The Journal Gazette
Thursday, July 02, 2020 12:40 pm

Indianapolis officials ordering mandatory face masks

Fort Wayne sticking to voluntary compliance stance

Rosa Salter Rodriguez | The Journal Gazette

If you're thinking of heading to Indianapolis in the near future, prepare to, as Gov. Eric Holcomb puts it, "Mask Up."

Mask Up is the name of the governor's new advertising and social media campaign to encourage Hoosiers to voluntarily wear a mask when in public situations where social distancing isn't feasible.

But Indianapolis -- unlike the Fort Wayne area -- has now made mask-wearing mandatory in indoor public spaces and outdoor spaces where social distancing can't be accomplished. Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett issued the order today and the requirement takes effect July 9.

And the rule has teeth: People who don't comply may be fined. The rule applies to everyone older than age 2.

Three Indiana counties -- Elkhart, Lagrange and St. Joseph -- have enacted similar rules.

Fort Wayne is sticking to its voluntary compliance stance, John Perlich, spokesman for Mayor Tom Henry, said Thursday.

"At this time, the city of Fort Wayne is continuing to follow the state of Indiana's plan that calls for masks being highly recommended but not required," he said in an email.

"We strongly encourage residents to wear a mask, and we have joined the state's effort as we continue to highlight the public health benefits of masks."



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