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Governors might be lifting mask mandates, but many small businesses agree: this pandemic is far from over.
COVID-19 cases in the US have steadily increased in the last three weeks to over 30 million — still about 22% of the world’s total cases. About 59 million people, or about 18% of the US population, have been fully vaccinated.
We can see the light at the end of the tunnel but we are still in a tunnel.
In Arizona, where cases have risen more than 30% in the past two weeks and only 19% of the population has been fully vaccinated, Governor Doug Ducey issued an executive order on lifting the state’s COVID-19 restrictions. These include lifting the mask mandate in businesses such as bars, gyms, and restaurants.
The new order also prevents local governments from enforcing their own mask mandates, although Gov. Ducey isn’t expected to go against cities and counties that ignore him. In fact, some have already kept the mandate in place under statutes that allow them to regulate public health, according to the local paper in Tuscon.
Conflicting state and local government rules have left some people confused. Rocco DiGrazia, 51, who founded pizzeria Rocco’s Little Chicago in Tuscon, said Gov. Ducey was premature in lifting the mask mandate. He requires all customers and employees to wear a mask.
Speaking to Insider, DiGrazia maps out how this past year has been for his business, the politicization of masks and vaccines, and how he plans to handle customers and employees that challenge company policy.
DiGrazia’s account has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
Our county has not dropped the mass mandate, despite what the governor says
Pima County is using a different loophole in the law to try to enforce the mask mandate. Now, of course, there are some people who are pushing back against that, but if the county health department tells me to do something — I’m not going to push back against that.
Everyone is following the rules, especially the people within city limits. Outside of city limits, it’s a little bit more loosey-goosey. But it’s a political issue, just like it is in the rest of the country.
I thought Gov. Ducey was being clearly premature in lifting the mandate. I mean, for some reason they leaped over essential workers to 55 and older for vaccines. So all the people who were working on the …read more
Source:: Business Insider