Kinston Mayor signs order requiring masks in City of Kinston buildings

North Carolina

KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) – On Tuesday, Kinston Mayor Don Hardy, signed an emergency proclamation to require masks when entering a city building, effective immediately.

Some city facilities include City Hall and parks and recreation departments.

“We’re not trying to tell people what to do, we’re just trying to keep people safe,” Hardy said.

It’s a decision that comes as COVID-19 cases surge.

“The numbers are high,” he added. “We want to do whatever we can to help slow it.”

Hardy said the decision was a group effort with the council and other local entities. The order will go into effect on the same day as a mask requirement for students and staff in Lenoir County Public Schools.

“We all got to do our part and we all have to do it collaboratively,” Hardy said.

With the mandate, the Kinston Parks and Recreation Department is also including new safety protocols, including wearing masks when entering and exiting the facilities and leaving machines open for social distancing.

“We want you to come in and continue to work out and do what you normally would do, but just in a safer manner,” Hardy added.

While the mandate is in place to keep people safe, it’s also to keep community resources available.

“We want to keep our workers,” Hardy said. “We want to be able to respond to environmental services. Our police, fire folks. We want folks to be healthy and be able to respond to what we need to be able to respond to during this trying time.”

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