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From the Sheriff: Thanksgiving gatherings and COVID-19

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts

I encourage families to voluntarily abide by the governor’s executive order of no more than 10 people during Thanksgiving gatherings to reduce the spread of COVID-19, so everyone can stay healthy.

I support the wearing of facial covering at all times when in public, even when you are more than 6 feet away from another person. I believe in the science of how to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

However, this office will not enforce or respond to reports of gatherings of 10 or more during the Thanksgiving holiday time period or at any time. This is a health pandemic that should be enforced by health officials. For this office to engage family gatherings on private property without probable cause of a criminal matter is outside the scope and functions of this office and law enforcement as a whole.

For me this is not in defiance of Gov. Cuomo, but respecting the sanctuary of someone’s home where no criminal activity is involved.

Again, I believe in the science to reduce COVID-19 and encourage the limited gatherings of 10 or less, so our area does not get a COVID-19 spike that would drive further restrictions and even worse another shutdown or someone’s death.

Barry Virts is Wayne County sheriff.

Stock photo.