From the Office of Matt Ryan:
Thank you for your patience and perseverance during this time. We have recently gone through impact to our communities as far as COVID-19. Now that the State’s numbers are climbing and we have heavy visitation, it is important that we realize that health measures need to be taken. We have a pandemic with no vaccine and not enough testing. We have had a surge in our region and transmission in our County and because of preventive measures we are leveling and turning the curve. We have been able to flatten the curve, but we are now seeing it rise again (see graph below and attached data dashboard). We have had active emergency rooms and stood up testing sites to help. We had a surge in homeless populations and through separation and testing have turned that curve protecting individuals and our community. Arizona is surging with one of the most rapid increases in COVID-19 cases in the Country (see graph below). The United States as a whole continues to have an upward trajectory with many more daily new confirmed COVID-19 cases than in the European Union (see graph below).
Although we are turning our curve in our County, we are getting visitation from other populations and need to protect our communities. The County is the Public Health Authority established to protect our general populations. Just as we have standards to help protect with food inspections, we have an airborne threat and need to institute preventative measures. When change occurs, such as when safety measures are required, there is a tendency to push back and not do until the context is understood. One way to look at this as a relates to a safety measure may be similar to the use of seatbelts. When they were instituted people pushed back originally. Now people use them regularly. Similarly, you do not know when you need them but you sure do when they are needed.
Therefore, a proclamation requiring wearing of masks, following CDC guidance, will take effect at noon today (see attached proclamation and press release for greater details). I support this order.
In Coconino County, as outlined in our proclamation (see attached proclamation for greater detail), all individuals older than 2 years old must wear a face covering within the unincorporated areas of the County under the following circumstances:
- Parents or guardians of children age 3 to 5 years old shall use their best efforts to keep face coverings on their children.
- When in a public indoor space if another person is present.
- When in public outdoor spaces if another non-household person is less than 6 feet away.
- When in the public areas of any business or government building.
- When waiting in line indoors and outdoors.
Face coverings will not be required for children under the age of 2 years old, or anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. Face coverings will not be required when at home, while eating or drinking, while swimming, while working alone in a workplace when six feet of physical distance is present, when alone in a vehicle or in a vehicle with household members, or when exercising alone or with household members. While we encourage people to stay safe and at home this proclamation does not prohibit people from going out and instead creates a safer environment when doing so.
Coconino County continues to stand up testing at Fort Tuthill Monday through Friday 10am to 3pm. The site will be closed on Friday July 3. Masks are required at the testing site (see the attached flyer). Please take care of yourself and your families. Please help us help others by wearing a mask and looking out for your neighbors. Stay safe and well. Thank you for your help.
Updates from the Office of Matt Ryan, District Three County Supervisor, Coconino County can be found at https://www.coconino.az.gov/2376/Dashboard-Data. This dashboard is updated daily.