We are trying to walk a fine line in order to open up the workplace and still keep our citizens safe. My thoughts on lifting the Mask Order is that while the Commissioners were unanimous on the issue, I want to encourage everyone I can to go to voluntary masking. We have reached a point where our numbers are doing much better and we can see a light at the end of the tunnel. But to get there, we still need to continue to be cautious and wear masks at every opportunity to be safe.
Of course our at–risk citizens should be very careful, but I encourage all citizens to be responsible and continue to wear a mask, not only to protect yourself, but our fellow citizens and friends. It is the courteous and generous thing to do.
I also want to remind all government entities and business and private property holders that you can control the policy on your own property. Requiring masks is the safe and thoughtful thing to do. I highly recommend that during this time of transition you continue to require masks of your own employees to protect them and your clients. I also recommend that you require your clients to have masks on to enter. At the very minimum, please post signs that you recommend masks and make them available upon entry. The Governor’s rules on social distancing (6 feet) have not changed nor has the need to hand sanitize. Social distancing requirements still have the force of law from the Governor’s order. With the bars reopening under the Governor’s rules and the Governor’s expanded occupancy rules, I think this is critical.
I feel like a rubber ball sometimes, caught between the need for safety and yet the need to get our economy moving. I believe that if the few bars that will open will follow the rules, they will be fine. Most of all, I am hopeful they will employ personnel because those folks really need their jobs back. Yet I will implore the TABC to check closely on these bars to make sure they are following the guidelines.
I believe that if we will act like responsible, caring people and work together, we can succeed. Help me do this?
Thanks for listening. Let’s keep Atascosa County moving forward!
BOB HURLEY is the Atascosa County Judge. You may email him at countyjudge@ atascosacounty.texas.gov.