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Petition making masks a requirement gains momentum in Duluth

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DULUTH, MN-- As more cities in Minnesota change their requirements for mask-wearing in public places and businesses, Duluth community members are stepping up to give their two cents on the issue.

"I think people should wear masks," said Duluthian, Lindsay Nash.

Nash has a medically compromised seven-year-old son.

"I think we all need to do our part to help protect others," said Nash.

Meanwhile, those on the opposite side of the conversation say people should be able to police themselves.

"I think people should be allowed to make the right choice for them," said Dave Danielson.

Edina, Rochester, and the University of Minnesota campuses are the latest to announce new face mask requirements.

Now, an online petition is en route with more than 800 signatures asking Duluth to follow suit.

Duluth City Councilor, Arik Forsman said Tuesday the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving in real-time.

"Even today we are seeing guidance from Dr. Fauci that we could see up to 100,000 thousand today if we continue on our current trajectory across the country," said Forsman.

Forsman added, "Something must be done to combat coronavirus."

"It's something we should really consider what actions can be taken locally and it starts with citizen engagement and participation in this process."

Forsman said as the petition continues to gain supporters, the council is taking notes on the issue.

"I know that councilors are considering what's being brought forward with the petition specifically and evaluating our potential options," said Forsman.

Hopefully, with the same goal in mind, adds Forsman. "It's about protecting ourselves, our neighbors, and quite frankly our economy."

Fifth Council District Councilor, Janet Kennedy also spoke on the petition.

"I think it's really important especially in the vulnerable communities, medical issues, and the elderly."

Wednesday, Forsman, along with city councilor Terese Tomanek and local hospital leaders are planning an announcement.

They billed it as a press conference discussing the importance of wearing masks.

You can watch it live at 11 a.m. on our website, Facebook page, and mobile app.

To learn more about the petition click here.

Lyanne Valdez

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