FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – All workers in Oakland County who have contact with the public, as well as anyone who goes to the grocery store within the county, are now required to wear face masks.
The requirement is designed to help Oakland County slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Businesses have until April 27 to comply with the new order.
“Effective today -- it is designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by requiring employees of essential businesses that have contact with the public to wear face coverings,” Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter said.
Mark Khmori, the owner of Jonna’s Fine Wine and Liquor in Farmington Hills, said he’s been wearing a mask and gloves for weeks.
“It makes me feel safe,” Khmori said.
He also installed plexiglass at the cash register.
Khmori said he supports Coulter’s new order for essential workers. But Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel believes that type of order should come from the governor.
“To say that our health department could say you have to or are required to would be unenforceable,” Hackel said.
Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard said many businesses are taking steps to stay safe. He said his resources are stretched thin.
“Calls up, ranks down because of sickness, and it’s a challenge," Bouchard said.
Mitigating the spread of COVID-19 will ultimately come down to testing.
Drive-thru testing site
Coulter also announced a new drive-thru testing site.
“If we all do our part, we can be safe and get back to normal soon,” Coulter said.
Coulter began Tuesday’s announcement by praising Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan for the testing at the State Fairgrounds.
Officials now have a similar setup in Pontiac, outside of the circuit court. It will begin Thursday, with 50-100 people tested Thursday and Friday and up to 250 people once its full up and running, Coulter said.
Residents must have symptoms of the coronavirus to get tested.
First responders, Pontiac residents, essential workers people 65 and older and those with underlying conditions are a priority.
The county will also start publishing recovery rates on its website. The number will include people who were diagnosed 30 days prior and are no longer showing symptoms.
As of Tuesday, 298 people in Oakland County have recovered, according to officials.