Ohioans adjusting to statewide mask mandate

People in Ohio have had a jump on Hoosiers when it comes to adjusting to the new statewide mask mandates. In Van Wert, county officials are working with everyone to help encourage mask wearing while providing the proper level of enforcement.

Posted: Jul 28, 2020 3:10 PM
Updated: Jul 28, 2020 3:33 PM

VAN WERT, Ohio (WFFT) - Just like it has elsewhere, masks have become a necessity in Van Wert as Ohio’s statewide mask mandate went into effect Thursday, July 24

Now people are having to make adjustments to their routine. For Lynn Simson, it’s not much of a change.

She likes the mandate and has been wearing a mask from the start. Simson said, "There were times where I was the only person, like in one of the stores, that I saw with a mask on, but I just can’t take that chance at my age."

Katlyn Osborn called the mandate "horrible." She says she suffers from anxiety, so it's hard for her to wear a mask, but feels judged if she doesn’t wear a mask, saying "People have to make their own judgment on whether or not they’re going to wear one, but my statement is I feel like I have to wear one because everyone else is staring at me if I’m not, but I agree it should not be law enforced."

This was the sentiment of Van Wert County Sheriff Tom Riggenbach.

He said in a statement on the night before the mandate went into effect, “This order is a health-related order that falls under the jurisdiction of the local health department. The Van Wert County Sheriff’s office will not be enforcing this order...If someone is violating the health order, please contact our local health department for mask compliance complaints."

According to Britt Menchhofer with the Van Wert Health Department, that’s what people are doing.

They’re receiving more than a dozen mask related calls a day, but mostly about businesses and not individual people.

"I don’t know if we’ve specifically received calls about businesses not requiring people to wear masks," Menchhofer said. "I know at least today, I had, I think I took three different calls about businesses who weren’t wearing masks."

There’s no legal penalty written into Ohio's mask mandate, but the Van Wert County Health Department is working with the state and the local prosecutor to see their options, according to Menchhofer.

Right now though, the only thing they want spreading is information about why mask-wearing is good.

Menchhofer said, "Our main goal right now is to educate, not be the heavy hand here. We just want to educate the public and our local community members."

There are a number of health exceptions to the mandate, so Sheriff Riggenbach is encouraging people to not assume someone isn’t wearing a mask because they don’t want to and "to be kind and be courteous to one another, as we all go through this together."

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 996341

Reported Deaths: 16245
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1343262101
Lake658231151
Allen57160791
Hamilton45963460
St. Joseph43954607
Elkhart35546503
Vanderburgh31975473
Tippecanoe27694256
Johnson24821440
Hendricks23647353
Porter22735362
Madison18538404
Clark18383248
Vigo17274300
Monroe15117197
LaPorte14987249
Delaware14931256
Howard14574286
Kosciusko12166147
Hancock11597175
Bartholomew11447179
Warrick11225188
Floyd10983214
Wayne10840248
Grant9898217
Morgan9361176
Boone8819115
Dubois8210129
Dearborn815492
Henry8107150
Noble7944106
Marshall7786134
Cass7462119
Lawrence7379168
Shelby7115114
Jackson691788
Gibson6480113
Harrison641591
Huntington630299
Knox6269105
DeKalb623796
Montgomery6184109
Miami586595
Putnam573477
Clinton567171
Whitley558055
Steuben550473
Wabash5250101
Jasper520475
Jefferson504695
Ripley492485
Adams472773
Daviess4596112
Scott433968
Greene421196
Wells419787
Clay418460
White414261
Decatur4118101
Fayette402186
Jennings383260
Posey374243
LaGrange352078
Washington352049
Randolph339999
Spencer336442
Fountain331858
Sullivan326652
Starke310868
Owen310169
Fulton304566
Orange290562
Jay278445
Perry264452
Franklin262742
Carroll258232
Rush257232
Vermillion254254
Parke229726
Pike227343
Tipton225659
Blackford187840
Pulaski181155
Crawford158122
Newton155648
Benton150117
Brown144047
Martin137319
Switzerland133911
Warren120116
Union106615
Ohio84012
Unassigned0532

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1494160

Reported Deaths: 23327
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1623021662
Cuyahoga1442512412
Hamilton1042291409
Montgomery729771240
Summit607921094
Lucas55462904
Butler50923707
Stark457361053
Lorain34972568
Warren32373369
Mahoning30168672
Clermont27861321
Lake26543434
Delaware23920162
Licking23442283
Trumbull22420552
Fairfield22117241
Greene22014311
Medina21673305
Clark19567349
Richland18260280
Portage17616247
Wood17174220
Allen15672269
Miami15305296
Muskingum14481174
Columbiana13656263
Wayne13538263
Tuscarawas12415298
Marion11760175
Scioto11336154
Pickaway11264141
Erie10613180
Ross10425196
Lawrence9638137
Hancock9504149
Ashtabula9410197
Belmont9086197
Geauga8795157
Jefferson8455191
Huron8193139
Union809156
Washington8009137
Sandusky7677145
Athens767072
Knox7571138
Darke7530151
Seneca7184144
Ashland6776125
Auglaize664896
Shelby6392111
Brown627382
Crawford6159130
Mercer606793
Defiance6059102
Fulton590596
Highland587199
Madison585776
Clinton575190
Logan569092
Guernsey568467
Preble5640121
Putnam5238108
Williams516784
Perry511761
Champaign502971
Jackson495470
Ottawa477886
Coshocton468382
Morrow449056
Pike429962
Fayette420760
Adams409987
Gallia409865
Hardin409276
Van Wert362378
Henry357171
Holmes3549122
Hocking350378
Wyandot316561
Carroll295459
Paulding275145
Meigs257849
Monroe212153
Noble195646
Morgan190132
Harrison177842
Vinton161724
Unassigned05
Fort Wayne
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Angola
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Huntington
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Decatur
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Van Wert
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Sunday is another cool day with breezy conditions and plenty of sunshine.
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