By Alyssa Schnugg
Oxford Mayor Robyn Tannehill says data provides proof that requiring face coverings helps to slow down the spread of COVID-19.
On Tuesday, during the regular Oxford Board of Aldermen meeting, Tannehill read information from a recent news article that showed the percentage growth of COVID-19 in Mississippi counties according to the Mississippi State Department of Health.
From June 29 through July 5, Oxford’s number of reported positive cases rose 19.1 percent.
Surrounding counties with no face covering requirement had higher COVID-10 case growth percentages and include: Grenada, 38 percent; Panola, 43.1 percent; Pontotoc, 43.8 percent; and Union, 26.5 percent.
“Jones County, that was one of the highest case numbers early in the pandemic and the Governor required them to implement face coverings on June 16 is now down to 9.2 percent growth,” Tannehill said.
Several surrounding areas have recently adopted face-covering requirements including Holly Springs, Tupelo and Grenada.
The City of Jackson adopted face coverings on July 2.
“I think it’s important to see the difference,” Tannehill said. “We’ve heard from people who say ‘I’m not shopping in Oxford because you make us wear face coverings so I’m going to these other counties.’ Well, please feel free to do that but wash your hands after a lot because you’re liable to get it. I’ve head from the same number of people from surrounding counties who say, ‘I’ve been coming to your Walmart instead of shopping at ours or coming to your Home Deport because the Lowe’s in Batesville, no one has on a mask.'”