Oklahoma congressman Frank Lucas came out this week saying it’s time for the state to take some definitive actions to combat the COVID-19 pandemic including possible mask mandates and limitations of crowds.
“With more than 1,500 Oklahomans now hospitalized and new positive cases averaging more than 2,600 per day, it’s time for Oklahoma to act,” he stated in a statement from his office.
He also came out in apparent support of the governor issuing a possible mask mandate, something Gov. Kevin Stitt has left up to individual counties and cities.
“Simply put, everyone wearing a mask in public will reduce spread of the coronavirus and save lives,” said the Congressman.
Lucas indicated he didn’t support strict lockdowns as some governors have ordered. But he said as deaths increase this winter, Oklahoma leaders will need to implement steps to slow the spread of COVID.
While he noted that leaders—from Congress to mayors–show no support for total lockdowns or stay-at-home orders, science shows there are other temporary measures that can be taken.
One of the steps that must be taken, said Rep. Lucas is “limiting crowded settings.”
He pointed to research by Stanford University that snowed most COVID-19 transmissions occur at “superspreader sites” which include full-service restaurants, grocery stores, gyms and cafes.
“Capping indoor capacity between 20% and 50% could decrease new infections by as much as 80% — a public health intervention that will be important to focus on as activities move indoors for the winter months,” added Lucas who stressed Oklahoma leaders should follow science and the recommendations of doctors and epidemiologists.
“Wearing a mask and limiting crowd capacity will be a temporary inconvenience for many of us but could have lifesaving results for our neighbors,” said the congressman.
Click here for his full statement which was also carried in The Oklahoman.