Florida officials urge Gov. DeSantis to issue statewide mask mandate

A growing list of Florida legislators is calling on Governor Ron DeSantis to issue an order requiring face coverings for the entire state.

As it stands now, mask mandates can vary between Florida cities and counties.

In Orange County, every person working, living, visiting, or doing business in the county must wear a mask, but in Brevard, there isn’t a single mask order in effect that covers the whole county.

READ: Senator says it’s ‘irresponsible’ that Florida doesn’t have statewide face mask mandate

State. Rep. Anna Eskamani is one of several Florida lawmakers asking the governor for a statewide mandate.

"You have Floridians who might work in one county but live in another," Eskamani says.

Eskamani joined several other Florida House members in sending a letter to the Governor’s office last month making the request for a statewide order, but say they haven’t received a response.

On Monday, Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikkie Fried added her name to the list of Florida officials who say it’s time for a statewide mandate.

"This is not a red versus blue issue. This is an issue of public health," Fried said in a statement.

READ: Orange County mask mandate may last until there’s a COVID-19 vaccine, likely in spring, health officer says

The Commissioner launched a new consumer awareness campaign called “#BeSMARTFL,” encouraging Floridians to take actions against the spread of COVID-19, like wearing masks and practicing responsible social distancing.

33 states have mask mandates in place.

No Florida county or city’s mask mandate includes an end date, but on Monday, Orange County’s chief health officer warned everyone there should expect to be required to wear a mask until a COVID-19 vaccine is developed.

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