New State Rep. Blake Johnson urges Holcomb to mandate masks statewide

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INDIANAPOLIS – State Rep. Blake Johnson (D-Indianapolis) today sent a letter to Governor Holcomb urging him to issue an order to mandate the use of masks statewide in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two of Indiana's surrounding states, Kentucky and Michigan, have issued mask mandates in their state in order to reduce the spread of the growing disease.

“My mother suffers from multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the central nervous system. This disease puts her at even greater risk during this public health crisis,” Johnson said.

“My question to the governor is simple: why does my mother’s life – and the lives of so many others who are at greater risk of severe illness from COVID-19 – matter less than the personal comfort and conveniences of those who refuse to believe the science and adhere to your calls to do the right thing?”

Read the full letter below:

 


 

July 10, 2020

The Honorable Eric Holcomb
Office of the Governor
Indiana Statehouse
200 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204-2797

Dear Governor Holcomb,

Thank you for your efforts and partnership as we’ve worked to slow the spread of COVID-19 throughout Indiana. I’m especially grateful for the campaign encouraging Hoosiers to “mask up” and do their part to protect themselves, their neighbors and families, and their communities as a whole. However, I believe quite strongly that the time has come to take our efforts to the next level. I respectfully request that you mandate the use of masks statewide. 

I will not recite the facts and figures on why masks are so important to containing and stopping this virus. You know them well. Your team knows them well.

Rather, I want to share that my request is painfully personal. My mother suffers from multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the central nervous system. This disease puts her at even greater risk during this public health crisis. She is vigilant about wearing her mask, encourages others to do so, and she and my father take all necessary steps to protect themselves and those they come in contact with. However, despite your belief that Hoosiers will do the right thing in light of this disease, I fear that far too many are choosing not to.

My question to you is simple: why does my mother’s life - and the lives of so many others who are at greater risk of severe illness from COVID-19 - matter less than the personal comfort and conveniences of those who refuse to believe the science and adhere to your calls to do the right thing?

This month, we required Hoosiers to put down their cell phones while driving. We did this because we know with certainty that doing so saves lives. It keeps the driver safe, and it keeps those around them safe as well. The argument to require masks is no different.

I thank you for considering this request and hope that together we can address this virus, stabilize and empower our economy, and get Indiana back on track.

Sincerely,

Blake Johnson
State Representative
Indiana House District 100

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