Amid rising COVID-19 cases both across the country and the state, Governor Tate Reeves addressed Mississippi’s ongoing response to the pandemic during a Facebook live session this afternoon.
From the Governor’s Mansion, where Reeves and his family are isolating after his youngest daughter tested positive for the virus, the governor expressed that as cases rise in Mississippi, hospitalizations are rising as well. While the state remains below the peak of the summer, Reeves stated that Mississippi is seeing “more and more challenges within our healthcare system.” This echoes a sentiment expressed by the Department of Health in recent days that asks all Mississippians to wear a mask and practice social distancing to help limit the spread of the virus and cut down on potential hospitalizations.
Governor Reeves also discussed his most recent executive order, which places 15 counties under a mask mandate and stricter guidelines.
In response to the order, the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Department issued a statement explaining that they would not be enforcing the order.
“Sheriff Rasco doesn’t force his deputies to wear masks in settings where the host or property owner doesn’t require it. However, he respects the wishes of our hosts and property owners when they request that masks be worn. We have not issued any citations. We will not issue citations for not wearing masks nor will we enforce Governor Tate Reeves mandate on social distancing.”
The governor maintained that the DeSoto County residents should follow the order to protect themselves and their neighbors in an area where case numbers are rapidly rising.
“There is nothing that we can do that is foolproof,” Reeves said. “There is no mitigation measure that we can do that guarantees the elimination of the virus. So, what we’re talking about is trying to attack it in a number of different ways while we do not allow for the shut down of our economy, but that we do the little things which can slow the virus at the margin which can help to protect the integrity of our healthcare system.”
Speaking further on the economic impact of the pandemic, Governor Reeves dismissed the possibility of the reported nationwide shutdown being considered by President-Elect Joe Biden, saying the idea of a four to six-week shutdown “is totally and completely beyond reasonableness.”
The governor added that his daughter is feeling “okay” and that the family appreciates the prayers that have been sent their way.
Below, you can watch the entire session: