Beginning Saturday, anyone going into a Dallas County business or riding public transportation will be required to wear a mask, County Judge Clay Jenkins announced Thursday afternoon.
In a tweet, Jenkins said he expected Dallas County residents would comply with the new requirement without law enforcement needing to take action.
"Dallas County residents value the sacrifice of frontline responders at essential businesses as well as their own health and #publichealth," Jenkins tweeted.
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To better protect you and our frontline heroes, we are requiring all visitors to essential businesses, essential business employees and riders of public transportation to wear a cloth covering starting Saturday.— Clay Jenkins (@JudgeClayJ) April 16, 2020
The new requirement came shortly after county health officials announced 80 new cases of COVID-19 and seven additional deaths from the virus. Jenkins called on county residents to avoid going outside whenever possible in order to help limit the spread of the disease.
"We must limit all unnecessary trips," Jenkins said. "Each trip carries some risk to you, your family and the public at large."
Since the virus arrived in Dallas County last month, there have been 2,066 confirmed cases in the county, including 50 deaths, county officials reported.