Masks in schools, Salt Lake County council set to vote Thursday

Local News

Students wear masks in class during the pandemic, 2021 (Nexstar)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – The Salt Lake County Council is expected to vote Thursday on whether to require students to wear masks in class.

There are nine council members, four of the members have already said on social media they plan to vote against a mask mandate for those under the age of 12.

“We do not support any mandates from the health department,” says Corinne Johnson from Utah Parents United.

Others disagree.

“I do think the mask mandate is a good idea,” explains Republican lawmaker Raymond Ward. “I’m just saying I think it will be hard to tell the consequences one way or the other.”

Representative Ward is also a family practitioner. He supports Salt Lake County‘s public health order to require masks for K through sixth grade students.

“I think it’s a very reasonable thing,” Rep. Ward continues. “I like how Dr. Dunn phrased it, saying look these kids are not able to get vaccines, get to protect themselves, but more important their families that they might transmit it to.”

Utah Parents United supports a parents right to choose whether to mask their kids.

The group gathered 6,000 signatures from parents calling on the council to overturn the health order.

“Masks do impede learning,” Johnson states. “The point of the petition was to share with the county council that their constituents support choice.”

Ultimately it’s up to the council to decide because state law says, the school board does not have a say in the decision.

The special council meeting is Thursday at 2 p.m.

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