WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) – The governor of the southern US state of Georgia, Brian Kemp, has sued against a mask requirement prescribed by the city of Atlanta. Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has exceeded her powers with the relevant regulation to curb the coronavirus, the governor argued in a lawsuit filed on Thursday (local time). Republican Kemp signed an ordinance on Wednesday, despite the spreading corona pandemic, that forbids municipalities and districts to introduce a mask requirement.
Democratic Mayor Bottoms said on Twitter, rather than arguing in court, it would be better to use taxpayers’ money to enable more corona testing and contact tracking. Kemp, in turn, said his lawsuit was against “disastrous measures that threaten the lives and livelihoods of our citizens.” At the same time, Kemp recommends wearing masks if the necessary safety distance to avoid infections cannot be maintained.
To date, the state has more than 130,000 proven corona infections and around 3,100 deaths. On Thursday, the authorities reported a good 3,400 new infections there.
Mayor Bottoms is currently in quarantine because she and several family members have been diagnosed with coronavirus infection. She had said last week that she had to wait eight days for her test result. She criticized the fact that the long time between tests and results made it more difficult to contain the pandemic because people did not know for days after their tests whether they were contagious.
Facial masks that cover the mouth and nose are an important means of containing the pandemic, experts say