5pm
Closed on Saturday and Sunday
• Barbara S. Ponce Public Library, 7770 52nd St. N., Pinellas Park; (727) 369-0669
Monday to Thursday from 10am to 1pm; 2 pm to 7 pm
Friday – Saturday: 10 am to 1 pm; 2-5 pm
Sunday: 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM (727) 369-0669
• St. Petersburg free clinic, 863 3rd Ave. N., St. Petersburg, (727) 821-1200
Thursday 8.30 am to 7 pm
Closed Friday to Sunday
Monday Tuesday; 8.30 am to 3 pm
Masks are also available from Friday at these locations:
• Largo Public Library, 120 Central Park Dr., (727) 587-6715
Friday: 10am to 6pm,
Saturday: 10 am-5pm
• Highpoint Neighborhood Family Center, 5812 150th Ave. N., Clearwater (727) 533-0730
Monday – Friday: 9 AM – 5 PM