Letter: The absence of masks

Published: 7/31/2020 12:01:55 AM

My daughter, who lives on Long Island, finally felt comfortable enough to bring her young family to New Hampshire for a visit this past weekend. Having lived essentially in quarantine in New York for months, they were shocked to make a rest stop in Milford and observe no one wearing masks. It was so disturbing that it was the first thing they mentioned when they arrived at our home in Weare.

Their shock was amplified for me when I (masked) went into a nearby local convenience store/deli to purchase Sunday newspapers. There was no signage encouraging masks, no lines on the floor marking 6-foot distance. None of the store staff wore masks nor did the two customers ahead of me in line. As a retired public health nurse, I watched in horror as an adult man conversed flirtatiously with a young cashier with far less than 6 feet between them.

There is no point in naming the particular business because shaming is ineffective, but if this kind of disregard for viral transmission continues widely across New Hampshire, we will soon join states experiencing surges. As David Brooks stated in the Monitor on July 27, “Good news here, but things can go bad in a hurry.” What a pity – entirely preventable with the simple behavior change of universal masking.



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