The governors of Colorado and Pennsylvania on Friday urged residents of their states to wear masks in public to try to blunt the spread of the coronavirus.
“Now if you’ve been around grocery stores, you’ve noticed that more and more people are wearing cloth masks. We want everybody in Colorado to do that,” Colorado Gov. Jared PolisJared Schutz PolisDemocrats eager to fill power vacuum after Pelosi exit Colorado trucker's case provides pathways to revive pardon power Biden addresses Coloradans after wildfires: 'Incredible courage and resolve' MORE (D) said at a press conference while wearing a mask of his own.
#breaking: @GovofCO is asking all Coloradoans to wear cloth coverings when they are going out of the house to do things like go to the grocery store. However, the Governor says non-medical masks should be worn to save resources. @DenverChannel pic.twitter.com/Y4kTlWquGo— Meghan Lopez (@Meghan_Lopez) April 3, 2020
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) added that masks were an effective tool for people to protect themselves and others while outside but noted that Pennsylvanians should still stay indoors as much as possible.
“Two days ago, I amplified our social distancing efforts by instituting a statewide stay-at-home order, and today I am asking all Pennsylvanians to wear a mask any time they leave their houses,” Wolf said in a statement. “Masks help prevent people from sharing illnesses. But, they don’t do a great job at keeping people from getting sick; and, they’re not foolproof, so it is critical that our first act is to ask ourselves if we really need to leave our house.”
“Wearing a mask will help us cut down the possibility that we might be infecting an innocent bystander, like the grocery store cashier, the pharmacist, or someone stocking shelves,” he added. “These people are keeping us alive by getting us the supplies we need. We owe it to them to do everything we can to keep them safe. Right now, that means wearing a mask.”
Colorado has had more than 3,700 confirmed coronavirus cases, and 97 people have died in the state. Pennsylvania has been hit harder by the highly infectious virus, facing more than 8,500 cases and 102 deaths.
Both states have stay-at-home orders in place that allow residents to leave their homes for essential purposes like going to the doctor or buying groceries.