On Wednesday, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins issued an order urging all Dallas County businesses – including restaurants and bars – to implement health and safety protocols that require workers and customers to wear masks indoors.
Jenkins’ order, which goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, August 11, requires that health and safety policies developed by businesses such as bars and restaurants be implemented within three days of the order’s taking effect. It also requires that these guidelines be published publicly where they can be easily viewed by both staff and guests. If companies fail to develop a health and safety policy and publish it publicly, they can face fines that “do not exceed $ 1,000,” according to Richter.
Jenkins says companies operating in Dallas County are required to instruct guests to wear masks indoors and employ staff to ensure requirements are met. Jenkins says almost all of the companies in the county have complied with earlier masking requirements and that only one fine has been imposed for non-compliance. “Companies will not be fined if they take all reasonable steps to enforce mask-wearing guidelines,” Jenkins said at a news conference. Jenkins also said his office consulted with bar and restaurant owners in Dallas County in creating the order.
Earlier this week, Jenkins filed for a restraining order prohibiting Texas Governor Greg Abbott from interfering with local officials like Jenkins in the implementation of masked mandates. On Tuesday, a Dallas County district judge approved Jenkins.
in the opinion, edited by District Judge Tonya Parker, agreed with the argument that if Jenkins is not allowed to take action to contain the spread of COVID-19, Dallas Counties will suffer “immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage”. Parker ruled that the provisions of GA 38, Abbott’s executive ordinance, which prohibited municipalities from enforcing rules such as mask mandates, were “unenforceable.”
On Tuesday, the county reported a total of 3,270 new cases of the virus over three days, which is increasing in children in northern Texas in particular. On Tuesday there were only two pediatric intensive care beds in the district, and Over a third of all adult patients currently hospitalized in Dallas County are struggling with COVID-19.
Abbott stood firm in that in the months following the 2nd mandate or other strategies to contain COVID-19. Now the state is in the midst of a third wave of COVID-19 cases that are placing so much pressure on hospitals that patients are being flown out of major cities like Dallas and Houston because there aren’t enough beds or medical staff to staff them.
Jenkins isn’t the only person – government officials or otherwise – suing Abbott for inability to execute mask mandates. Bexar County, where San Antonio is located, also filed for a similar injunctionjust like … did a group of Dallas parents who questioned the governor’s authority to curtail the mask mandate in court.
Jenkins has not yet announced how long the mask mandate will be in effect in Dallas County. However, he said that future restrictions such as indoor capacity restrictions are currently being examined. A hearing on Judge Parker’s injunction is scheduled for August 24th.