Publish date:

Minnesota Medical Association urges state leaders to make face masks mandatory

Thirteen states already have mandatory mask policies.

Medical societies that represent more than 10,000 physicians and physicians-in-training in Minnesota want state and local leaders to make it mandatory to wear a face mask in all public indoors facilities and on public transportation. 

The Minnesota Medical Association (MMA) issued a release Friday on behalf of 20 other state medical groups saying masks should be worn because the "threat of this virus is not over," said Keith Stelter, a medical doctor who presides as president of the MMA. 

"The medical benefits of wearing a mask are clear – a mask helps reduce virus transmission, particularly by individuals who are sick but have no symptoms and by individuals who have been infected but do not yet show any symptoms. Masks are also safe to wear," said Stelter. 

“Statewide use of masks now in all indoor settings and on public transportation can help Minnesota avoid the resurgence of cases that is happening in many other states and avoid a backwards turn of the dial."

The recommendation comes on the same day that Florida set a new single-day record with more than 9,000 people testing positive for COVID-19 in 24 hours. Outbreaks are also being seen in other states, including Texas and Arizona. 

University of Minnesota infectious disease expert Dr. Michael Osterholm said this week that there are 26 states currently experiencing rising case levels, nine states that have leveled off and 15 others (including Washington, D.C.) that are seeing decreasing numbers.

Minnesota has seen a mixture of leveling off and decreasing numbers since the calendar flipped to June, with this week featuring six consecutive days of single-digit deaths. 

Osterholm expects the pandemic to continue as a slow burn with peaks and valleys of outbreak, so he said states like Minnesota that have leveled off or seen decreasing numbers shouldn't be surprised if cases spike again in the near future. 

It is not mandatory to wear a mask in most of Minnesota, though it is strongly recommended by the Minnesota Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

The CDC urges people to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth in public places where maintaining social distancing is difficult. Masks help protect others from your germs, while it's important to note that the CDC says that wearing a mask does not protect you from others who may spread the virus. 

In Minneapolis, wearing a mask is required in public indoor spaces. Mayor Jacob Frey used executive powers to mandate masks in public indoor areas on May 26, saying that anyone over the age of 2 who can medically tolerate a mask must wear one at all times in such settings. 

The following states already mandate face coverings in public spaces: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Washington, and the District of Columbia.

Next Up

moose minnesota usfws - flickr

MN homeowner mistakes large tent for dead moose

They spotted two people on a security camera dragging the "moose" across a driveway.

Flickr - minneapolis police officer close-up belt camera - Tony Webster

What happens if Mpls. public safety question passes? City memo provides answers

The memo was sent to the mayor and council members Tuesday morning.


COVID-19 hits Minnesota Wild coaching staff

The Wild will be shorthanded for Tuesday night's game in Vancouver.

Anthony Edwards

Ant takes alpha role after bad loss: 'We need to lock the f*** in'

The Timberwolves' rising star was not happy after Monday's loss to the Pelicans.

parker eisinger

Lakeville football player diagnosed with cancer week before playoffs

The tenth-grader was diagnosed with a form of cancer most commonly found in people aged 65 and older.

University of Minnesota peeping tom suspect

Someone keeps trying to film showering women at U of M

The university has received three reports in the past two weeks.

john Fluevog shoes 1

John Fluevog Shoes closes its Uptown Minneapolis store

The brand could return to the Twin Cities one day.

sidecar drink

Sidecar — Town Hall's new cocktail lounge — is officially open in Minneapolis

It's the fifth Town Hall location, but the first to focus on cocktails.

Screen Shot 2019-07-18 at 9.10.30 AM

Here's where DFLers stand on Minneapolis' public safety ballot question

The question would create a Department of Public Safety and remove some requirements.

Arthur Kollie

Man pleads guilty to brutal murder of 14-year-old girl in Fargo

The 14-year-old girl was the victim of a random attack outside a Fargo strip mall.

Minneapolis Mayoral Candidates 2021 - jacob frey sheila nezhad kate knuth

Here's who has endorsed the frontrunners for Minneapolis mayor

Politicians and community groups are voicing their opinions.


coronavirus, pandemic, masks

Map shows where Minnesotans are wearing masks, everywhere they're not

In most of Minnesota, people are not wearing face masks in public despite the fact it can help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.

coronavirus, masks, covid-19

Lunds & Byerlys, Kowalski's will require shoppers to wear masks

The main protection people get from masking occurs when others in their communities also wear face coverings, the CDC says.

masks, coronavirus, covid-19

Osterholm: It's time for a mask mandate, but social distancing more important

The state epidemiologist backs Gov. Walz ordering a mask mandate.


Minneapolis reveals more details of mandatory face mask policy

Beginning May 26, masks will be required for indoor public spaces in Minneapolis, including stores.

coronavirus, masks, covid-19

3 more Minnesota cities approve mandatory face masks

The cities join a growing list of places in Minnesota that will require masks in public indoor spaces.

coronavirus, masks, covid-19

Minneapolis to make face masks mandatory inside public spaces

The mayor will sign the emergency regulation on Thursday.