12 thoughts on “‘It’s An Attitude’: Selectmen Puzzle Over Lack of Mask-Wearing Compliance

  1. My thought is that some economic modeling should be done. I’m certain that there are a number of people who will avoid downtown shopping if they see a lack of social distancing and a lack of masks, however I’m sure there will be some people who might not go downtown if required. Which scenario is best for the local economy and town spirit? The economist would also have to measure the long term costs of another spike which could lead to another shutdown.

  2. I agree with the aforementioned comment. While I relish the fact that the infection rate is now low, we should not wait for the inevitable spike to enforce the measures that resulted in the low infection rate.
    It is leadership’s job to promote public health. Enforcing face masks in town is basic to that. Don’t come to town if you don’t want to wear masks.
    Waiting for the other shoe to drop is not leadership.

  3. Why should we be PROactive!? What a ridiculous concept! Lets wait for “ Rome to start burning” again. Splendid idea. Minimize testing, no masks….. why bother? *eye roll*

  4. Excellent point Marty. Health and safety are our first priority. The economic component is also highly important. As we try to rebuilt economic trade in town any percentage of loss of trade due to health concerns is highly important to consider and understand.

  5. I am dealing with the great mask debate all day, every day here at the Chamber. The Town and the Chamber partnered early on to create a consistent messaging campaign encouraging all to wear masks. We printed and distributed hundreds of these posters in hopes that they would be seen by downtown go’ers and the message would sink in….simply the signs says “Its Up to all of Us! In an effort to keep us all safe, please wear a mask and maintain a social distance of six feet. Thank you”.

    These signs were distributed and hung in just about every store window. We have large posters with the same message in the alley coming down from the Park St. Lot, on a sandwich board in front of the theater, on the fence by the Train Station and the fence on Farm Road, on town hall doors at the NC Library, Softball fields, Dog Park, the ramp coming off the train etc. I am in the downtown every day and can speak to the fact that we have close to 100% compliance inside downtown businesses (restaurants are different as it is acceptable to remove the mask once seated) but it is outdoors that still remains to be a challenge. I see that people have suggested “enforcement” strategies but the problem is Governor Lamont has not required the wearing of masks outside and therefore there is nothing to enforce. In fact, Executive Order 7BB does not include outdoor use and only refers to “shall” wear in a public place when social distancing cannot be maintained. Because of this not being an executive order or a law, it is unenforceable. Other states have issued orders requiring it and anyone who does not wear one can be subject to a fine. I know for some of us it sounds relatively simple….I wear a mask to protect you and you wear a mask to protect me. I don’t know what more we can do other than to continue to beg people to wear them. Anyone who wishes not to can be denied access to a business and if they refuse to leave can be charged with trespassing. Not sure why we have to go there at all…….Just wear the darn mask when you are in town and other people are nearby, PLEASE. Do your part, wear a mask.
    Shop local/Wear a Mask/NC wins!

  6. A puzzle indeed. It’s almost as if the town could use someone intelligent and well-respected to give us frequent (daily?) updates via email or phone on all-things COVID-19 as well as friendly reminders on the importance of wearing masks. Oh, wait…

  7. It is unfortunate that we need to have this discussion. Wearing a mask is not just to protect yourself; it is to protect others as well. If you choose to accept the risk of illness for yourself, it is nevertheless unacceptable to make the decision for others of incurring higher risk.

    Having someone remind people to wear masks makes sense to me. After all, we have long had someone to remind people to not park their cars illegally. Breaking those rules even results in monetary consequences. Surely the threat to the public of allowing greater Covid transmission is more serious than the threat of illegal parking.

    The virus will be brought into New Canaan from places that are less careful than we are. It is not a risk; it is a certainty. If we only act once we see the resulting spike in infections, it will be too late.

  8. I don’t think we should be enforcing wearing a mask while walking in the open but I completely support wearing a mask in any place indoors or outdoors in a social distancing group. But let’s not target walkers.

    Also, I think a good public service message would be to advertise the cost of a Covid19 hospitalization from the low end to the extreme. When it comes to their money, people are better listeners.

  9. Unbelievable!!! You want to applaud all the people that have worked long hours to protect us all but putting on a mask is to much? I don’t like the mask at all but if protects and makes someone more comfortable put it on please. If you can’t follow this and we have to have town workers to do your job let’s grow up and do it ourselves.

  10. I’m also concerned that we are not receiving updates on our town status. Since Mike Handler left, we are forced to wait days for a town call to get even cursory information. Or, go to the town website and look at the infrequent updates on cases and deaths. What is our town strategy? Without an active Emergency management program (now meeting only weekly), we are left to figure out what is going on. Is our testing program still active? How many cases are there? Where are those cases located?( by age and facilities vs individual homes ). Is the town doing contract tracing? Is the age of those infected going down (the high school parade with no masks is a good example of what will cause a spread). It’s inevitable with nationwide cases at record levels that this will come back to New Canaan. We are badly prepared to face this inevitable occurrence.

    • I agree! The lack of regular phone updates creates or supports an impression that COVID-19 is over. It is not.

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