Gov. Lee limits some indoor gatherings, urges mask wearing

Governor Bill Lee on Sunday, December 20, issued an executive order limiting some indoor gatherings to ten people or less and urged mask wearing for the next 30-days as Tennessee becomes “ground zero” for COVID-19 spread. 

“We are in a global pandemic that’s been crippling our country for months and now Tennessee is ground zero for a surge in sickness,” Gov. Lee said in a statewide address on Sunday. “I am speaking with you tonight because I want to be clear with where we are and what we need to do together to get through this. We now have around 10,000 Tennesseans getting sick every day. Thousands of our neighbors are in the hospital tonight. More than 100 people are dying each day.”

Governor Lee did not issue a mask mandate, though he said he believed “masks work” and urged “every Tennessean to wear one.” 

Lee’s new executive order states or urges the following, set to expire at midnight on January 20, 2021:

  • Tennesseans should work from home where possible, remotely or via telework from home
  • Social distancing and social gatherings:
  • Social distancing remains imperative: Measures should be taken to distance at least six feet from persons outside their household to the greatest extent possible. 
  • Social gathering limitations: all Tennesseans should maintain social distancing and shall not in any event be in a group of ten or more persons in an indoor public space. Places of worship, weddings, and funerals are exempt, but strongly encouraged to follow social distancing or hold virtual events. 
  • Spectator sports and athletic activities: local education agencies and schools should follow guidelines set forth by the state and TSSAA. This includes limiting the number of attendees and maintaining social distancing. 

The full text of the Governor’s executive order will be available here in time. 

For more, see the December 31 issue of The Bledsonian-Banner.

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