Texas Governor Bans Mask Mandates In Cities, Counties, Public Schools


Governor Greg Abbott is banning Texas cities, counties, and public schools from instituting their own mask mandates, according to a Tuesday announcement.

Starting on Friday, any local or county government entity that tries to require masks in Texas will be fined up to $1,000.

“Texans, not government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities,” Abbott said in a release. “We can continue to mitigate COVID-19 while defending Texans’ liberty to choose whether or not they mask up.”

Abbott officially ended the statewide mask mandate in early March, but most school districts still asked students, staffers, and visitors to wear masks on campus.

Under the new executive order, public schools may continue to follow current mask-wearing guidelines through June 4.

Also exempt from the order is the city of Austin. The state sued Austin after city leaders refused to lift the local mask mandate, but a judge ruled that Austin could keep the local mandate.

Masks will still be required at state-supported living centers, hospitals, jails, and juvenile facilities.

Abbott's announcement came just days after Texas reported 0 COVID-19 related deaths for the first time in 14 months.

Photo: Getty Images


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