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Our opinion: An unnecessary proclamation

Warren Mayor Maurice Cashman has issued a proclamation asking Warren residents to comply with COVID-19 mitigation efforts, including wearing a mask and social distancing.

The proclamation came after a City Council meeting in July during which Jane Dunshie, a Warren resident, asked for a “visible show of support” for mask wearing, social distancing and hand-washing. The council chose not to pass a proclamation, so Cashman chose to do it himself.

There is nothing wrong with local officials chiming in on the need to take proper precautions, but it really was not necessary in the first place. Gov. Tom Wolf and Dr. Rachel Levine, state health secretary, have issued countless news releases, executive orders and public service announcements about the state’s mask guidance and requirements. The federal Centers for Disease Control and other federal agencies have done the same for months.

The seeming need for city officials to chime in is a ringing repudiation of the feelings many have for federal and state politicians.

Maybe Cashman’s proclamation will convince more people to wear masks and social distance, but we doubt it.

Most people reached a decision on mask wearing months ago.

A proclamation isn’t going to change that unless there is police enforcement of the order–and that’s a live wire no lawmaker wants to touch with a 10-foot pole, particularly in an election year.

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