Toledo reacts to DeWine’s statewide address

Many were expecting a statewide mandate and say they are ready for one.
Published: Jul. 16, 2020 at 9:43 AM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s main message in his Wednesday evening speech to Ohioans: Take action and wear a mask.

“I’m asking each of you to take action now, to sacrifice now, so our kids can be in schools, so they have the chance to play sports, so that our businesses can remain open,” pleaded DeWine.

Local health departments seeing an increase in cases are also joining in, telling people to do their part.

“If we can do more to stem the tide of infection in our community, the less chance we go to red, so again, I really hope that people take the idea of wearing a mask seriously, but it’s not the only tool in the toolbox,” Toledo Lucas County Health Commissioner Eric Zgodzinski said.

The Beirut Restaurant is part of Ohio’s restaurant task force. The owner, Labib Hajjar, says after watching the address, it’s even more reason to enforce a face covering for all.

“What the governor said really hit home,” says Hajjar. “We are all in it all together. There is no authority that can tell you what to do, what not to do, but this is it. If we don’t do this and don’t fight it straight on, it’s going to come back and come back bad.”

Others say they’ve already gotten used to the idea of a statewide mask requirement.

“I think it probably would be easier if they just made it statewide,” says Olivia Metzger. “Because in some of those places where they’re not making it required or not really enforcing it, it could just cause more problems.”

Bryan Budnick and Doug Bellmore said even before the COVID-19 days, they wore masks to work every day.

“We wear them all day for work, so you know they’re just a little bit different now. We have a dust mask or a shield of some sort usually so this really isn’t that big of a deal for us,” says Budnick.

“I think if you don’t wear a mask just like the seatbelt ticket, you get a ticket or a fine for it, so it’s just protecting everybody from it,” adds Bellmore.

The governor ended the address saying he is optimistic about Ohio’s future, and as for any other new health orders, those are a “discussion for another time.”

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