Abbott: No new mask orders

Nick Wagner |  POOL via American-StatesmanTexas Governor Greg Abbott addresses the state during a coronavirus update last year.

Despite increases in COVID-19 cases statewide, Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday that he won’t authorize another mask mandate.

“There will be no mask mandate imposed, and the reasons for that are very clear,” Abbott told KPRC in Houston on Tuesday. “There are so many people who have immunities to COVID, whether it be through the vaccination, whether it be through their own exposure and their recovery from it, which would be acquired immunity.”

Abbott added that it would be “inappropriate to require people who already have immunity to wear a mask.”

He said he’s working with local officials to ensure everyone has supplies for people to get the vaccine if they want it. The delta variant has reignited a surge of hospitalizations due to COVID-19, but current vaccines are proven to be effective against it.

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, nearly 75% of Texans over the age of 65 are fully vaccinated and almost 83% are partially vaccinated. An estimated 51% of all Texans are fully vaccinated.

However, Walker County remains far behind the statewide averages with 63% of area residents over the age of 65 fully vaccinated. An estimated 38% of county residents are fully vaccinated. 

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