(Watch the video above for more information on Ohio’s coronavirus vaccine rollout.)
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP/WJW) — A spokesman says Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has no immediate plans to lift the statewide mask mandate despite recent decisions to do so in Texas and other states. The governor put the current mask order in place in July.
Dan Tierney is the Republican governor’s press secretary. He said Wednesday that even people who have been vaccinated could still transmit a weakened form of the coronavirus to someone at risk of a serious case of COVID-19.
Tierney said Ohioans still need to wear masks and socially distance until the state reaches a critical mass of people who have received the vaccine.
Meanwhile, Republican Josh Mandel, who is making a run for the U.S. Senate in Ohio, is calling on DeWine to immediately remove the statewide mask mandate.
He also asked the governor to remove all restrictions on businesses, as well as require that all schools reopen for in-person learning.
Mandel released the following statement on Twitter Wednesday:
“Ohioans have suffered for almost a year due to misinformation from Amy Acton, Anthony Fauci and Mike DeWine, who thought they were better equipped to make decisions than moms and dads, small business owners and faith leaders. Today we demand that Governor DeWine remove all restrictions on Ohioans and allow our families and communities to make decisions without the heavy hand of government crippling their liberties any longer.”
DeWine also announced new coronavirus-related health orders Tuesday. While the state has not softened its stance on mask-wearing, sporting events and gatherings will soon look different.