YUKON, Okla. (KOKH) — Despite a recommendation from the Yukon coronavirus task force, in a 4-1 vote Tuesday evening, Yukon City Council has chosen to indefinitely postpone its decision on a city-wide mask mandate.
Mayor Shelli Selby was the only council member to vote against the postponement.
The current mask ordinance only applies to employees at bars and restaurants and anyone going into a city building.
The suggestion to expand Yukon’s mask mandate to everyone came as Mayor Selby says coronavirus cases in Canadian County doubled over the last two weeks. She also says hospitals in Yukon are reaching capacity.
Regardless of those concerns, dozens of Yukon residents showed up at Tuesday’s meeting to speak out against a mandate.
Critics arguing mask mandates are unnecessary and overstep government power.
Yukon resident, Kendall Roberts says, “That’s infringing on our rights and if it’s a mask mandate when are they going to mandate that we wear a full-body suit or mandate what we eat or what we can eat? It’s got to stop somewhere.”
Ultimately, the majority of council members seemed to agree. Many of them saying they aren’t against masks but are against making them mandatory.
Yukon City Council Member, Dona Yanda says, “I don’t think people should be forced to do anything. I think people should be smart.”
Yukon City Council Member, Jeff Wootton says, “We should do what’s best for each other, but I don’t think it’s our position to say you have to or you will get whatever. I think that’s crossing the line.”
Mayor Selby does have the power to push a mask mandate through despite Tuesday’s vote but has said she will honor the council’s decision.