North Dakota starts mask campaign 5 months into pandemic
FARGO, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota Department of Health officials are starting a campaign to convince residents to wear masks in an effort to reduce spread of the coronavirus.
The initiative was announced Monday at Gov. Doug Burgum’s weekly briefing. Health officials don’t yet have a budget for the initiative and are depending on social media, the health department website and word of mouth. Burgum has not issued a mask mandate, even though he has regularly supported the face coverings.
He says he doesn’t plan on joining 34 states in requiring masks, instead emphasizing individual responsibility and a “light touch” by government.
The state has set several records for active cases in recent days, including Monday’s update showing that 1,116 people are currently infected.