LaGRANGE, Ga. (WRBL) – As the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise everywhere, discussions of masks are beginning to take place once again. Mayor of LaGrange, Jim Thornton, said the low vaccination rates in Troup County concern him however the city council will not be implementing a mask mandate.
“I don’t think there is any interest at the council level in imposing any kind of mask mandate but we are going to do everything we can to encourage people to wear the masks,” said Thornton.
The conversation of reinstating masks mandates is becoming more prevalent around the country. According to WTOC 11, the city of Savannah reinstated a mask mandate on July 26, 2021. The decision came after the evaluation of several factors like the delta variant and the continuation of large gatherings.
Thornton said the council has been monitoring the numbers closely of both the active cases and hospitalizations. He said if the numbers continue rising people can expect to see more public information campaigns, distribution of masks and businesses potentially requiring masks indoors.
He said he believes the number of fully vaccinated individuals in Troup County is unusually low and urges those that are medically-able to get vaccinated.
“I think that’s the takeaway here, is that if you get sick it’s going to be the local physicians who are going to be treating you for the COVID sickness. Those local physicians are all saying if you’re medically eligible to do so please take the vaccine. I think we should listen to the medical providers they are the experts in the field,” said Thornton.
Thornton said his message to the public is to not think COVID is over because numbers are trending in the wrong direction. He encourages people to practice hand hygiene, wearing masks in indoor spaces and practice social distancing.