Alabama officials seek to stop students with coronavirus from knowingly attending parties

Alabama officials seek to stop students with coronavirus from knowingly attending parties
© Getty Images

Alabama officials will extend the state’s “safer at home” order amid reports that Tuscaloosa students have attended parties in the area despite knowing they had the novel coronavirus.

Tuscaloosa Fire Chief Randy Smith on Tuesday said during a pre-council meeting that students have been attending parties in the area in recent weeks knowing they were infected, according to a local ABC affiliate.

"We had seen over the last few weeks parties going on in the county, or throughout the city and county in several locations where students or kids would come in with known positives. We thought that was kind of a rumor at first ... we did some additional research ... not only did the doctor's offices help confirm it, but the state confirmed they also had the same information," Smith said.

ADVERTISEMENT

The city council on Tuesday unanimously approved an ordinance requiring face masks in public spaces, set to take effect July 6 with a fine of $25 for violations, Tuscaloosa News reported.

“I think it’s sad that the city has to mandate a mask,” Councilman Kip Tyner said. “I wish people would take personal responsibility – I’ve been saying that for months – but, obviously, people aren’t going to do that.”

Meanwhile, Gov. Kay Ivey (R) announced the state’s “Safer at Home” order will last through July 31, citing rising cases. The order requires all gyms, child care facilities, barbershops and entertainment venues to follow social distancing and cleaning procedures, and only allows retailers to reopen their doors at 50 percent occupancy, according to ABC News.

"Personal responsibility means it is everyone's responsibility," Ivey said at a Wednesday news conference. "If we continue going in the wrong direction, and our hospitals are not able to handle the capacity of patients, then we're going to reserve the right to come back in and reverse course."