SALT LAKE COUNTY, Utah (ABC4) – Back in August, Salt Lake County Councilmember Aimee Winder Newton voted to override the county’s school mask mandate.
“I’m not going to put the burden of the community healthcare system on the backs of little children who have very low COVID risk. I morally cannot do it,” Winder Newton said in August.
“It’s a numbers game. We’re going to have a certain percentage of people who are going to end up hospitalized and with the sheer number of people with this variant. We have got to do everything we can and use every tool in the toolbox to make sure we are protecting the public, that we are keeping our hospitals available for people who need it,” said Winder Newton.
One of Winder Newton’s posts has over 1,000 likes, but some are accusing her of “flip-flopping.” The council member said she stands by her decision in August and this mandate is different.
“Back then we were talking about what potentially could happen. We were talking about a virus that really had very little impact on children. And when we were looking to just mask our children during their school hours, I felt like that was not the right call. Right now, we’re asking the entire community to just stand with us for a few weeks as we try to make sure that this surge doesn’t overtake our economy in a negative way,” said Winder Newton.
While Winder Newton now supports a mandate, some of the same council members who opposed the last mandate have posted on social media against this new mandate including Dea Theodore, Steve DeBry and Dave Alvord.
Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson signed off of the mandate Friday evening. It is scheduled to go into effect on Saturday at 12:01 a.m. and will continue until 5 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 7.