Shelby Co. Health Dept: Masks now mandatory throughout Shelby County, not just Memphis. – Commercial Appeal

This story has been upgraded with info from the Shelby County Health Department clarifying the age of those required to wear a mask. It has likewise been updated to add info about the developing legal basis for the mask directive..
Masks are now compulsory in all of Shelby County, the county health department said Friday. The health instruction that made masks compulsory worked at 6 p.m. Friday..
The decision from the health department follows a mask required executed in Memphis a week ago. The mandate applies to everybody 2 and over, according to Health Director Alisa Haushalter. At an interview Friday, Haushalter originally stated the required applied to those 12 and younger — a statement she since clarified.
The regulation does not point out any penalties for people violating it..
The statement of a mask mandate throughout Shelby County came the very same day it reported a brand-new record day-over-day increase of cases — 442. Shelby County also struck an all-time high of 282 patients in area health centers..
The seven-day average of new cases in Shelby County reached 314 on Friday, up from 200 cases a day a week earlier and up 398% from May 18 — the day Shelby County went into Phase 2 of its “Back to Business” plan, where it still stays.
At a news conference Friday, Haushalter said the rise in cases is “significantly troubling” which further company regulations could come for bars and restaurants or comparable companies next week..
Progressing legal basis for regulation.
Over the past numerous weeks, the health department had previously stated it did not know if it had the legal authority to enforce a mask mandate and was instead highly suggesting them.
That altered after Nashvilles Metro Board of Health enacted a mask required recently, Haushalter stated.
Nashville, which has a combined city-county government, mandated masks through its board of health and paved the method for Shelby County to follow fit. It clarified what had actually been an “progressing” legal opinion about whether Haushalter and health officer Bruce Randolph could issue such a mandate, Haushalter said.
Later Friday, Gov. Bill Lee provided an executive order providing county mayors in 89 Tennessee counties to provide mask requireds. In revealing the order, the guvs workplace stated six counties with in your area run health departments, which consists of Shelby, currently had authority to require masks..
” The six counties with in your area run health departments consisting of Sullivan, Knox, Hamilton, Davidson, Madison and Shelby counties retain the existing authority to release mask requirements as required,” Lees office said in a declaration accompanying the executive order.
The order itself explains that absolutely nothing in it supersedes the authority of the 6 locally run health departments to require masks..
Haushalter stated the health instruction mandating the masks would mirror the one that the Metro Nashville Board of Health recently implemented. That required says lawbreakers can be cited with a Class C misdemeanor, according to the Tennessean..
However, the text of the instruction makes no reference of any charges for lawbreakers..
Heres when you dont need to wear a mask.
According to the text of the health regulation, masks are required except in the following circumstances:.

Eating at a restaurant or bar;.
in a place of worship;.
within somebodys own motor automobile;.
when working out, unless it is impossible to maintain 6 feet of social distance;.
when using a mask would be considered a “security threat,” which includes operating heavy machinery, work that requires heavy effort or where interaction is essential or someone requires to be able to easily recognize their staff members;.
within any academic institution;.
within ones home;.
when somebody cant clinically tolerate a face-covering;.
and when in a building owned by the state of Tennessee or U.S. government..

Samuel Hardiman covers Memphis city government and politics for The Commercial Appeal. He can be reached at