Recently, the number of daily new Coronavirus cases has declined nationwide. Several experts credit an increase in mask wearing for this recent decrease. Governor Kay Ivey implemented the statewide mask order on July 16, and Alabama has seen a sharp drop in the percentage of positive tests over the past month. The number of daily confirmed cases in Alabama has gone from over 2,100 new cases a day at its peak in mid-July to an average of about 728 new cases per day this past week. These statistics display the dedication Alabamians have put forth to follow guidelines adopted by state and local officials, as well as our determination to slow the spread of Coronavirus among Alabama communities.
Although the state is currently headed in the right direction, this virus remains a significant threat to the health and well-being of many, and Alabamians must continue to heed advice from public health officials. Governor Ivey on Thursday extended the current Safer at Home order which is now set to expire on Friday, October 2, at 5:00 pm. This extension includes the statewide mask ordinance, enforcing individuals to wear a mask or facial covering in public. The order also requires students and employees at K-12 schools and colleges to wear a mask.
Alabama State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris stated Thursday the mask mandate is the first order that has brought significant improvement statewide since the onset of the pandemic in March. Dr. Harris said the daily number of cases, Coronavirus-related deaths, and hospitalizations due to the virus have tremendously decreased since Governor Ivey’s mask order was put into effect.
With Labor Day weekend right around the corner, it is vital to the progress we’ve made that you continue to be vigilant by practicing social distancing and avoiding large gatherings. As we move forward on the road to recovery, please continue to listen and adhere to all guidance and orders given by our state leaders and public health officers. Your participation is crucial to protect your families and those around you. Every decision our state and local leaders are making throughout the course of this pandemic prioritize the health and safety of all Alabamians, and they will continue to always put the people of Alabama first.
Martha Roby represents Alabama’s Second Congressional District. She lives in Montgomery, Alabama, with her husband Riley and their two children.