Metro councilmember urges health director to issue indoor mask mandate

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – On Tuesday night, Councilwoman Joy Styles attempted to push forward late-filed legislation pleading the Metro Public Health Department Chief Medical Director to issue an indoor mask mandate.

“I feel like politics are taking front stage to public safety,” Styles said. “Right now, we are duplicating the same negligent behavior we demonstrated last year in hesitating to close the city down, in hesitating to institute mask mandates.”

But since the bill and resolution Styles filed were both submitted late, rules objections prevented them from being heard by council until the next meeting. Styles will need to re-file both so they can be heard on September 7.

“We’re already repeating history. The question is will we step in this time, did we learn something last year, to mitigate the situation?” Styles said.

Styles acknowledges that people are divided on whether the measure is necessary to protect people from the Delta variant. But she believes it will keep vulnerable populations, vaccinated or not, from being affected further from COVID-19.

“It should not be about waiting for people to die to justify enforcement,” Styles said.

Right now, masks are being mandated in Metro government buildings and in MNPS facilities. There is no word yet on if Chief Dr. Gill Wright will reinstate a mask mandate for indoor spaces.

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