How the Governor’s new mask mandate is affecting East Texas businesses, customers

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TYLER, Texas, (KETK) – Gov. Greg Abbott issued an Executive Order this past Thursday, mandating that everyone wear masks while in public. Now that the Fourth of July holiday weekend is over, some business owners are making sure they keep masks for themselves and their customers.

“We make it mandatory that you come in with a mask. You have the option, we have some masks up front that we sell, we have some behind the desk. With all the children and moms running around it’s safer for everybody to wear a mask for their protection,” said Peek-A-Boutique owner, Julie Wood.

While businesses have the right to mandate masks or not, local officials say they are left in a bind when it comes to enforcing the order.

“Our hands here on the local level really are tied from an enforcement standpoint. Except to just give education and that’s really what we’re focused on,” said Nathaniel Moran, Smith County Judge.

Despite signs that some businesses are posting which require a mask, some East Texans are at odds with the new order.

“I’m kinda neither here nor there. I kinda just do what I’ve been told, at the same time I don’t like that the government is getting so involved with things like that. I understand why, but I still don’t like it,” says Shannon Anderson.

“It’s a temporary thing, it’s not going to be forever if it protects others. It’s not necessarily for you, its to protect others,” said Rachel McClanahan.

Whether you’re for it or against it, Gov. Abbott encourages masks to be worn until it is safe to go out in public without one.

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